The secret to happiness is…
What is the secret to happiness? I’m going to say movement. After being inactive for seven months, I finally began climbing and practicing yoga again this past week and I feel new and old again. New, because I feel fresh and revived, old, because I remember this blissful feeling. It feels like its been a lifetime ago, but I remember it. It is something you have to experience first-hand to know what I am talking about.
I remember reading years ago that Rudolf Steiner, an Austrian philosopher and founder of Waldorf Education, said something to the effect that movement was vital for babies to learn to speak and think. According to him, it is why children crawl and walk before they talk. I feel a new reverence to movement because of having to live with an inability to do what I love the most, active movement. It seems to me now that for months I couldn’t articulate what wasn’t right with me (besides the obvious, a bad ankle). It was my inability to truly feel happy because of my lack of active movement.
I’m not gonna lie and say I’m crushin’ it at the gym. No, I am not yet sending 5.10s but I am shocked at how much my body remembers. I wondered if it would be like starting over completely, but it’s not. My body knows when to turn my hips toward the wall and to move my feet up hoping there will be a good handhold waiting for me. It knows without me thinking about it, which is really exciting and amazing to me.
And yoga. Oh, yoga, how I have missed you working away all of my past stresses from my muscle memory! I have forgotten how good it feels to hold my back upright. I have forgotten how addicting it is to have my shoulders loosened by a session, but then craving more and more afterward because it’s not enough! This feeling was so clean and freeing to me that after my first returning class, I gave up coffee and diet soda and have not looked back. I don’t want anything to break this blissful state I am bathing in. And again, I am giving you my disclaimer, I am not even able to keep up with the class because of my ankle, but it doesn’t matter. I am doing what my body needs, working at my own pace, and it is just right.
Don’t judge yourself, just be present and experience the wonders of what your body can do. Move and be grateful. Show your body gratitude by filling it with healthy food, drink, and thoughts. We all deserve to feel our best at all times; choose to feel well.