8 Limbs Of Yoga Drive Creativity
To liberate the potential of your mind, body and soul, you must first expand your imagination. You see, things are always created twice: first in the workshop of the mind and then, and only then, in reality. I call this process ‘blueprinting’ because anything you create in your outer world began as a simple blueprint in your inner world. — Robin Sharma
I’ve spent much of my life being busy with the pursuit of productivity. During childhood I experienced a great mix of learning, exploring, dreaming and bringing my ideas to life in creative ways. Then I wasted a bunch of time being a teenager and young adult, where socializing was my primary focus. Once my husband and I decided to have children, our focus shifted to creating a family life that provided everything we had dreamed of. Those were heavy expectations to place on our ourselves. We invested a couple of decades in the battle to earn more money, with the hope this would secure our future.
When we had climbed to a respectable rung on the ladder of life, we realized we were leaning up against the wrong wall. Not only that, maybe climbing the ladder of wealth and success, as measured by society, was not what we wanted anymore. We wondered if there was more to life? The answer to this question and many others was not to be found by continuing to do the same things year in and year out. So we dropped out of normal life by taking a year off. (Travel Changes A Person).
After the trip and our return to our home, life should have gone back to normal. To the outside world it probably looked like that. Our teenagers resumed attendance at a regular high school and I returned to very similar corporate work I had left behind. But this time it was different because I was changed from the experience of travel. I was aware of my stress triggers and was in the work of creating a different kind of life for myself. I had tasted and felt what it was like to manage stress in a healthy way and I was not ready to go back to the pre-travel version of myself.
Inadvertently, I had stumbled into the practice of yoga as defined by the 8 limbs, with the exception of only a couple. Because I had not been in the habit of the physical poses, the asanas, I had assumed I was not actually practicing yoga. But, I had actually been on a personal quest which aligned with the traditions of yoga. I came home with a sense of calm I had never known before. It was almost unexplainable.
Some also believe that yoga brings us more in-line with our “authentic selves.” In daily life, we put on personas for work and friends and even our home lives. While these personas may have reflections of our true selves, they are not who we are on the inside. Yoga allows us to reconnect with our true identities, and in turn our natural creativity. When one doesn’t have to pretend to be someone they’re not, they can spend that energy imagining anything else in the world. -‘Using Yoga To Boost Creativity‘
What I knew for sure upon arriving home and still believe now is that I like this new version of myself. I like to feel as if each moment of each day is a creative adventure. While I am dedicated to this new way of living, it is not always a state of bliss. I suffer from hearing the violent news of the day, just like anyone else. I feel deflated when things turn out poorly. I cry when life is sad. But I have acquired a strong sense of resilience, something which eluded me before I took time off from corporate work.
In the workshop of my mind, anything is possible. Why not? Why limit what I can imagine? I used to think that by dress rehearsing the worst-case scenario I was better preparing myself for everything that could go wrong in my life. I truly thought that I could ‘plan’ to manage anything that came my way. I have since discovered, the negative things that have happened to me came as a complete surprise. I have learned from Brené Brown:
“Why do we insist on dress-rehearsing tragedy in moments of deep joy? Because joy is the most vulnerable emotion we feel. And that’s saying something, given that I study fear and shame. When we feel joy, it is a place of incredible vulnerability—it’s beauty and fragility and deep gratitude and impermanence all wrapped up in” ― Brené Brown, Dare to Lead: Brave Work. Tough Conversations. Whole Hearts.
I believe the magic of a creative practice is anchored in how normal it is. Meaning it is part of a lifestyle, not something separate. I want all my moments to include the joy of creativity, not just the few weeks of a year when I can escape my normal life for a vacation. It seems so sad that we live such a stressful existence, most of the time, so that we require a recovery period. I truly believe we can ‘create a life we don’t need a vacation from’.
By pursuing a creative life, it seems logical that our level of wellness will be enhanced. As the DailyFinds this week have explored, there is much to be gained from practicing creativity. Enjoy these DailyFinds if you missed any of them this week.
- A Modern Guide to Yoga Philosophy: Yamas & Niyamas
- The Yamas and Niyamas
- Asana: The Third Limb of Yoga
- Pranayama Breathing Can Spark Your Creative Fire
- Yoga Meets Creativity
- Yoga to unlock your creativity
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By joining, you will receive my weekly DailyFinds essay. The topics are diverse, but creativity is always at the heart. I look forward to connecting with you, feel free to send me an email – Christine@DailyCreatives.com
“Another meaning of the word yoga is “to tie the strands of the mind together.” ― T.K.V.Desikachar