#47 How To Discover Your Inner Desire (It’s Not Always What You Might Think It Is)

I discovered my Sankalpa a few months back, and so far,  it has left some lasting effects.

Now if you don’t know what a Sankalpa is, you’re not alone. For someone who had avoided the concept of mindfulness, depended on substances and its numbing properties to heal me, this was a tough one.

But most yogi-centred websites define a Sankalpa as the ‘intention formed by the heart rather than the mind.’ A desire out of one’s mind is of no challenge, after all.

Discovering your Sankalpa is out of your control-  it unravels, with the help of yoga nidra, a well-known concept within the yoga community that has been practised by the Vedic rishis.  A person’s Sankalpa usually comprises a resolve or resolution (something that is meant to help improve and transform lives mentally, physically and emotionally and spiritually.)

When I started getting into yoga, its ideologies and philosophies started opening up to me. Yoga became more than the Lulu Lemon-wearing, Instagram posing, and tree-hugging cliché people made it out to be.

Minus the group classes, slight desire to purchase adorable yogi-wear and whatnot. Yoga reprogrammed my mind to a different perspective, one I hadn’t seen before.

The spiritual and emotional elements of yoga became a gateway to achieve the momentary ‘still’ state of mind, that I had longed for. The mat, mantras and sounds of the universe helped take the place of the self-victimising and toxicity I enveloped myself in.

There are two types of Sankalpas; one is a statement you can make about something that is already in the present, like ‘I have healed’ or ‘I am content and proud of myself.’ The second type is when you’re setting a goal or intention, helping achieve your eventual ‘ultimate goal.’

I don’t think you figure out which one is yours until you stick through with the practice. Based on the reviews  I’ve read from people who’ve practised it my own experience, it’s safe to say that everyones’ Sankalpa differs.

How does Yoga Nidra helps you discover your Sankalpa?

Yoga Nidra translates to a ‘yogic sleep’, as defined by Intuitive Flow. It’s a type of yoga that requires you to lay on your mat, face-up and comfortably- without movement, for a whole hour. During the session, you’ll be guided by a gentle voice that will guide you to a full body and mind awareness.

Feeling every inch of your body with your brain’s stimulatory senses, and having the ability to immerse in your transition from being awake to sleeping, yet remaining conscious. It’s a more meditative and relaxed type of yoga.

One of Nidra’s benefits is that it gives everyone an opportunity to get to know themselves on a more intimate level. Through this practice, you learn to acknowledge long-held emotions, face overwhelming truths and finally, it harvests your path to wellbeing.

How awareness of my ‘Sankalpa’ refined my way of thinking.

A Sankalpa usually comes in the form of a simple statement, a short sentence or phrase. Before even knowing what yoga nidra could do for me, mid-meditation, I already questioned its effectivity or lack thereof.

Fifteen minutes into the first yoga Nidra practice, after my body laid silently,  my mind revelled in this present momentous glory,  the guru’s voice asked: “What is your Sankalpa?”.

I’m not going to sit here and bullshit you, that probably woke me up because I thought to myself  “What in the fuck is a Sankalpa?”

However, as the guru explained what it was, I promptly envisioned opening up my chest like a wooden drawer does when pulled. Searching the heart’s wants, what it yearns and truly longs for. I almost cried.

Then a statement gradually took shape:

“I vow to get to know, accept and finally love myself.”

The following occurrence then became one of those life-defining-moments I thought one could only ever see in a Julia Roberts movie, but it happened. The mental vision was cloudless.

For the first time since; I first fell in love, lost my first love,  fell in love harder, experienced emotional/physical abuse, gained twelve kilos (affecting my self-esteem), I saw no haze in the darkness. It was clear all along.

All I needed to get out of the forlorn I had shamelessly sat in- was to learn and accept my wants, needs, best interests and yearnings.

It was the simplest yet most overlooked statement in my book.

Ever since that redefining moment, the energy I exuded out to the world attracted new people who have instilled new viewpoints. I have learned to express my inner-most feelings to those who value them and most importantly, I’ve learned to appreciate my newfound constant push for self-growth.

I’m nowhere near fulfilling the Sankalpa I’ve discovered but a friend of mine something worth mentioning. He said, “Knowing and understanding makes everything a whole lot easier. It takes the weight off of your inner dilemmas.” That’s hardly a direct quote, but you get the idea.

