Start Small

Thinking of setting goals for Year 2018 but not sure where to start? Start small by looking into yourself first. What can make you happier, lighter at heart, free from negative attitudes and thoughts…

Most of us are multi-tasking all the time. Electronic devices play a vital role in enabling us to accomplish many tasks within a short period. But…it has definitely given us the opportunity to bury our heads into the devices (especially our phones) and ignore what is happening in our mind, body and surroundings. If you take a look around you when you are on your way to the office, in the MRT or bus, having lunch at the cafeteria or in a crowded lift, you will notice mobile devices which we cannot live without will mostly cause us to avoid eye contact, fail to notice if someone needs the seat more than us, miss the floor that you have pressed in the lift, hogging while walking up the stairs or while crossing the road as we multi-task to check text messages, facetime taking for granted motor vehicles will give way to pedestrians. Worst of all, drivers doing the same checking or texting messages while driving and fail to notice pedestrians.

It is difficult to quieten down your mind if you are constantly on the run and occupy your mind with anything that is connected to the media world. You can start small by taking some time away from “stuff” which is not priority in your life and attend a yoga class. As you will need focus your attention during the yoga practise to move your body with each breath you take, you will realise that there are no devices around you to constantly remind you of schedules and no disturbance or text messages while you are on the mat.

You will also notice that it is not that scary to quieten down your mind by taking this small step to attend a yoga class. You may make another small change the following day, for example try to avoid making negative comments over small matters which are not really important. Keep making small changes every day of your life. It will take time, but every step in the right direction makes it easier to take the next step.

Many of us may wish in the New Year that our family, loved ones and ourselves are in the best of health, which is far more important than having the best of wealth that the world can give us. Start by simply getting fit and healthy but don’t be overwhelmed by it. Be mindful of your expectations while you practise yoga or any form of workout as moving with ease during initial practise maybe enough to begin the practise. Be aware that range of motion on your joints will depend on your age but it can also depend on a number of medical conditions such as ankylosis spondylitis, osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, juvenile RA, cerebral palsy etc etc.

The joy of being able to spend some quality time to practise on the mat gives you the freedom to detach from an object, issue, or another person. There are feelings that tell you “If I don’t have that, I won’t be whole.” When you begin living a life that starts small such as happiness from an internal place rather than to be happy depending on external conditions, then you have understood detachment.

Be faithful in small things because it is in them that your strength lies” – Mother Teresa