*****This is the next in a series of posts about the 8 Limbs of Yoga and how they can apply to your life. The 8 Limbs of Yoga as described by Patanjali in his Yoga Sutras are a kind of roadmap to help your yoga practice extend out far past the physical benefits into a way of living that can bring peace and harmony to all of your relationships and in any circumstance.
The first of the 8 limbs of yoga are the Yamas. The Yamas are a series of guidelines, or ethical principles to follow. They apply to how we treat ourselves and how we treat others. Through the lens of yoga we will look at the more subtle examples of how we may not be following these guidelines for ourselves and others.*****
The second of the Yamas is Truthfulness, in Sanskrit - Satya.
Truthfulness - Satya
Don’t Lie. Tell the truth. Simple - but let’s explore a little deeper. Consider these lies:
Conforming or always deferring to others to keep the peace or to make sure people like you
Acting in a certain way to meet other people’s expectationsBeing nice instead of being honest.
Telling people what they want to hear
Telling yourself you’ll eat right or exercise and not following through
Making long to-do lists and setting big goals without ever taking the steps and implementing the processes to make them happen
Overcommitting to please others then being resentful that you aren’t living your own life
Holding on to a belief that no longer serves you, just because you always have
Telling the truth is about trust. When you lie to yourself, you learn that you are not someone who can be trusted.
I love to plan and make lists and set big goals. But here’s the truth. If I make a plan, or set a goal, but don’t actually follow through and take the steps to make it happen, I’m not telling the truth.
Every goal you set with no follow through or process in place to meet it, is a lie. Over time, you’ll stop believing that you’ll ever reach the goals you set. And every time you tell yourself you’ll do something and then don’t even start it, you’ll trust yourself less and less. In time, you stop believing that you can accomplish the things you want to accomplish.
Worrying about what people think, people pleasing, behaving in a way to make sure we fit in - all of these are lies.
Consider the things you do in your life, the obligations, the commitments, the duties that don’t create joy, the ones that don’t light you up, the ones that feel heavy and stressful.
Ask yourself why you have committed to those things? Was it to please someone else? To make yourself appear to be "someone who does those things?” Was it from a place of misplaced responsibility, because no-one else would do it?
If any of these are your reasons, you’re being dishonest. You are presenting yourself to the world in a way that is not true. When you act in a way that represents who you really are and commit to the things that truly light you up and you were made for, then you have a lightness about you and achieve so much more, without the stress and without the resentment.
When you are honest with yourself you can offer your true gifts to the world without resentment. When you lie to please others you give up yourself and eventually become resentful that your life is not your own.
We are doing a disservice to others when we choose to be nice instead of truthful.
It is our responsibility to tell the truth, and sometimes the truth is uncomfortable or hard to hear. Now, it’s important to recognize that the first Yama is nonviolence, to do no harm, so our truth must always come from a place of love. But Love requires that we speak the truth, even if it’s not what someone wants to hear.
Your truth is always changing as the season of your life changes.
What was true for you as a child isn’t true for you as an adult. You have to recognize that as you grow and change and evolve, there may be things in your life that aren’t true for you any more. Holding on to an outdated belief is holding on to a lie. We can still honor the old belief, after all it got us to where we are today, but then we can release it and let it go knowing that it is no longer our truth.
The truth takes Courage. It may make some people unhappy. It may mean that changes have to happen and difficult choices must be made. But standing in your own truth, speaking and living out your truth in Love is the only way to live your life as it was meant to be lived.
You are not responsible for other peoples feelings or reactions. You are not responsible for other peoples problems. Giving up your truth to live out someone else's won’t serve you or them.
Ask yourself: What is my truth? What changes do I need to make or what beliefs do I need to question in order to live my life in truth.
If any of this resonates with you, and you’d like to dive a little deeper into exploring where you might not be living your truth, I would love to work with you.
In my life, these principles and practices have changed how I see myself, who I spend my time with, and have helped me find my true calling and purpose. To live the life God created me to live. I want that sense of clarity and peace for you.
Let’s talk and see if Yoga and Wellness coaching is for you. And if it’s not, that's ok too. You get to make that choice. And I’ll support you making it! You can book a Free Consultation call with me Here. I can’t wait to hear from you.
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