It’s Saturday, the first Saturday of 2019, and I’m in bed

I’ve been laying here on my phone for over 2 hours now.

I’ve had a funny chat about dreams with my amazing creative accountability buddies, wished a friend happy birthday, bought a couple new online professional development courses and read up on my personal numerology for this coming year.

I thought about getting up to do my Sadhana, but haven’t actually moved yet.

Can you blame me though?

View of my bedroom from my bed

It’s dark, cool and quiet

My king size bed has a topper and feather bed… And 6 pillows.

I do not make it easy on myself!

Did someone say comfort addict??

It probably comes as no suprise that discipline is the #1 personal development challenge for this contentedly sensual Taurus.

I absolutely LOVE doing nothing

I am never bored.

I am constantly fascinated and intrigued.

It could be how a piece of fabric feels bruising my fingers as I trace each clothing rack lightly while walking through a store, or the way the combination of my polarized sunglasses and the tint on my sister’s car windows turns the big blue Colorado sky into rainbows – but I’m always discovering something marvelous with my senses.

I take my time.

I make things have meaning for myself, and it’s a marvelous way to live.

But… That also means I struggle when I can’t take my time to make my meaning.

For years this has meant dissapointment after dissapointment with regards to my goals

I just wanted to be “better.”

I thought if I could “fix” myself and just become more task or result oriented I would be a more successful person, one who isn’t constantly battling against themselves and their goals.

Unsurprisingly, I failed.

Every time I have tried to solve my problems by trying to force myself into systems created by others, I fail spectacularly.

Yet here I am, still in bed, smiling.

My kitteh babeh Lucas is enjoying our lazy morning too

And it’s not just because of Mr. Fluffy Cutie Boots above either.

Thinking back over this past week

It’s the fact that I have done my Sadhana every morning, despite my comfy bed.

It’s the fact that I took all of December to find a gentle way to wake up early.

It’s the fact that as of tomorrow I will have successfully completed my first week of posts for this blog.

It’s all the little things I’m doing to redefine success for myself.

Because, if success means I don’t get to lay-in with my kitteh babehs or sensually feel into my moments, I’m not sure I really want it anyway.

My success will be holistic and sustainable, for ME

I may never be the person who jumps out of bed in the morning, but I can celebrate the fact that I have a big comfortable bed every morning – and I do.

Perhaps taking my time and making my meaning doesn’t have to be in opposition to my own personalized discipline.

Maybe my discipline looks more like learning how to gently wake up early and snuggle kitties before the time I actually need to be doing my Sadhana.

And I’m okay with that.

Actually, I LOVE it!

Sammi is the best snuggler

So today, that’s what optimal mastery means to me.

Taking my time.

Making my meaning.

Doing my Sadhana – eventually…

I was writing something inspired for you about gratitude – and it got deleted lol… So, you can all just be thankful for this picture instead:

Sammi invading mommy’s Sadhana this morning

That little creature is Sammi, my tortuous shell ball of furry splendor. I’m not quite sure if Sammi has ever had any complaints or worries in his life, which is saying a lot since his first few months were rough before I rescued him. This guy and his brother Lucas help me remember to be grateful, even when artestry is lost to split-second thumb slips… You are welcome for the cuteness. More to come of my kitteh babehs this year for sure 🙂

To tell the truth, I have been feeling pretty down on myself today. After waking up this morning and realizing I didn’t get something posted yesterday, I felt like a bit of a failure. I have a tendency to be hard on myself even when I do things well and I can really start to spiral when I make mistakes.

My perfectionism and self doubt have been screaming at me each time I dare let my mind wonder to what I would be posting today, “why even bother?” Yet, that’s exactly why I have to write this.

I have to keep posting, not because it feels good and makes all my insequrities dissapear, but because it does the opposite.

Resistance training of a different kind

Recently I attended an incredible retreat called Apotheosis by the wonderful souls at High Existence, and one of the many discoveries that was made there was that to achieve the greatest personal development a person should lean into their resistance. This is kind of a spin on facing your fears or “eating the frog,” and essentially we discovered that pain, discomfort and other undesirables are often (if not exclusively) indicators that something needs attention. So, my monkey-mind about my inadequacy? It’s actually a good sign.

So let’s lean in. Of course I am not the best daily blogger, I’ve been doing this for four days. Forgetting to post yesterday isn’t a failure, but letting that misstep completely derail me would be. Self-sabotage often comes at a cost of the best intentions. Posting every day is uncomfortable for me. I have doubts about this post, the posts I will write this year and even the few posts I have already written. This is merely an indicator of my own perception of myself, and that won’t be changed by my giving up.

