When I was 11, I wrote a letter to myself. At 18, I accidently bumped into it and it was literally the most hilarious and scariest thing I had read. Hilarious, because my language was still an 11-year old that did not even hit puberty yet, scary because it displayed the expectations I had to meet up to. In detail, it elaborated on what I should have accomplished over those 7 years: which school I had to have gone to and graduated from, which instruments I should have played, which basketball team and our achievements, which boys I had to have met, the friends I should still have and left, countries I should have seen and the list went on and on for 2 whole pages.
That I had high-demands of myself really did not come falling out of the sky. Living with such expectations though is trying to fight a war with a kitchen knife. It is a lost cause, you will get hurt, it will not get you anywhere and it will certainly not help you realize those dreams. So for me it was letting go of what my head kept on telling me over the years. Start listening to where my heart wants to go. Unfortunately for me, this heart of mine speaks a combination of Chinese-Indian-Sanskrit and sign language. Understanding and listening to what I really wanted thus appeared to be quite the frustrating time-consuming effort. Next to that, the conversation with my heart was pretty uncomfortable because the voice in my head had been my comrade for ages. It felt abandoned so it started screaming and ranting just to be heard.
But shifting the balance and really feel what I really wanted to do instead of what I can do, should do, must do, was and the biggest relief. It makes me almost uncomfortably at ease of where I am at right now. My head gives me advice and then I consult whether my heart and my feelings agree with it or whether it talks complete B.S. It helps me get into that direction I need to head into. Of course, I am not perfect, I still can be pretty harsh on myself and have some unforgiving mind-fucks that can last for a couple, it has lost its dominance though. That voice is still a friend that helps me to work hard, chase dreams, live hard, not complain, jump valleys and laugh at myself, it is just not my knight in shining armor anymore.
Surfing challenges you, it keeps you sane, it is an addiction but it can be intimidating and scary as well. While living in Bali, I met numerous girls that experience the same challenge: “How can I get over that fear to surf and enjoy bigger waves?”.
The last couple of weeks I have put myself out there, and I get it. The fact is that when you first start surfing the balance between the fear of big waves and the fun you get out of these bigger ones, is completely off. You are intimidated, get smashed, sit out in the line up like an extra in a movie and then you get smashed again. There is clearly more fear than fun. But what I noticed is that by getting paddling out for a more intimidating wave and learning from that experience, this balance is shifting. It is far more fun to surf bigger waves than small ones. You just have heaps of more wave to play with.
So it is about shifting that balance to fun from fear. Each time you paddle out and sit out in the back you will progress. First you just sit and watch. The next time you will start paddling for waves and unavoidably will endure a couple of wipe-outs and take some on the head. This is where you learn that you will be all right. And before you know it, you will have your first bigger wave. And once you get that one, the balance will start shifting. Fear will become far more inferior to the fun you will have with each big wave you take off on. It is just a matter of knowing that you will be ok en enjoy the ride.
While living in paradise for a couple of months now, I am slowly and gradually shifting my focus towards a more balanced life. To be honest, I do not find it particularly easy. There are almost always waves to surf, nice people to meet for breakfast, lunch or dinner, cruise around or just do other stuff, which is a challenge to resist. But if I really want to stay here I need to get that balance in .
Actually, I came to realize that it is not so different from living back home. It is just the other way around. Where at home we had to find a balance to get more personal time in, over here I have to search for the balance to work a bit and resist the temptation of surfing all day every day. In the end, I know that I will be absolutely fine. I have set an intention to do so and even though I love surfing, I will need to work to ensure my presence in this paradise. I can surf every day, even with a job, so nothing bad with getting some work done on the island of the gods.
Sometimes life can get bumpy or we may feel overwhelmed or worried…
We find that inversions help us to gain clarity and put things in perspective.
Headstands are fun! While being upside down you definetely gain a new perspective and you realize that also then you can find balance…
Things may feel messy at times but we remember that it’s about perspective. Balance can be found in any pose. Yoga is an amazing way to find balance. And with practice, just like in yoga you can find peace and balance in any “pose”, in life you can do it too in any “situation”.