I was recently away on a dance retreat where part of the focus was on how to build a daily practice. Practice, here, being something that you do, day in and day out, doesn’t matter what it is, that brings you into relationship with yourself and how you are truly doing. And by truly, I mean beyond the masks we wear for other people and even ourselves.
As you might already have experienced, carving out time day after day for yourself, can be difficult to impossible to accomplish. And yet, deep down, we all know that when we give this level of care to our lives, it is life-changing. Why it is then that so many of us struggle to get there? Of course, there are many, many reasons; too busy, don’t know how to start, don’t feel we are worth it, afraid of what we will lose if we change, and on and on it goes. We could get stuck in what keeps us from getting there, or, we could look at what it is that does get us there.
In a word, what gets us there day after day through good times and bad, is devotion. The intention to willingly and humbly give yourself to something greater than yourself. It does not matter what that something is; God, your community, a cause, service in the world, family, a creative endeavor. What matters is that you get over yourself! What has helped me to get over myself and get to a daily practice is my children. It was and continues to be the intention to be as clear and healthy as I can be for them. Interestingly enough, over time this devotion to them has spilled over to include me and every facet of my life. What I started out doing for another has blessed me in ways I could never have imagined or known to ask for. And therein lies the magic of devotion. For when we get past ourselves, we are returned to ourselves and the world, happier and more complete.
Today, what promise to practice could you make to yourself that was born out of devotion?