Oh snap... yeah... I said it. It's plastered at the top of my website so it's the first thing you see. I've gotten a lot of interesting feedback about this, both good and bad and I've concluded after having it up there for a few years now that it is doing exactly as I hoped... helping me find my tribe.
It's a little vulgar and shocking for some and YES! I have kids classes here and NO, I don't cuss and swear during these sessions and classes lol. BUT. My adults (or big kids as I call them) are never judged for letting things fly. It is MEANT to shock you and make you think.
This place is %500 a no judgement zone. I want all the weird. Sticking this at the top of my website guarantees' this! Here's how.
Suppose this really offends you. Suppose you don't want to come here because I have that naughty word at the top of my website. You never bothered to ask me about it. You never bothered to talk to the person saying it and find out why it's there. You never considered that you might be able to learn from it yourself. YOU are a judgey person. It is not the word, but the person saying it that should concern you. You are the exact type of person who REALLY NEEDS TO COME HERE. Either way it brings me the people who need the help the most OR those who already get it. And it keeps the haters away. Either way, I'm happy :)
And then... there's Nancy. Oooooooooh Nancy.... One day about a few months ago this lovely beautiful soul comes flowing through the door ready for her first day of gentle yoga in a new setting. Her short hair flipped out and styled, funky framed glasses, and overjoyed with thoughts of her grand children and having new people to share stories with. The very first thing Nancy said to me after her first class was "I saw the words 'Learning the art of not giving a f*ck' at the top of your webpage and I just KNEW I was coming to the right place!" Not at all what I was expecting to hear THAT but let me just tell you how ecstatic I was to have heard it... it's working...!
Since I opened my studio almost 3 years ago, I have refused to take this down from my site. And it has served me perfectly well. I am building a strong tribe of non-judging yogis and artists who all come in when they need help caring less about the things they can't control and finding themselves and their confidence in the process. Finding people who will listen and help us appreciate the things we forgot about ourselves. Who need to find people who understand struggle, progress, and how we often times get caught up in ourselves and feel stuck. Sometimes the hardest thing to do in life is not give a fuck when things happen that we can't control. And it's so much easier not to give a fuck when we have a a whole tribe helping us. A whole tribe of people going through their own journey's. A whole tribe of people looking to heal by starting with themselves. Because that's hella hard to do.
Not giving a fuck doesn't mean not caring, not feeling, not considering our circumstances and making decisions accordingly. This does not mean don't be compassionate. This does not mean don't forgive when forgiving is deserved. It simply means that when life gets us down, when things happen that we can't do anything about, we don't waste our time and energy being worried and upset about them. Dwelling on uncontrollable circumstances will keep us stuck forever. This is anxiety in a nutshell and it can be crippling. Feel what we need to feel, move forward, make active decisions for ourselves, don't let the words and feelings of the outside world control how we move in the future. Do something about it and learn not to give a fuck so we can give more fucks about ourselves. Fill that empty cup that we forget about as we continuously pour it out for others.
I had a long conversation yesterday with my cousin and she said something to me in a way that I just really needed to share. She said that "Life is how we react to it." I sat there on my yoga mat while I was listening to her tell me her story and I thought to myself, what a beautiful way to put it. So simple. And it's exactly what I have been preaching to myself and my friends for several years with so many more words and drawn out explanations. One more time, LIFE IS HOW WE REACT TO IT.
If we think about it in terms of the Laws of Attraction, we would look at the concept of making sure we are putting out what we want to receive. If we explode with our emotions and react to situations in such a way, we will get those same feelings and vibrations in return from those around us. We are also catalysts to our own sorrow. If we explode, the problem will grow and escalate and start to affect the people around us. They will start to grow weary of us and want to spend less time around us. Eventually, if we keep pumping those emotions into our environment, it is going to affect the others that are in it. It's a domino affect with energy that touches every person we experience thru ought the day. I am pretty sure somewhere in my blog or vlog I have talked about the "getting coffee at Rutters" scenario where I explain how different types of energy have a domino affect on everything we come in contact with for the rest of the day.
In this way we must understand how easily and subconsciously others affect us. That although the thought of being able to control how others influence us seems quite lovely, the laws of energy clearly show that this is impossible. This is when we are taught early in life to be too forgiving and end up with habits later in our lives that lead to unhealthy trauma bonds, unreciprocated friendships, and toxic relationships with people who trigger us. We focus so much on being good that we never learn how to stop the bad. We become used up machines with built up emotions who constantly turn the wheel of depression by allowing the exchange of energy with the things that fuel it. We soak up everything around us and are constantly in the process of subconsciously exchanging it. This is not in our control. No one is this super human. If we find ourselves saying this, we may want to reconsider this thought process. Do we also have trouble saying the word "no"? If we were really in control, would this be an issue? Are we continuously giving our fucks and attention to things that have continuously shown us it doesn't work?
