Half-Year Reflection 2017

I wanted to take some time this week to simply reflect on the first half of 2017 and share with you what I've learned...

Self-compassion is a necessary skill

I think after I finish out my 20s, I'd like to write a self-help book for young women. I have a theory -- and I'm using myself as an experiment here, that self-compassion is the key to getting through these years.

Self-compassion is being kind to yourself. Self-compassion is not letting the inner critic roam. Self-compassion is saying, I messed up and yet I am still worthy. Self-compassion is what I wish I learned about in my teens. But it's better late than never.

2017 has forced me to be self-compassionate in order to survive the ups and downs of this year. I live in a time that is both extremely exciting, and frankly scary. So learning how to be nice to myself when things don't go as I planned, has helped me stay grounded. I do it by practicing lovingkindness meditation, and by simply approaching life with the knowledge that I am inherently worthy.

Connection is as easy is improv

I'm a former theatre kid. Maybe because of this, I have found a relationship between real life interactions and the art of improvisation. After all, everyone's just winging it, no?

The rules of improv are simple. It's to abide by "yes, and..." Meaning, you say "yes" to whatever situation you're in, then you add onto that scene.

"Yes... this is the moment I'm in, and I am going to do this..."

Besides meditation, I'd say improv taught me how to stay in the moment. I've realized that connecting with people is as easy as saying yes to the situation we're in, and then being courageous. In every day life, I add myself to the "scene" by expressing my truth. (If this sounds dramatic, sorry not sorry! I'm a Leo like that!)

I think that's the heart of connection -- embracing the moment and being truthful (satya).

People are people

In January, I got a gig to teach middle school students five days a week. It was a little daunting, but I figured it out: They were people! More recently, I've been hired at two yoga studios in the local area. I was truly nervous about delivering to yoga studio goers, but I figured it out again: They were people!

People are people means simply that at the core, everyone wants the same things. Everyone wants to be heard and validated. Everyone wants to feel love and happiness. I've learned to stop stressing about whether people like me or my class, I've learned to let them come and do them.

It doesn't matter if you're 12 or 62, in my yoga class you will practice moving with invitational language. You will practice listening to your intuition. You will practice lovingkindness meditation and self-compassion. You will practice being as you are. And, you will be guided by someone who is also practicing the same things.

It's been such a big year for me, and I hope to learn more wonderful lessons. This weekend I'm going to Portland to do a training with LoveYourBrain. I can't wait!

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What are some cool lessons you've learned in 2017? Comment below.

Hien Hong