Ai Tog…

Are you for real?…. Enough said.

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Yoga with Bella

So my new favourite thing is yoga. I simply love my two new pink yoga blocks and my bubblegum blue yoga mat. The thing is, Bella (our cat) seems to love it even more than what I do!

I suspect it might be the spongy texture of the yoga mat. As soon as I take out the mat to start doing some asanas, then Bella is on the mat – before I can even get into a tadasana!

Then to add insult to injury, Bella then proceeds to show me how it should really be done. Never mind downward dog…. Downward cat anyone?

Ohm Shanti. Namaste 🙏🏾

Not-a-failure

Image credit: https://www.management-issues.com/opinion/5882/if-you-want-to-succeed-get-used-to-failure/

Failure is a good thing. We’ve all heard this before. No one can deny that failing builds character. It builds resilience. It builds problem solving capabilities and it can make one a more compassionate, a valuable individual to the benefit of society at large. In that way failure promotes growth.

It’s noteworthy though, that the word ‘failure’ implies that something went wrong. Either we did something or we did not do something, when we could have done something different = failure.

Against this backdrop, I think that we often confuse failing with something else. I actually can’t define that ‘something else’ yet ….. I just don’t have the term for it yet although I know it’s a tangible concept. It also leads to growth but it is not failure. Let’s call it ‘not-a-failure. It is confused with failure because the process towards growth is so similar to when you failed at something.

In the case of ‘not-a-failure‘ a person might even say ‘but I tried my best but I did not succeed’. This means that what you tried was wrong. This emphasizes the person’s effort and the fact that they did not get the reward for that effort. When this happens, most human beings involuntarily turn against themselves and believe that they have failed ….when in fact they did not, because in cases of not-a-failure, the situation was just outside of one’s control.

Ok Ja what I’m saying might like waffle but let me use real examples from my own life to explain…

The job I took, after I finished studying my Masters degree. It was a disaster. I just didn’t fit. There were tons of variables that played a role including an insecure micromanaging supervisor. I tried my best but eventually resigned after a year. I felt like a failure…. but did I really fail? Fast-forward a few years and I ended up in my dream job, teaching at a University. Resigning from that job freed me in terms of time, to do things which gave me the experience I needed to apply for my current job.

My marriage. I worked so hard to save it. I was devastated, shattered when my ex-husband left me. There are things that I know I could have done differently but I think that truthfully, the majority of what played out was simply just out of my control. Looking back I see that no matter who said or did what, we were both just not mature enough to manage the situation in a way that would change the eventual outcome, which was a divorce. Failure? Yes, No… there was more out of my control than in my control. Growth yes definitely. In retrospect, failure not. Similar too, other relationships since my divorce. I have the tendency to want to think I’ve failed because each time I’ve genuinely opened up and allowed myself to be vulnerable. When one is openly vulnerable and you don’t achieve a successful outcome then you feel like failure. The same would apply to sporting activities, work or other projects or even friendships that don’t work out even after you tried your best.

The ‘not-a-failure‘ concept really is an intense form of disappointment. Disappointment is a result of failure but, importantly, it’s not always because of failure. The mistake that I think many human beings make is associating all our disappointments with failure. Our brains seem to be hardwired into tricking us into believing that all our disappointments are all failures! How unkind we are to ourselves 😔

The bottom line for me with all of this is that I need to remember to be kinder to myself when I feel disappointment. Not medicate disappointments with self-pity, or anger, humiliation or shame. I need to medicate myself with kindness and reject any self deprecating thoughts which tell me that I have failed.

Essentially, that is the act of surrendering control over something I never had control over in the first place!

Endgame

So it’s almost that time again. #Excitals

Tickets are booked. I can hardly wait! The minions are supposed to have a maths lesson that Thursday evening but we’re canceling it. It’s all about priorities!

My minions and I are hard core Avengers fans – anything MCU actually! It started a long time ago when my boy was a wee babe and he had a thing for Spiderman. Even when he was under a year old, it was clear that Spiderman was his greatest hero. Some thought that he would outgrow it but he didn’t.

There’s a part of me that’s nervous about the movie. We all know what a horror movie Infinity War turned out to be. It was traumatic. Emotionally tumultuous. We were psychologically scarred. I needed counseling after that movie – I kid you not. We left the cinema in silence and with red watery eyes. We went through the motions… Shock, Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Depression.

I would describe it as the perfect movie to watch on Halloween 🎃 👻 if you looking for something to scare and sadden you.

But in true Avengers style, we take courage. We lift our chins and our bruised and battered hearts. And so the rest of the motions followed… Acceptance.

And once again there is Hope.

Endgame. Only 21 more sleeps to go 😄

Mother and Daughter Goals

I’ve run plenty half marathons. Cool medals, amazing times. My best one ever was running the Two Oceans in 2016 with my brothers and sister-in-law. Now “that best one” will share best place in my heart with the one that I ran with my mom this weekend.

See, this weekend my family did our annual family getaway weekend – always centred around a running event. We’ve been to Knysna thrice and Langebaan thrice before too. A new development is that my mom, who previously was a solid supporter, joined a running club and started doing races since July last year as well!

 

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So this year she joined our running pack. I’m totally stoked, elated and chuffed to say I finished a half marathon with Momma Bear.

Treasured family moments

 

Rainy Monday mornings

So summer has officially left us in Cape Town. That’s ok. Transition is a friend, not a foe.

I must admit though that I was very surprised at the heavy downpour we’ve had since this morning. But the rain brings blessings along with it. It washes everything clean.

There’s a peaceful feeling about this rainy Monday morning. Hearing the rain fall down outside. There’s lots to be thankful for. Coffee and reflection. Lots of stuff to do, but everything will happen in its time. What will be, will be. Welcome Autumn 🍂…

Namaste 🙏🏾

And Bella agrees. She says that she loves the rain 🌧