Last week, I had a cold for the first time in three years. As everyone knows, colds are a nuisance; you feel tired enough to know something is off, but not unwell enough to cease all activities and stay in bed watching Netflix. So I did all of my normal things, including my own workouts, and I noticed something sort of amazing. I consistently had amazing quality sessions. I am always working on some sort of movement skill, so it is fairly easy to track how things are going. All skills last week were remarkably fluid, despite my runny nose.
Dan Harris says in the beginning of his book “10% Happier*,” “The voice inside my head is an asshole.” While this is a bit harsh, my voice definitely spends a lot of time critiquing during my movement practice. There is a constant dialog regarding what I should be doing, what I should be experiencing, what I could be doing better. This, despite the fact that I know sometimes it’s better to just do without thinking (one of the many reasons one should not be her own coach). While I was sick, I didn’t have the energy to have that running dialog in my head; all energy was being expended on moving. They say like attracts like, and I find myself frequently saying to some of my more perfectionistic clients, “relax and just do. Don’t think so hard about the movement.” Often, with many things, we are our own worst enemy. If we let go of the constant self criticism and simply did, many of the skills we seek to acquire would be much easier.
*If you are looking for a humorous introduction to meditation, “10% Happier” is a fun read.