I have, over the years, been confronted by people in my community who decided to go in direct competition against me. I try to take it in stride, but sometimes it is irritating.
I saw a meme the other day that reminded me that, the eagle, a mighty and noble bird, will occasionally be pestered by crows. One can see the image https://pin.it/4mIPCMA of a crow hanging on the back of the eagle and aiming at its neck feathers. But the eagle is not bothered. It will simply rise and rise in altitude until the crow can no longer stay because it cannot breathe at such altitudes, and it lets go.
That is a fitting metaphor that I have tried to hold in the fore of my mind. How do you handle such situations? Do you use this mindset elsewhere in your life?
I have never opted for anything but the high roads, simply because those are my standards. Thusly, I have been rewarded with amazing people who come into the studio to embark on a journey with a genuine instructor.
I have been interested in the idea of wellbeing since my university days. Various elements came together to help me see that life on Earth could be so rich -- and with reflection, a little effort and creativity, we could make the most of our time here.
For me that meant keeping healthy through:
1. Sane and vegetarian eating. Looking to nature and traditional ways to guide my eating (fortunately my second mother was from Madras, India, and since my earliest days, I watched her prepare many delicious vegetarian dishes, then she taught me when I was a young adult.) Staying away from fads and extremism...knowing that in another year there would be yet another new "super-food" to take the place of the last one! My parents also taught me the virtue of real food, the pleasures of eating foods in season and local (my mother always took us to the farmsteads to buy directly from the farmers, or we would even pick our own) and the joy of sharing a meal with family and friends...staying for hours on Sunday around the table, lunch going from around noon-4.
2. Time for my mind. For me that means time for stimulating it through good conversation, reading books or articles (I do prefer non-fiction, but occasionally get in a novel.) In addition to expanding my mind, it is equally important to center it through meditation. I do not practice formal meditation, but I take time daily to have stillness and to try to calm my thoughts and enjoy time spent in silence and contemplation.
3. Attention on my body through movement. Exercise and stretching, but also walking around, getting out and being in the garden, or in the woods or mountainside. I have danced since the age of 5, that is like breathing for me. Then as a little girl, I went through my parents' library and discovered this big, beautiful illustrated book on yoga. I would open it up on the living room carpet and choose a posture and try, try, try until I got it. In my late 30's I discovered Chinese Martial Arts. This was a whole new discipline that expanded my concept of what the human body is capable of doing. It continues in the tradition of strengthening and stretching as well as putting my mind into my body to achieve desired results.
I have my ups and downs. For over a year, I was in a very strong depressive state, having lost both my mothers and my former mother-in-law in the span of one year. I found it hard to align the three aspects, I found it hard to do much of anything except the basics. I turned in circles, but eventually found my way out. In order to give others care, one must first care for themselves. So here I am, back on track, once again feeling a great balance between the 3 aspects of health fueling my sense of wellbeing, so that I may in turn, share it with those who come to me.
Coming of Age
So, way back in time, I opened my own Pilates studio in the north Houston, Texas, suburb of Kingwood. While deciding upon names for my business, I was also deciding on names for my future child! My pregnancy with Rémi was great and unfettered. My studio seemed to grow at the same rate as my midsection. I was blessed to develop a wonderful clientele interested in creating change in their bodies while observing mine (albeit a very different means of change!)
I gave sessions up until the very day that my labor began. Post delivery I was like most women, exhausted and out of sorts. But I had the benefit of knowing how to access my core, and using Eve Gentry's Pilates Fundamentals, I regained functional strength in the weeks following my son's birth. Rémi spent much time in the studio and was present over the years for sessions. If you stand still long enough, he will come over and help readjust your posture and authoritatively give out cues to reinforce the correction.
My darling son has grown into a young man. He is 17 and a half, towers over me, is a beautiful person inside and out, and about to embark on a new life path. I see all of the parallels between traits my son is bestowed with and what Pilates develops: inner strength emanating from the core, flexibility and plasticity, and most importantly, the quest for balance.
Best of luck my son. I am always here for you, but I am confident in your abilities and I know that you will soar!