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Zen Peacekeeper.







Are you ready to get clear? Let’s do it together.

Sunday, May 4, 2014 by Marianne Elliott

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Last night I had a heated conversation with some friends about my disappointment and frustration that people with the capacity to help bring about positive change in our country are not doing as much as they can.

I raised my voice.

I almost pounded the table in my effort to get across to people how urgent and important it is that we all do our bit.

‘If we don’t ALL start making courageous changes and taking bold action NOW,’ I said, ‘there may not be any water left for your children!’

It was an strong statement, intended to convey the urgency I feel every day. But it wasn’t an exaggeration.

More than a third of the world’s population already live with ‘water stress’ and MIT researchers predict that by 2050 more than half the world’s population will be at risk due to water stress if we keep doing things the way we do them now.

In other words: something has to change. And it has to change soon.

The challenges facing the world today are massive and urgent. But I do not believe they are insurmountable. Not if we all do our part.

But, it is hard to play your part. There’s no doubt about that.

As we talked last night, despite my raised voice and almost thumping fist, I listened carefully to the reasons people say they don’t act. And what I heard was that our reasons for not acting boil down to two things:

I’m confused aka I don’t know what to do.

 I’m scared aka I don’t know what will happen if I act.

There is no doubt it takes courage to do anything that matters in life. Which is why I teach courage.

But action also requires clarity.

Confusion and fear work together to paralyse us, to keep us inside our comfort zone and doing things the way we’ve always done them. Which is not only a problem for the 4.8 billion people who won’t have enough water in less than 40 years — it’s also a problem for anyone who wants to live a more authentic and liberated life.

So how can we get past ‘I don’t know what to do?’ We get there by cultivating clarity.

Clarity is the ability and willingness to see things are they really are and to break down complex situations into elements that are simple and small enough to understand and act on.

In my life, the greatest tools for cultivating that kind of clarity have been yoga and meditation. When I’m practicing regularly, I have greater capacity to recognise fear and confusion, more resilience in the face of them, and more ability to move past them with both courage and clarity.

On the mat we learn to see ourselves as we really are, we learn to break complex poses down into simple, achievable steps, and we learn to stay with our feelings of fear and confusion – knowing that if we keep breathing, and hold our ground, they can, in time, be transformed into courage and clarity.

As we cultivate clarity on the mat, we find we have more of it off the mat.

It’s not the entire solution to the world’s biggest problems. But it’s an excellent place to start. Which is why – year after year – I continue to teach courses on beginning your own home yoga practice.

Because yoga is about so much more than Lululemon pants, sculpted arms and flexible hamstrings.

It’s about clarity.

Yoga can help you cultivate the clarity you need to see through — and move beyond — confusion.The clarity you need to get clear about what it is you can and want to do.The clarity you need to step out of your comfort zone and do something important.The clarity you need to live the life you want to live and to be the kind of person you want to be.

Are you ready to get clear? Let’s do it together. The next round of 30 Days of Yoga starts on 19 May and registration is now open — I’d love to have you join me.

PS — Alumni, we’ve got a special Friends & Family discount for you to share with your loved ones! Be watching for an email with details from me in the next few days.


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3 Responses to "Are you ready to get clear? Let’s do it together."

  1. Jack Saunsea says:

    Indeed. The issue of all people being able to have access to clean water can seem daunting. We might look at those who use the most water for perhaps, completely unnecessary reasons and hope to advocate for a change in their structures. But it seems that profit is usually a stronger motivation than most anything else in that case.

    I think when we are mindful of our own actions and how we are using or abusing water, that becomes a part of our lifestyle. When it becomes the lifestyle of more and more of us, perhaps it would spill into those who abuse water both in small and large scales.

    Water, that most essential element of life. Let’s respect it as we respect ourselves.

  2. […] Are You Ready To Get Clear?  Here are two ways and why it is so important. […]

  3. Agree wholeheartedly with this post. Yoga and meditation are THE path to clarity. And acting is THE path to improving our world. We each have a talent, our own personal way to convey what we believe in. Let’s use it.

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