Have you ever confused intuition with fear? Conflated knowledge and assumption? Mistaken survival instinct for wisdom? Waged a war of heart vs. head?
I'll tell ya ... it's hard work being aware of all the forces that play tug-of-war with our heart strings. Yoga and mindfulness help us tune in ... but what happens when the inner messages contradict each other?
Sometimes awareness simply isn't enough. We must learn to practice what my yoga therapy mentor Michael Lee calls discernment -- understanding subtle differences and nuances.
Discernment involves learning to identify a deeper inner truth that's stronger than the white noise of fear. It's a practice of noticing your body's response to different potential paths forward. It's the art of knowing when to move forward with a decision and when to ride out the waves of emotion without action. In other words -- practicing good judgment.
So how do you strengthen your good judgment muscle? Practice, practice, practice. Below are some upcoming Boston-based opportunities to help you bulk up. And in the meantime, here are 5 key questions to ask yourself to lay the groundwork for becoming a kick-ass discernment ninja:
What does fear feel like in my body? Track the things in your life that induce muscle contraction, tension, pain, digestive disruption, fatigue, etc.
What does truth feel like in my body? Track the things that create muscle relaxation, openness, relief, vitality, natural highs, etc.
Which activities exacerbate fear and muddle my sense of self? Notice the effects of toxic conversations, imagining worst case scenarios, rushing, comparing, reacting, etc.
Which activities help me get clarity and hear my own truth? Notice the effects of journaling, talking to a certain friend, going for a walk, therapy, making art, yoga, etc.
- Now how can I adjust accordingly?
May you thrive.