On being humbled.

“We are going to the moon – that is not very far. Man has so much farther to go within himself”
~Anaïs Nin

In my last post, written just a wee couple of days before my first day of grad school, I wrote “I love that I am a constant work in progress.”  If only I had known seven weeks ago just how much of a work in progress I was to about to actually become.

I realize that to an outsider, yes, my life right now may look a little bit like a mess.

I relapsed HARD from my eight month sabbatical from coffee. After only two weeks into grad school, not only was I drinking half a french press every morning but even worse, I was taking the french press back into bed with me.

In addition, I’ve been using the classic “bad haircut” excuse to justify wearing my (usually un-showered) hair in a top knot every day.  I’m so off the grid, I didn’t know the World Series was going on until I received a New York Times alert on my phone to inform me of the winner.  I regressed from going to yoga everyday to struggling to make it once or twice a week, only to be in the most impressive class of yogi moms reconfiguring their limbs into poses I didn’t know even existed.  And then we move on to school, where my meager three years of work experience seems almost laughable when stacked up against some of my (extremely impressive) classmates.

But then I stop. And breathe. And okay maybe have a sip of coffee. And SEE the flip side. I am the luckiest girl in the world. There is nothing that so clearly shows just how much you are learning than the skillful art of being humbled day in and day out by the people you admire most.

But beyond being humbled, I am being shown my potential, what I have to look forward to.

No I can’t make the same leaps in problem solving that some of my classmates can at the moment, but their accomplishments only set the motivational carrot in place to keep me moving forward. I accept that it may take me longer to write a paper because this is the process that needs to take place to instill growth.  No I’m not on the third series of my Mysore yoga practice, but it doesn’t mean I won’t get there someday.  I look back to seven weeks ago in terms of my writing abilities and six months ago in terms of my yoga practice and it’s impossible not to see progress

I measure progress differently now. It’s a centimeter gained in a forward fold during yoga or in positive feedback from my project teams during class. It comes from learning a new technology or making a suggestion that’s liked by others. But really, the true mark of progress will come when I stop measuring it all together and instead learn, really learn, to just enjoy the ride.