How does one un-become? We speak alot in our society of becoming someone or something. Rarely though, do we think of the need to un-become. How do we? Can we? And should we?
I’ll share with you some thoughts about my life and how these qustions manifested recently…
Upon return from three weeks away, in my village of origin in Greece, I became aware of how depleted I was from constant work. Three years ago, I happened upon a yoga studio. While I’d never planned on such an undertaking, these last years, I rededicated myself to the business and its new & robust workspace. I built a professional community, I kept to my practice, I taught and continued my formal study of Iyengar Yoga. In time, it became all consuming. It was as if the studio always required more. More ideas. More networking. More classes. More private sessions. More events. More workshops. More. More. More. So I did what every American small business owner does. I put my nose to the grindstone. Six, often seven days a week, trying to make MORE happen.
What I have learned is that growing a business is an organic process. For all my hard charging and trying, my rewards only diminished. I was exhausting myself and my health. Returning from vacation, I realized I do not want MORE. I want less. I don’t want to hustle harder for a building that never stops with its ever mounting overhead. I don’t want to work 6/7 days a week at a frenetic pace.
Btw, I’m rather type B, and to think I could be something other than who I am, was not being honest or true to myself. I had given up me in the process of always doing more. At one point, I couldn’t remember the last time I’d had a full day off, or got to read a book, or just lay around in my pajamas. Life is about balance. Yoga teaches us to be honest and true to oneself.
My un-becoming is then, to let go of the studio. My dream, really, has always been to teach from my home. I’m letting go of so much, and sure, it’s scary. Reinventing yourself and your business most certainly is. However, once I made the decision, all the anxiety was gone. I feel peace inside. I gave it my absolute all and it’s just not for me. A life of simplicity is what I’m after. I believe it was good that I did this. I know what it takes and know it’s just not how I want to work or live my life.
Sometimes we can get so wrapped up in life that we don’t recognize who we are or why we are doing that which fills our days. Our society is interested in creating work horses. This is the standard of most of corporate America and part of why we are often so stressed out as compared with those in other developed countries. Europeans work to live. Americans live to work. There is more than a negligible difference.
The art of un-becoming is an unlearning. It’s a process. Just as we learn, we all have things to unlearn. This too, is part of our yoga practice and yoga, naturally, is just a metaphor for how we live our lives. So don’t be afraid to un-become. As long as you have life, breath, and will, you can reinvent, as you see fit. Follow the path only you know is best for your soul.