The fastest and most effective way to start this process is by removing the things we do have control over that are effecting our environment. Start with the uncontrollable people. These are people who have a lot of energy and power but who have no control over their emotions and where they throw it. We may not have control over these types of people and their decisions, but we do have control over whether or not we allow them to be apart of our environment and influence the energy within it. We control whether or not we pick up the phone. We control whether or not we communicate and exchange energy with these people. We must actively choose to remove this energy if we want to actively have less of it. Anytime we allow an exchange of energy with another person, we are exchanging karma. We are allowing their karma to interact with our own. We must understand that although we are giving them peace, they may be giving us distress. And we must recognize when it is not good for us. Don't give responses to the negative shit that gets thrown at us in the process of removing them. Don't give them the satisfaction of continuously exchanging that energy and draining ourselves with it. Don't let emotional guilt trips pull us back under into opportunities for turmoil. We often think ourselves to be exceptions with these types of forces and people and forget that everyone else probably thought so too, including ourselves probably several times over. We forget the simplicity of how energy works and how we exchange it. How little control we really have when we allow it into our lives. Because it is not ours.
Say good bye, put the phone down, and learn how to not give a fuck. Energy and attention are one in the same. An exchange of power. If you need help come see me, shut up, and listen. We talk ourselves out of these decisions because we have big hearts and we care more for others than we do ourselves. In the process we become our own worst enablers. We see-saw back and forth with these types of people by saying we need to remove them when they aren't there but not being able to control ourselves when we pick up the phone, answer that message and open the door back up for that exchange. We must control our own ability to leave it. Control ourselves and our responses. And stop giving a fuck about things we can't. Stop allowing it the opportunity.
What ever we allow around us and in our environment, we are also exposing to those in and around it. It's very important to take care when choosing who we allow to be in our own presence and the presence of others we care about. We have children who watch and learn from our every move. Are we showing them how to be forgiving and loving or are we showing them how to create and maintain relationships with toxic people? Especially when we feel like we desperately need change and progress. We want our children to know how to grow. What example are we setting? What behaviors are we allowing and showing our children are acceptable by allowing and accepting them in others? It is hardest to understand who deserves our fucks. Show them how to recognize what's good and bad. Start by watching the energy they put out to others. How do they maintain their own relationships with others and how do they encourage us to maintain ours? This is how we recognize those types of people that need to be removed. Communicate with these people and explain how they are being toxic so they can at least think about it and remove them. Show them how to do the same by doing so ourselves. We want to show our children how to keep control of their lives so they can make it a habit now. We don't want them to create habits that enable others to run their lives for them. Learn to say no and give less fucks. Show them to set those boundaries. Give fucks about those who give fucks about how they affect us and the relationships of those we care about. Give fucks about those that encourage us to solve our problems in healthy ways. Watch their words. Watch the energy they toss around to others. And don't let a few good actions in the past guilt trip or off-kilter our understanding of how those people are affecting us. Watch what they do in the present. This is who they are. This is how they have chosen to grow. This is how they affect us. This is out of our control. This is when we need to start taking it. We cannot force someone to understand something. You've probably heard me say a billion times that people only learn from experience. We can tell them the same things a million times but they must experience it themselves. And by sticking around and enabling it, we are keeping them from this experience. This is how we are being selfish by trying not to be selfish. Especially if we are already actively recognize their unhealthy patterns. Especially if we are hurting others around us in the process by allowing them. Especially if we are hurting those that want to grow with us. We are not helping anyone by sticking around for those that don't. We are giving our fucks, we are exchanging energy, with people who don't give real fucks about us. We are enabling ourselves from growing and making time and energy for better things. And when they have been around for a long time, they are probably the most important and most difficult to remove. And they are everywhere.
