This week I'm reflecting on the work of Donna Farhi in Bringing Yoga to Life. You can read previous posts here:
Day 1: Box of Monsters
Day 2: Relationships
Day 3: Sitting Quietly
Day 4: Pandora's Box
Today is the last day of Donna Farhi week and I just want to take a moment to thank the people who've read my posts, but most of all, to thank Donna for her decades of dedication to the yoga field.
Today's quote and reflection is about dharma. I feel like I came out of the womb saying, "Universe, what's my purpose in life?" so I'm really excited to chew on this.
"How do we know whether a path or action is our dharma? Our dharma is almost always the option we choose last because it is the most challenging."
One of the things this makes me think about is the work of Sue Frederick and Dan Millman around life purpose. I've studied both of their teachings and they say very similar things: the stuff we are here to learn is going to challenge us. If it came easily on day one, we wouldn't need to learn it.
Our natural tendencies seem like the path to follow right? For example, my tendency is toward a lack of structure. When I follow my tendencies, dishes pile up and laundry goes undone. Things get messy. That's my tendency, but the thing is, I don't feel good when I follow it. It feels natural when I'm doing it but in the long-run, it doesn't serve me.
When I build structure and routines in my life, it is hard. Those things don't come naturally to me, but when I push myself a bit to keep things in order, I feel better. When my external environment is clear, it helps me feel clear inside.
Another example for me is around sleep. My tendency is to stay up too late being all weird and creative and to get up at the last possible minute in the morning after hitting snooze. But again, I don't really feel good about myself or life when I do that. Lately, I've been putting my phone on the other side of the room and waking up at 6:15 in the morning without hitting snooze. This doesn't come easily to me, but when I do it, I feel really good about myself and it starts my day on the right foot.
Our dharma is our purpose. That doesn't only apply to a career. This is so important! I work as a career intuitive coach and I'm here to tell you that finding the "right" career is a myth. Yes, there are some fields that you are much better suited to than others. But in general, you can serve your purpose in any number of different careers. What's more important is the attitude and mindset that you bring to your career. And FYI-your career won't fix you. If you have broken space inside of yourself that need to be dealt with, the only thing that will fix them is doing hard self-reflection that needs to be done. I notice more and more that people place all manner of pressure onto a career. They're miserable, and they believe it's because of their job, when really, it's because they are resisting looking inside of themselves. Careers, in short, are easy scapegoats.
Take a look at dharma from a bigger perspective. Are you taking care of yourself? Your body? Your mind? Your spirit? To me, this is the first place where we can start to live our dharma.
I just love this quote though, because it reminds me that I'm not behind schedule, you know? None of us are. We're right on time.
I'm curious how others define dharma and if this idea of arriving at your dharma last makes sense to you? It's certainly true for me.
Thanks for reading. Namaste friends. Have a great weekend.