The 5 big ways I have positively changed my life this year:
1) Following Patanjali’s advice on achieving mental clarity:
I have been consciously reminding myself to do these four things, as much as possible:
- Friendliness towards the joyful
- Compassion for those who are suffering
- Celebrating the good in others
- Remaining impartial to the faults and imperfections of others
(#4 is definitely the hardest but, as with most difficult things, the most rewarding if mastered!)
2) Eating vegan for a year:
This has been absolutely life changing and I will never turn back. Many yogi’s follow the vegan lifestyle as a way of complying with the yogic practice of “ahisma”, meaning “non-violence”. The benefits are too many to include here, if you’re curious to know more, go ahead and read this! A great source of inspiration and motivation for me has been this website.
3) Simplified my life:
- My basic, low pressure job provides me with regular hours and although my pay check is somewhat miniature, I am able to save up tons of money because of: a) the vegan diet is impressively cheap, b) my cheap rent (because I opted for an ultra basic flatshare) c) refusing to pay more for something than I think it’s worth (i.e club entry, expensive dinners, designer items…) and d) cycling everywhere I can!
- Saying no to makeup/unnecessary toiletries/trinkets: not only have I saved a TON of money doing this, I have also saved a bunch of time spent applying, removing and shopping for said trinkets… leaving me more time to enjoy the best things in life! (which, in case you aren’t getting it yet, are free… ;)) I have also found my skin and hair are really glowing as a result of minimising all the crap I used to load onto them!
- Going minimal on social media: another life-changer. My friendships are richer and my connection to people far more fulfilling.
4) Worked hard at self-acceptance:
I have been reading “The Language of Letting Go” by Melody Beattie. Whether or not you are codependent this has some great advice on letting go in general. Every so often I tell myself “I am allowed to be less than perfect. I may have my bad days, but overall, I am exactly where I need to be.” Allowing myself this space to just be my natural self has been transformational.
5) Maintained a regular practice:
This wasn’t easy, but once I realised that even a quick 5 minute breathing exercise counts as practice, I could flourish. On average I have attended 2 yoga classes a week all year, and wherever possible I have taken the time to self-practice. My favourite yoga classes to follow at home are Ekhart Yoga, and Yoga with Marlon.