Saturday, December 31, 2011

A New Beginning

Welcome to 2012! I am still a bit in shock that this year has arrived. It feels like only yesterday I was writing a post about my intention (rather than resolution) to stay open to all the possibilities New Zealand held in store. Now, back in the United States, it is time to reflect on that and set a new intention for 2012, a new chapter for sure.

I wrote in the 2011 New Year’s post about not knowing where I would be living 5 days after arriving in New Zealand. I ended up being invited to stay where I lived the first four nights, and that home turned into a friendship and eventually a house-sitting opportunity. I tell this story not because it matters to anyone where I lived while in New Zealand, but it perfectly illustrates what being open to new possibilities brings into life. It brings us opportunities we never imagined possible, but that open doors to places the universe wants us to go. My 10.5 months in New Zealand was opportunity after opportunity like that. 

For me, 2012 is full of new adventures, the most obvious, of course, being the new job. As I mentioned in the first post about the new job, I have no idea how this is going to go. The first week was rough, really rough, but it was only the first week. Going forward, however, seems scary and unknowable, and not in the exciting way that was the new possibilities of a new country, especially one as beautiful as New Zealand. But there is a different kind of excitement and opportunity that comes with doing the work I have been preparing to do for nearly half of my life.

So this year’s intention is to trust myself. It was difficult to even type that. It was difficult to trust myself enough to think it possible to trust myself going forward.

But this is where the practice, the yoga, becomes the most important. For years, I have been growing the yoga bucket, filling it with tools that can hopefully work when it really matters. The real test is not whether we can practice when the going is easy. The real test is not whether we can meditate at a retreat or on a mountain top away from life. The real question is whether we can remember to respond rather than react when we feel like life is beating us over the head with a baseball bat. It is in those moments that it is most necessary to have a full yoga bucket.

And as we learn to live in a state of composure in the most difficult circumstances, we learn to trust ourselves. In many ways, learning to trust ourselves is learning to be open to internal possibilities rather than external possibilities. Rather than trusting the external world to present opportunities, we trust ourselves to know what needs to be done. So, I guess this year's intention is not so different from last year's, but the focus, the nexus is slightly different. 

For me, yoga has made trusting myself (and the universe) easier, but certainly not easy. Prior to leaving New Zealand, I had started a daily meditation practice. It was just ten minutes per day, but I can feel a huge difference having let it slide these past three weeks. That is part of my necessary yoga bucket, the refill I need to go inside enough to trust myself. So, while I do not want to make a resolution to meditate every day, I put forward this intention: to trust myself and the path I am on. I'm going to stay open to trusting the universe to present the how. 

What is your intention for this new year? Happy 2012! May the year be full of love and peace.


© Rebecca Stahl 2011, all rights reserved. 


  1. Through the practice of yoga, we become aware of the interconnectedness between our emotional, mental and physical levels. Thanks for sharing this nice blog.

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