Lessons from the Yoga Mat by Jody Tunnicliffe

During Yoga NRG Teacher Training and Reading Way of The Peaceful Warrior by Dan Millman I reflected on the disciplines required of Dan and mused over my ability to attain that level of self control.

The biggest thing I took from the book was around the harnessing of the mind to create physical & emotional strength, the spirituality.

Also to feel the mental, emotional, physical response of an event but to then move on, not get caught in the baggage of the emotional story & longing & distress of the event, which is similar to Buddha’s teaching in non-craving, which causes stress & distress in either craving for discomfort or pain to end in bad times or craving for pleasure & happiness to continue in good times, just being in the moment & satisfied without burdening the event with yearning for something else.

It is manifested in overthinking & worrying, which is a common state for many & I have always personally believed that these traits have been an advantage to me as they have provoked me to strive & always be hyper vigilant & prepared for the next goal or priority in my life, which has contributed to me being a high achiever & always reaching the goals I have set, which is a good thing – isn’t it? But when the tools by which goals are achieved are worry, stress & distress, is it really worth it in the value of the journey & the impact on your health, personal relationships & engagement with the world?

I suffer chronic insomnia & always have, it is related to growing up in a dysfunctional environment of neglect, extreme abuse & poverty, which I will not go into, but the outcome as an independent person has been that among other dysfunctional behaviours I work really hard to manage, I do not sleep. I use that time of non sleep to either worry or work. I get up & I work for the 4 or so hours I can’t sleep, which I always thought was very adaptive & functional of me utilising the time in a productive way rather than just lying there worrying. But it too has become a dysfunctional burden.

Yoga NRG Teacher Training has  been rewarding beyond any study I have previously undertaken, as it is not the study of a science or a framework or an approach, it is the study 
of you!

I find my yoga practice has brought me relief & grounding. To use a cliché of yoga, it helps burn off the crazy! It has become part of the lifelong ‘work’ I undertake on myself in an attempt to bring balance & functionality, where this once did not exist.

It is ongoing work & I frequently regress, but I continue & I focus & I learn, & learning to express an emotional response without allowing it to own you, of letting go is my biggest challenge.

I continue to strive towards that as does the Peaceful Warrior.


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