As many of you know, I celebrated my son’s wedding this past weekend. It was a long-awaited event having been initially scheduled for July 2020, then March 2021, and, finally, December 11, 2021. After all the COVID related delays, it was an epic celebration! They had been engaged for such a long time that a sign upon entering said, “We have waited 1226 days for this … party accordingly.” Oh, what a party and celebration it was! Families being melded, friends joining in laughter and toasts, dancing, drinking, eating, all of the ingredients for a great celebration. It was the best. It got me thinking about celebrations and why it seems we have to wait for events like this to celebrate life.
One of the principles of yoga philosophy is to be present to the wonders of life. So often we take things for granted and don’t relish or celebrate the small things. We wait for the big events to party and rejoice, yet there are so many things to delight in, each and every day. That’s not to take away from the big celebrations (like the wedding of your only baby boy). Celebrations bring up wonderful feelings of joy, excitement, happiness. But, how about having these wonderful feelings of joy, excitement and happiness more regularly, even every day??? These emotions are all about gratitude. The power of celebration is this – you are grateful and happy! Celebration and gratitude are really one and the same. Just think about it. When you celebrate a wedding, you are saying you are grateful for the love two people have found, for the family and friends that have come to be together in honor of that love, and for the opportunity to be present at such an auspicious gathering.
Celebration is active, specific and plentiful. Gratitude is the basis for it and just another word for celebration. Celebration is gratitude. Gratitude is celebration and it is abundant. Look around you now. There is something to celebrate; many things in fact. Pick one and start an active moment of celebration. There’s the day. Celebrate the fact YOU ARE ALIVE! Take a little time every morning to simply be grateful for the day that is coming your way. When you begin your day with a sense of gratitude and celebration, you are bound to have more joy for the rest of the day. Then, there’s the sun. Watch it rise to give you another new day and celebrate its light, heat and warmth. As the day ends, watch it set in colors of the rainbow so beautiful it can take your breath away. Its brilliance is a celebration. As it sets and another day concludes, be grateful for all it offered you. This will add more richness to your day and bring in more reasons to celebrate. There’s yourself. Celebrate yourself and your achievements, big or minuscule. You’ve accomplished something. When you notice the little things in life you did well, it improves your mood making you happier and healthier. If you find you are taking yourself for granted (and we all do this), start taking notice of all the awesome things you do each day. Celebrate others. Take the opportunity to celebrate the good things others do for you. When you do this, it helps you appreciate them more and it helps them feel great too. You both feel happy.
Gratitude (or celebration) is a way of living, not an action only reserved for special occasions. Imagine taking this approach to life every day. Celebrate being alive, remind yourself of everything you have, celebrate yourself, and tune into to all you have to be grateful for around you. My son’s wedding was a grand epic celebration and we, indeed, partied accordingly. With the right mindset, we can do that each and every day!!! The energy of celebration is incredible. Join me in living the joyous power of celebrating as you celebrate yourself by taking care of your body, mind and spirit on your mat in any of our in-studio and online classes this week.
As always, thank you for reading my musings. Namaste, Leslie