I’ve been thinking about the word resilience lately. By definition it is the ability to recover from something tough, or the ability to reclaim shape. So it can be thought of as elasticity or flexibility. Neuroscientists who have studied resilience have learned that it is a practice and can be gained and expanded. This applies to our relationships, our hearts, our minds up to the tissue in our bodies.
Andrew Huberman, faculty at the Department of Neurobiology at Stanford, writes “Fear is a five-lane highway in the brian, while resilience is a foot path through the woods. We can make that dirt path wider by walking it, over and over again.”
I am finding this incredibly comforting as another wave and lockdown loom over the world and as the dark cold days winter days creep in. Our yoga practice is precisely the kind of umbrella which gives us a chance to micro-practice resilience over and over again, expanding that very foot path. And it sure feels like the times are calling strong to that part of us that can be elastic and reshape and constantly recalibrate. Like everything, consistent practice affects more change than bursts and spurts. Which is where cultivating a practice is so useful and a true gift that continues to give over time.
I am seeing more of you in class again as it gets colder. And even some new folks dropping in. This makes my heart so happy. My intention has always been to co-create a ‘home space’ of sorts together. Different, obviously than that of our families or physical homes. A space where we can lay down your bones in communion, together, through the best of times and the worst. I have now seen not only the remarkable resilience of that ‘space’ during these last 8 months, but also that of you in it. You have done as good a job of keeping me afloat both in the material realm and in the depth of my spirit as I have with you. And there are truly not many things that bring me more joy than that. And feeling joy, in these times… well… that is the greatest gift.
I hope you know how amazing you are and that you are able to feel the grit of your own resilience at having made it even this far. We still have a steep hike ahead of us. And I hope that knowing we are all in it with you can offer you some heart.
If you are synching your circles back in, which Sarah and I are, chances are ThanksGiving will be unlike any other. To that end, I have expanded my schedule a bit for the week to offer that ‘home space’ (all times ET):
And as always, if you can’t afford to come but want to be there, write me and come as my guest. I say this every year. And every year I mean more than the last. I give so much thanks for YOU. And in the words of one of my favorite songs:
I wish you shelter from the storm
Miles & BooBoo