Creating space

While listening to a podcast from my yoga teacher, Elsie Escobar, she described how sometimes, when our bodies have difficulty moving into the various yoga poses, the key is not more strain, it's making more space. As someone who cannot move effortlessly into all of the yoga poses this resonated with me. Making more space. Not straining. Not physically pushing myself, not forcing my muscles to do my will but instead, doing the opposite- making more space for my body to move. Making more space for the pose to be embraced. Making more space for the truth of yoga.

Making more space could be a mantra for me right now. It seems, right now, I'm cramming all I can into just the space I have. I'm trying to exercise more and work more and spend more time with my children and spend more time with my friends. I'm trying to create more in my life, more for the holidays, more for the end of the year. I'm doing all I can to do as much as I can right now, this minute and in the end, maybe I would be served better by making more space.

If I were able to open up, to let go just a little, to look around and see what's here rather than trying to see what's next, maybe I would be able to go just a little easier on myself. Maybe, instead of trying to fit as much as I can into each minute of each day, if I just took an extra breath, exhaled more deeply, opened my eyes a little more widely, maybe if I took that time and made that space I wouldn't feel so overwhelmed. Because trying to do all and be all for everyone leaves little time for growth, and that is stifling.

It's the stifling that makes me crazy. It's the feeling of suffocation, of having too much to do, of not being able to fully breathe that makes me feel rushed and harried and scattered. Because in doing too much for too many we lose sight of what we really want, what we really have, what we really need for ourselves. And to nurture ourselves is to nurture others. Because when we are more fully present and when we are more fully available we provide both to ourselves and to others what it is we all really want- to be the best we can for today.

It may not be perfect but taking one extra breath, letting our shoulders drop just an inch, un-furrowing our brow and letting our eyes go a little soft and our thoughts go a little quiet brings us peace. And in that peace we have more space, and more of an ability to grow, and more of an ability to be, and more of an ability to do all that we can and all that we need to, for ourselves and our families. And in giving ourselves that extra space we open up to all the possibilities that are waiting for us. And making more space gets us to where we want to be, sooner than we thought, and more pleasant and honest when it is we get there.

This is the life.


  1. The synopsis of your post in one sentence: "trying to see what's here instead of what's next." I am going to quote you, if you don't mind.

  2. Again, very well written. What's amazing is that by letting go and making more space, sometimes we can actually accomplish more, or at least, more things of quality that really nourish, instead of other tasks on a checklist.

    Another usage of space that comes to mind for me is in kids soccer. Often, they will frantically expend their energy trying to single-handedly ge last defenders, when they would be much more successful if they would stop,' read the defense, make some sort of move to create space - i.e. passing angles - in the defense, and then simply pass to the open man. As John Wooden said, players need to be quick but not hurried.


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