If you want to try out yoga nidra, I highly recommend starting with this video. This is the video that helped me immensely.

 

#46 Silence

And now a depth of muteness had taken over,

the one I hadn’t heard in a while.

I thought of fear, but it wasn’t part of me.

 

I let out sighs that echoed in a queue,

A thorough reminder of what was now missing.

I thought of love, but it did not bother me.

 

Through the greys and solecism,

his questions gathered around.

He spoke in apologies but never meant them.

 

This room was the birthplace of emotions,

of poetic violence and misleading comfort.

We loved profoundly but destroyed each other.

 

And so, this silence, it filled the room.

With sounds of freedom, patience and magic

I said goodbye, and I do not regret it.

#45 How To Clear A Stressed and Overwhelmed Mind

Based on what others have told me, it seems that up until a certain point, I was always an optimistic person. I might forget now and then to reflect on what the “old me” would have done in certain situations, but I sure do remember the perception I had of the world then.

Undoubtedly, who I was at fifteen isn’t who I am today, but in moments of grief, or untravelled emotions- I find myself back again, even momentarily.

Here’s how:

Mottos, Mantras, Meaning and Music

Mottos

“Treat others how you want to be treated” and “You must be the change you wish to see in the world”, although both overly used dialogues in chick flicks and motivational books, these two phrases are my mottos. When you remember the words by heart, regardless of whether or not you’ll practice what it preaches, it still leaves you with the awareness of knowing. Being aware of how I wanted to be treated by the people around me, allowed for me to spread the same kind of treatment towards them.

I wanted to be enveloped in the positive energy from the people I loved most. Individuals who pushed me to go out my comfort zone and explore the world I’ve yet to see, to hear appraisals when I achieve goals and to respect me as an equal. No rich or poor, man or woman, no pen versus sword.

Nobody’s perfect, and I sure had moments that I still beat myself up over today. I wish I could extend more and more of what I could offer as a friend to a friend, or as a person to a stranger but it’s a work in progress. Sometimes you will find that not everyone will treat you how you treat them, but that’s the point, you do it anyway. Do it not because you expect to be treated the same way back, but because you’re instilled with peace of mind knowing you’re not the reason someone else cries themselves to sleep at night.

Mantras

Mantras are a sacred articulation of syllables or a group of words in Sanskrit (which are, in my opinion, even more spiritually elevating). Just try chanting “Om” alone in your room and listen to the silence and peace it brings with it. It’s nice if you’re able to familiarise yourself with the specific mantras to either start your day, to seek love or happiness, so on and so forth. However, you also have the option to memorise a phrase that you feel drawn towards, and repeatedly chant it out loud daily.

This website has a few interesting ones for various purposes.

Meaning

Sometimes, even when it seems like you’ve got your whole life decked out and planned, things can go south. This is either a product of our doings, change of mindset or the circumstances that we are put under by society. I wasn’t a stranger to this notion.

Months ago, I only told two people about the shift in my mood, the unhappiness that overshadowed the peace and the lack of care about progressing to the future. I kept denying that I was the victim of this problem. I didn’t want to refer to it as anxiety or depression, but the more I looked into the symptoms, the more it all fit.

Even the people I told would tell me that it was just a phase, and I wanted to believe it, I didn’t want to admit that an optimist could spiral down to a full-on pessimist. But, I realise only today, after finding my meaning, that I heard but didn’t listen to the advice I was given. I fully started immersing myself in this newfound emotion, of sulking and allowing no shift in atmosphere or activity to get me out of the loop I was stuck in.

But maybe I needed to go through that. All those months of sulking were also met with realising what I wanted, what I thought I wanted and what I wanted no part of. Then there it was, with the flick of the switch, I found my meaning. It took incessant amounts of reflecting to discover that I had to act on it, by starting with the mind.

I slowly cleared my minds of any thoughts that welcomed the effacing negativity by accepting that I was ready and that it was time to try and better myself. We all have different meanings, the actual meaning of why we keep pushing through life (when it gets hard). Some have it figured out; others haven’t.

My meaning was and is, my mother and I couldn’t stand the thought of letting the one person who sacrificed her entire life for me, see the way I saw myself (or six feet underground). It just wouldn’t be fair. The meaning of why I keep going is because I won’t stop until she can experience what she never got to, and feel how she wants to explore, no questions asked.

Music

Click this. Enough said.