Gratitude for my mistakes gives me opportunities to rediscover my development

Yesterday’s stumble led to today’s reflection and ultimately I believe it will continue to help me discover the patterns and conditioning that are truly holding me back. It’s the push through, the not giving up even when I want to, that will make this time different from other attempts that were self-sabotaged by my ignorance and desire to avoid the discomfort of my doubts. Now, armed with a curiosity to see just how far my resistance can take me, I’m going to mark yesterday’s lapse as an absolutely essential part of this journey.

This powerful shift of perspective has begun to create other shifts as well. Rather than the depressive energy of allowing my doubts to defeat me, I am revitalized and excited by defying them. Instead of posting just another throw together piece, I am inspired to make better content that reflects all of this meaning.

img-20181231-wa0000352203751.jpeg
Tattoo on my left arm

This journey of optimal mastery is one I’ve been on for a while, and it will continue my entire life.

As a student of life, I will always be a novice at something. I will always have more to learn.

Getting comfortable at being uncomfortable will only benefit me. Learning to accept and even celebrate resistance will ultimately give me back those times in my life when I am uncertain, frustrated or in pain. Training myself to look at my doubts as opportunities for growth and my failures as stepping stones to my success will help me to continually gain momentum no matter what difficulties come my way. Not letting my discomfort derail me from my commitments and goals is the type of resilience and discipline I want to integrate into my life.

And that’s what optimal mastery means to me, today 😘

Here’s to being better than perfect –

Mayryanna

Waking up this morning I realized I never posted yesterday! Ah! I had taken pictures while making my dinner and had every intention but alas, I forgot… Well, I suppose it’s a good thing this project is about persevering despite imperfections right?!

Now, without further ado, behold Butternut Squash in all it’s delicious glory:

I believe this may have been one of the prettiest squashes I’ve ever seen. The pictures do no justice for the vibrancy of its orange! And it also made some pretty tasty tacos!

I had never prepared squash this way but really enjoyed learning a new recipe from my Sakara 10-Day Reset. I will certainly be making it again. Delicious!

Self-doubts, perfection paralysis, blissful ignorance – it’s all a part of the process for optimal mastery. This journey isn’t about having it all together, but rather, the work of getting there. So, despite my inner cringe, here is an unscripted video update from me:

To expand on and clarify the mention of my body fat percentage, health and weight have always been a concern of mine, but inconsistency with exercise and diet as well as hormonal complications have made it difficult to maintain a better physique even at my most successful (which has still never meant reaching my goal weight). I am beginning this year focused on daily habits rather than my health goals per se, but the two are in fact quite linked. My intention is to build in sustainable habits rather than schedule things in as tasks to be accomplished. I don’t want to have to force myself to be healthy, I want to find a lifestyle that produces health in me and never worry about it again! That’s what optimal mastery means to me in this case.

I have attempted a variety of fads and could understand the logic behind them all, but what my new goals are based in is simply what I feel aligns best with my values: a raw-vegan diet, a daily spiritual practice that includes meditation and yoga, as well as a bit of vigorous activity each day such as a HIIT/weights workout or a hike. I believe that by making these practices habits I will have no other alternative but to produce better heath in myself.

Now, this is going to be an adjustment. I have been fluctuating between vegetarian and vegan for a couple years now and have been a raw vegan before, always giving up because of convenience. The fact is that eating well takes time and effort. You have to plan the meals, buy the food (fresh) and then still prepare it all before you actually eat. It eliminates the option for emotional/boredom eating almost entirely but it is an investment as well. That’s why I’m starting the year off with a 10-Day Reset from Sakara Life. I’m excited to have some recipes to get me started on the right foot and I love the added motivation I get from the program and products.

As far as the other end of things, I am building in my exercise habits slowly. I have a tendancy to go really hard until I push too far and have to dial back and get discouraged. Not this time! I began waking myself up earlier in December and have added a modest Sadhana practice of the Basic Spinal Energy kriya and a Adi Shakti mantra meditation, as well as a commitment to squat my max weight (1-6 reps, 3 sets), to my morning routine for January. I will be adding on to these habits with each subsequent month and hope that the slow build will ultimately render my new habits and routines sustainable. I also got another fitness tracker because I am much more active when I’m aware of how active I am (living with grandma as her companion and caregiver, it’s easy to sit too much if I’m not careful – grandma’s activity level is not anywhere near where mine should be lol).

Here’s to giving it my best, even when that means taking my time to get the results I want and having to learn how to maintain both patience and momentum! Blessed New Year everyone – thanks for taking this ride with me 🙏 I’m looking forward to a great one!