This month has me thinking about intention. You’re familiar at this point with the structure of my offerings. Whether it’s a weekly yoga class, workshop, or special series, we always begin with an intention that helps to shape the container of our practice space. While each practitioner may relate individually to the intention and derive their own meaning from it, the intention itself provides an elevated focus for the mind and insulation from the overwhelm of optionality and distraction. Having an intention as a reference point and a catalyst is one way we can practice the 6th limb of yoga, dharana.
Dharana means concentration and is the first stage of inner meditation practice. The process is to notice when your mind has moved from your chosen intention and to patiently and persistently guide your mind back to the chosen focal point. Over time there is less separation between the nurtured intention and your experienced reality.
In my personal practice this month, my intention is celebration. I noticed I have a tendency to lean-in to constant improvement and when I accomplish something, I struggle to give myself credit or bask in the enjoyment of it. I’ve been poking around at the root of that tendency and am excited to grow a new way of being.
Just as I had recommitted to this, a sweet exchange with my youngest son laid the lesson out in front of me. I’d like to share it with you:
Yesterday my younger son looked at me with a shy smile on his face. He goes, “Mom, can you even believe this? Does it look like I have tears in my eyes? It’s like I’m about to cry. I’m so proud, I could cry.”
He was DELIGHTED about a structure he had built with magna-tiles. He said, “Can you believe I did that!? Like, I really worked hard and finished it. And it’s my best one ever!”.
It was so sweet. Pure joy and even some amazement at what he had created.
Grace dropped this lesson in my lap through this innocent exchange with my kid at the very time I was ready to receive it.
My takeaway is this:
We’re here to create and share.
It is not helpful to doubt or minimize the brilliance and beauty that is you.
Keep challenging that which says otherwise.
Meghan Hogan, E-RYT 500, CCC-SLP is Lead Faculty for the Yoga Vidya Teacher Training and In-Depth Studies program, a Speech-Language Pathologist supporting preschool children with disabilities and their families, a wife and mother.
Her mission in sharing yoga is to provide caregivers of all walks of life tools for self-care and stress management.