THE BASICS - What + Why.
Possibly because the sound of the word "basic" is itself a little uninspired, "the basics" are the very thing I see people either avoid or skip altogether. If it were not so perplexing it would be kind of funny.
Since my kids have been very little, I have asked them how they want to feel for the day. This started as we would be on our way to daycare or school. Before you jump in and tell me they may not have understood how they wanted to feel, that was something I was very much aware of. So it was always light-hearted and often silly.
Somedays we would want to feel like unicorns, other days we would want to feel like marshmallows. It was about slowly and over time sharing with them that they have the choice in how they want to feel all across their day. In any moment, the good ones and the more tricky ones.
It was sharing with them the practice of setting their intention for the day.
It was an insight into them having power over their own choices.
As they have aged, their words and understanding of what it means to choose how you want to feel have developed, and they can now lean into that when they feel it is right for them. It is a basic practice that anyone can do or start at any age.
This was an example of just one of the basic practices that can help positively impact you each day. There are a number of basic practices, all can in their own way assist you and your daily wellbeing. The best part about these basic practices is that the only thing you need is yourself. The other great thing about them is that most of them can be done before you rise out of bed for the day for your first cup of tea.
So what are the basics and who can use them?
Intention is a basic practice that can be used by anyone.
Breathwork is a basic practice that can be used by everyone.
Stretching is a basic practice that a vast number of people can use from a very early age.
Balance is a basic practice that a vast number of people can use from an early age.
Journaling is a basic tool that can be used by people who can hold a pen. You don't need to be able to write, you can draw.
Stillness is a basic practice that is accessible to everyone.
How many of these basic practices do you use in a day?
How many of these basic practices were you taught as a child?
How many of these basic practices have you ever tried?
How many of these have you taught your children?
Share with me this... How then do you practice them if you have not been taught them?
Over the next few weeks the Arlais newsletter - Soul Journal will take you through each of these basic practices and help you to share them with others if you feel you want to.
If you know better, you can do better right?.... So let's get clear on how to do the basics so you can begin creating your own unique practice. Be sure that you have signed up for the Soul Journal so you don't miss any of them.
WHY they are useful, practical, and helpful is because each basic practice gives you back more than it requires from you. When you set your intention for the day it helps give you guide rails, when you remember your breath it helps to bring ease back into more challenging situations, when you have stretched it helps to release stale energy and built-up tension in the body so you feel more freedom. Balance ensures you feel grounded, journaling works to keep you moving in the direction of your goals and stillness helps you to expand and discover a greater version of yourself.
In my experience, people are doing well if they have covered one of these basic practices in a day.
Yes, that's right, just one. I truly believe that has more to do with their perception of what it means to practice than it does with the desire for them to feel the benefits of each basic practice. That perception being, that to have a practice you must dedicate blocks of time to it. This is simply not the case.
A practice is about you and for you. For you to feel the benefits it must always work with you.
When we hear the word practice there are potentially some things that happen to people.
They feel like there is a specific amount of time that will be required of them in order to achieve their "practice" They feel they can not dedicate every single day to the practice they choose and then they feel a sense of disappointment or guilt if they miss a day.
A practice is just that - practice. It is not something that should feel heavy, it should always feel good in often a curious way. For example, if you had a day or more not practicing your basic or basics of choice when you do choose to come back to it - be curious about how it feels compared to the last time you did it.
By learning these basics and then creating a practice of your own, over time you can feel the compounding benefits they will bring to your daily life. If you are curious and want to learn the how, when, and why of each basic practice, then please make sure you are on the Soul Journal mailing list so that each Sunday you can learn more of how to feel like your best self.