Exercise has always been a way to balance my busy life – whether when I was a student in school, in a public accounting firm or running my businesses over the years. I love all forms of exercise, but I am most passionate about yoga as a way to release stress and be ready to take on each day. Pacing myself in my yoga practice, is much like pacing yourself in your job or business that you run.
For a long time I kept my professional life and yoga life separate. But, what I have found over the years are that the philosophies have more similarities than differences. Many of us know what the “law of diminishing returns” is, but we forget about this once we start a business. For many of us that are entrepreneurs, this occurs often without us even realizing it….if we work one more hour, take one more client call, finish one more project – we believe we are helping our business. This is when we hit diminishing returns. We aren’t as fresh, we aren’t as visionary, and many times can create stress to those around us because of it.
It took me many years to realize that I have to take time out for myself and not compromise personal time in order for my business to be as successful as possible. When I started my business, my minimum day was on average 12-14 hours long. If I allowed it, I could have probably had a day that never ended… but, did that really help? Could it not have waited for the next day so I could be fresher?
Don’t get me wrong, I still work a lot of hours and have a good deal of travel, but I balance it. I do that by blocking out time in my calendar each day that I do not compromise for anything else. It may be really early in the morning, late at night or maybe just 30 minutes, but I commit to it. I actually get some of my best ideas when I step back from what I am doing and completely change gears – for some reason, problems get solved in my head without me planning it or I come up with ideas that I wouldn’t had thought of if I had not taken that time away from work.
We strive in the business world for goals that are not much different than in yoga. We want to find our balance, our equilibrium. Whether that balance be between our work and family life, being in the black versus the red financially, or having a plan that will keep us steady and take our businesses to the next level. In Yoga, we call that our Drishti. The practice of Drishti in yoga is a gazing technique that develops concentration and teaches you to see the world as it really is. It is a point of focus where the gaze rests during a posture. You gaze outward while bringing awareness inward to keep a sense of calmness.
This is what a yoga practice teaches us each time we come to the mat. We are alone with ourselves, our thoughts, our breath and our bodies. The practice of yoga is not really about the challenge of flexibility, it’s the challenge of our mind. We have no choice but to be present. If we aren’t present in what we are doing on the mat, we fall out of a pose. This lesson that yoga teaches us is the work we need to do in order to take that off the mat and into the world. When I finish a yoga practice, I feel refreshed and open. My mind is clearer and I can move a little more slowly through what comes up next in my day.
Finding yoga in my life has provided me time to clear my mind so that I can step back from the business and ensure I am focusing on the right things. There are days when this can be hard to do – really committing to it and taking the time dedicated to do it each day can be challenging. There are days where you block the time and don’t feel like doing it. Do it anyway. Just like you wouldn’t pass up a sales call for your business, you can not cancel the important things that feed you. There are many days I don’t feel like practicing, but I do it anyway, and always happy that I did.
So what does DRISHTIQ mean? I apply it to both my professional and personal life. It really doesn’t mean anything, I made it up….so you can create the definition that suits you! For me, I have defined it as breaking down boundaries to create endless possibilities. DRISHTIQ is constantly striving for more and not setting limits that are perceived or actual. As an entrepreneur in your own business or in a corporation spearheading new initiatives, DRISHTIQ allows you to reimagine a new way for success. Gazing beyond your current situation to create a vision. Creating a team around you that works toward collaboration and innovation.
Finding the right balance and support around you will help take you find your DRISHTIQ. Taking the first step and blocking time on your calendar to get started with yoga will go a long way – from there, it takes on a life of its own. It will benefit you, not only with your business, but with those around you.