Today I was struck by an icky feeling. I’ll call it, the comparison trap. At some awful point in life, we are told to accept the fact that there will always be people out there who are better than you. It’s called The Competition. As a kid, if I wasn’t on the winning team, I’d quit the sport. Something inside me just couldn’t handle competition. And yet, in business, people talk about competition a lot; it makes me cringe.
In yoga, there is only One. We are all One. SO, ultimately the idea of competition is just something we made up along the way to enhance the reality of the game we are all playing called ‘life.’ And I too, being human and all, fall prey to the ego shattering meltdown of finding out how well The Competition is doing, ‘She had like, 30 people in her class the other night…’
My heart flutters into a frenzy, the world that taught me it’s dog eat dog and to watch out for those who are out to bring me down pulses through my veins. The flurry in my heart continues. I begin to feel like a lost little girl. It is the trap of specialness. You’re either winning or losing.
Then enter doubt (and a smidge of totally fucking insanity): Why am I never enough, why am I never there, with the in crowd, the happy, successful people? Why can’t I ever win? What am I doing? How come everyone else is doing so well, where do they get the energy? What is this empty, sickening feeling? I’m such a horrible, fat failure…Why bother? I’ll never be happy. I’ll never be important. Just give up. I might as well crawl into a hole and fade away.
It’s amazing to watch really, within a few short, percussive breaths, I have gone from a little flutter of insecurity to feeling like a wasted piece of nothingness; someone who doesn’t deserve a shred of joy or happiness. Well done Mind.
And this is why I meditate daily, to save me from a totally insane mind, that will either have me thinking I am the shit (like an awesome celebrity guru) or the other kind of shit (the one that smells and nobody wants to go near.) As soon as I manage to catch my crazy mind taking me down some undesirable shaft, I have a flashing moment of clarity, an inner wisdom that says, ‘go sit.’ So, I do. My life and practice has brought me to a place where despite the insanity, I know there are times when I just gotta sit this shit out. Consciously surrender it for release and then have a bubble bath.
Time to go deeper; be brave and more honest, Molly.
So, over the last year, I have been facing myself BIG TIME and been letting go of lots of stuff. All good that this work is, with every elevated feeling of release, soon will follow an intense flow of yet another feeling of inadequacy. This time, ‘twas the nasty feeling of jealousy due to comparison. I can feel myself letting go of the idea of being a yoga teacher. Something about it doesn’t really sit with me and deep down inside, it never really has. Numero uno: Straight up, I don’t like the idea of teacher & student, levels, higher & lower, etc. Okay, admittedly I have issues with authority. It’s likely that on some level I feel disempowered and therefore resent anything outside me telling me what to do. Mostly, for a long time, when people tell me what to do or worse, how to be, a little voice inside my head says, ‘fuck you.’ An untransformed aspect of me deeply loathes our current paradigm of power over and system of control that engages in this impoverished mentality. And yet, here I am on the road to so-called enlightenment and I so easily fail into the murky waters of the comparison trap. Oh God! The moment the flutter arises, I see it. Then I must cover myself, and pretend to be happy for this other yoga teacher, like,’ well done! That’s great that so many people are attending yoga, woohoo!!’ When secretly, a sudden inner thud, ‘ I have failed. I have just plain failed at life. I will never get my legs that high, or hips that open, or make as a good a poster, or look that toned in Sweaty Betty apparel. Argh!!’ Something within me moans at my limitedness and my lack of drive. I WILL NEVER BE GOOD ENOUGH!!!!!!!!!!
The pull inward to ‘LET GO’ baffles and scares me.
‘God, damnit, I have let go enough, how much more is there? What will become of meeeeee!? What am I supposed to dooooooo!?!?’
I consciously surrendered a long time ago, I was about 19, but lest I say, the road IS long. Never ending possibly. And having begun the ‘spiritual’ path of surrendering my will to that little (super powerful and beautiful) voice inside, honestly, sometimes it really pisses me off. Why is it not straight forward? Why can’t I just be enlightened already and stop this endless lifetime saga crap. Feeling the petty human emotions of jealousy and anger just make me feel small and tirelessly fed up with myself. My ego is fading away and its pitiful attempts to come back are totally wasted on me now. No one can ultimately help me, but everyone is here to teach me more about myself and Oneness.
What else can I do but write it all out in an endless rant of no beginning and no end, attempting to make sense of my seemingly meaningless human emotions. I get to this point where I really don’t care anymore. I cannot be anyone else but me, and I want to be honest about it all. Stop pretending to have it all sorted out and like I’ve found the answers. Because I haven’t. The truth is, it feels relentless. Like an abyss of chaos and pain with freckles of light to remind us there is hope.
I just want to be free.
My boyfriend can tell something is up and he’s like, ‘well, what’s your goal?’ Blood begins to boil, and I think,’ please, for the love of God, leave me alone. Leave now before I growl at you.’ God forbid I attack an innocent bystander. It’s my mind that’s driving me insane right now, not his.
However, from where I am, I am sooooo tired of goals, and targets and marketing and part of me fears becoming all the things I hate about the world. Money driven business woman, pusher, poser, try hard, egotistical hypocrite. Oh God, Help me! And there IS another honest truth. I pray, lots. A Course in Miracles has got be bibled the fuck up-ed, big time. ‘Please God, take this petty human emotion from me and transform it into something beautiful…c’mon, dude! Seriously, this feels like the worst. I don’t want this feeling any more. I just want to feel love and happiness all the time, is that too much to ask?’
Suddenly, I remember that I didn’t choose Yoga. It came to me as a way out of the life I was living back then. The practice has served me and helped me outgrow my old twisted self, whom I now look at mostly with love, though sometimes I still shudder at the stuff that I used to get up to (more forgiveness work to do.) I taught myself how to love again through practicing yoga and there is more and more and more to find out. But as I journey back to love, yoga’s commercial grip lessons and I feel the lure of ‘celebrity yogi’ waning with every tap of my key board and alienating skinny yoga girl mag.
I do not want a label attached to my name…my name is enough. I am enough. The I am, that we all are, is more than enough, because it’s everything. It’s One. I am not a something. I am. We are all our own yoga. We are all our own; energy, being, universe, Divine expression.
And then, I quietly remind myself, ‘Whatever, let it go, it’s not even real.’
Here’s to letting go of jealousy, cause it’s bullshit! Namaste to that.