By exploding in our reactions and putting those vibrations out into the world we are proving ourselves really quite weak by not being emotionally strong enough to stay in control and set boundaries. By allowing ourselves opportunities to be triggered. We use excuses like we allow this behavior because sometimes we enjoy it, knowing damn well that not everything that feels good is good for us. We think we are showing others how to be forgiving by doing so because we are taught to do so. We think we are helping others by setting an example and continuously forgiving them. We hang onto things because it makes us feel like good people by doing that for others. The reality of this is that if we are doing it to make ourselves feel good, we really aren't doing it for anybody else at all. There is really quite a selfish element to this thought process and if we are doing it for ourselves while still allowing ourselves to be frustrated by these things, we might as well choose not deal with these things at all and allow them the opportunity. Are we doing it because it's what is best for the other person or are we actually enabling them to continuing being such a way? Are they learning from us or are we encouraging recognizable patterns of behavior and stunting their own growth by doing so? Are we enabling the very stress we so heavily need to remove from our lives? Remove it and learn not to give a fuck.
Imagine what would happen if we stopped reacting. Stopped responding. Stopped allowing these things into and around our lives. Stopped allowing those opportunities and took control over our influences. Imagine JUST ourselves. We need to do this for ourselves. This is not selfish. This is necessary in order to gain control back over our lives. Don't forget. Don't cave in.
THEN. Start doing this with everything else in our lives. If there are things in our lives that we can do to improve our situation and we are just choosing not to (and folks, these are usually stupid little things that will take us an hour to do and we just can't... make... ourselves... do it... some stupid paperwork, a difficult phone call, an outstanding bill) take the time to get it done and everything else that is out of our control... stop giving a fuck about. We are wasting our energy. How often do we complain about not having any energy while also choosing to give it away to those that take it from us?
My brother Ben and I have always had a strong bond and I genuinely believe it is because we have this ability. No one else around us really quite understood it growing up. We often times were considered irresponsible or emotionally fucked up because we didn't always react to things the way the rest of our family did. We weren't always taught how to do the things we should give a fuck about because material things were always handed to us. So when it came time to handle them ourselves we fucked ourselves up quite a bit in our adolescence and had a lot of growing to do. Nothing I couldn't learn from reading a book and teaching myself later on down the road (thanks for helping me develop that habit, mom).
But what we did learn and develop from this was also a gift. When something happens that's out of our control, we don't respond to it with distress. We usually respond with humor and later on worked to remove the most unhealthy coping mechanisms in exchange for new ones like cannabis and yoga. And yes I said learn. We never claimed to be perfect but we cannot and refuse to deny our own growth, we never denied the positive aspects of who we are. We used to talk all the time about how nobody else gets it in a family that dwells on perfectly controllable situations with uncontrollable emotions and a heavy focus on negativity and the things they dislike in others. On both sides. We eventually learned that we just don't have time and there is just no point on wasting energy on those types of emotions. They don't move us forward. They don't change it in any way. They don't help us grow by hanging onto them and doing nothing about it. So we might as well laugh and let it go. Figure it out later if and when we can. Don't get upset about other people's actions, just forgive them, take some kind of action to remove them, and let it go. Much different from forgive them, don't hold them accountable for the energy they are throwing by doing nothing about it, showing them we allow it and will continue to do so, and let it go. We sometimes look cold and emotionless when in reality we are very much so in control and find it easy to compartmentalize our stress for our own mental health. After living with ourselves our whole lives eventually we stopped and reflected somewhere and we were fortunate enough to have each other during this time and process of each other's journey's into adulthood while we had the opportunity. We saw the growth and positive things in each other when often times it went unrecognized in other places when we needed it the most. If we needed change bad enough, we figured it out and developed new practices with our thought patterns. We developed good habits with our physical disciplines and in turn gave our mental and emotional sides a more healthy place to thrive. Handling negative energies as they came and went in our lives became easier for us. It is also heavily misunderstood by those who haven't grasped it yet and still dwell their energy in places that don't move them anywhere. We have developed the ability to not give a fuck through our own life experiences and taking the time to learn about ourselves, what we allow, and teaching ourselves to stop allowing it.
We both always enjoyed taking care of ourselves physically. In order to maintain balance in our lives we need to have harmony in our physical, mental, and emotional health. Start with physical health. Our mental and emotional health can't thrive in an unhealthy environment. Start to exercise and move while actively removing the shit the comes into contact with it. It's a vicious circle that can go in either direction depending on how we choose to maintain the balance of do's and don'ts in our lives.
It is INDEED an art form. It requires self-discipline, it requires us to tune everything else out and listen to ourselves, and it requires us to start taking action for our own growth. Do the things we should and don't do the things we shouldn't. Create better habits and allow less of the bad ones. And this is where yoga comes into play to help teach us by physically showing us these experiences. Because we TOO only learn in such a way... y'all know it was gunna be in there somewhere...
Take a deep breath... and learn not to give a fuck. If this offends you, you are giving too many already. Come see me if you need help.