A few months back I read an article in the local paper entitled “Can Yoga counteract the effects of a disability?” and something about the article compelled me to rip it out and tape it to my wall, for further evaluation at a later date.
That date is here.
The writer is 40 year old Gene Myers and he discusses how he went to see Matthew Sanford, a successful yoga instructor who also happens to be a paraplegic. Our writer, Gene, has a disability which causes him to walk with a cane. Sanford, our teacher, subscribes to the idea that “One of the things that happens when we age is that we tend to pull away from the outer edges of our bodies.”
I’d never heard that before, but I liked it, and being obsessed with Muchness, I immediately started to see it in that context.
When I feel in touch with my Muchness, it’s like my spirit and energy is shooting out of the ends of my fingertips. But when I’m running on autopilot and making excuses for living less than than I know I’m capable of, it does feel like I’ve “pulled away from the outer edges of my body.” My spirit, my light, my confidence and belief in the possibilities of what I am capable of sorta shrivel into a little ball inside my gut.
He talks about how physically, this pulling away from our outer edges is a side effect of aging, and as far as The Muchness is concerned, on many levels I agree. As kids we’re less stressed and less concerned about what other people think, and we also often believe we are capable of ANYTHING. I know I thought I was. But as we age, so many of us somehow lose that blind confidence, that take-on-the-world attitude and we curl up in a ball inside ourselves.
To counteract the physical effects, Sanford teaches the yoga regiment of mindful or purposeful stretching.
To counteract the effects where Muchness is concerned, I recommend the mindful and purposeful action of taking stock of your MuchnessMoments. Capturing them with pictures and reminding yourself of all that you are capable of. Stretching your imagination and visualizing the things that fill you with Muchness- that which makes you feel whole and complete and happy – and them DOING MORE OF THOSE THINGS, will help fill your Muchness Bucket when it feels depleted, and help push you to the edge of your body.
What do you think of this analogy? Can you relate to that feeling… in a way I guess it’s like being empty inside, but not really, because deeper inside you KNOW there is a wealth of strength and beauty… just like you know your body is capable of more, even if you are, as in the case of Sanford, a paraplegic. Sometimes you just don’t know how to reach that deep, I guess.