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Before we dive into what it means to be aligned and how to return to this state when we’re feeling “off,” we have to debunk one key myth: that you’re either always “in” or “out” of alignment.
Like most black and white concepts, this one is limiting, reductive, and designed to keep us stuck in some kind of suffering. So, let’s consider a more empowering narrative.
We can’t be in or out of alignment with our highest Self because alignment is, at its very core, a fluid concept. Much like living a life with integrity that we can flow to and from, alignment is a dance.
How to go with the Flow
When we dance—or if we break it down—step away from the people, places, and things that keep us honest and true to ourselves, the door toward realignment and peace doesn’t close on us permanently. It always stays open a crack, so we can walk back in whenever we’ve learned our lessons and we’re ready to move forward with new information.
We know this inherently, yet we must remember that our words create our worlds. I think it’s wise to be mindful of how we frame our relationship with alignment and how we work with it. Think swimming downstream, rather than upstream. Less struggle and fear, and more trust and flow.
Like so many of us, I’ve felt heavy—literally (boredom snackers raise your hands) and metaphorically (sometimes the weight of the world feels crushing, right?) over the course of this long and drawn-out pandemic. As a result, I’ve had to amp up my self-care practices to stay sane, kind, and present. To say I’ve had to realign more often in 2020 than in years past would be the understatement of the year.
I’ve had to meditate more, journal more, cry more, practice yoga more, and connect with nature more than ever. These—and many other things—are what keep me aligned with my highest Self.
Defining your “Highest Self”
What is this elusive version of the Self so many of us talk about? For me, it’s when my thoughts, feelings, words, and actions live in harmony with one another. It’s when I’m my kindest, truest, and most loving self.
Whenever I binge Netflix shows, spend too much time on Instagram, or focus on harmful thoughts about myself or others, I feel gross, frustrated, and sad. I’ve danced away from alignment. So, I take a few, often clumsy, steps back toward my centre, and I realign.
I know I’m dancing in alignment when ideas, love, and peace come to me easily and abundantly. When I put aside forcing, struggling, and trying to control every moment, and instead surrender to the process, I dance in alignment with my highest Self.
Alignment is fertile soil for the growth of ease, flow, and gratitude, and these very things also bring us into an aligned state. It’s a positive feedback loop.
Yes, sometimes it takes longer and more effort to make that journey home, but it’s always available to us. There’s no hard line written in stone that prevents us from reconnecting with ourselves when we make a detour—however long or far off it may be.
I know this on a deep level, and I feel this now, in my body. When my shoulders have risen up by my ears, my jaw is clenched and my chest feels tight, I know I’ve danced away from alignment. When my breathing is deep and slow, my belly is soft, and the space between my eyebrows is relaxed, I know I’m dancing with alignment.
I know chaos, and I know stillness. I’m learning how to redirect instead of judging myself when I’ve fallen away from my path.
With this knowledge and wisdom, I’m able to show myself and others more patience and compassion along the way to freedom. Damn, that takes the pressure off a bit, doesn’t it?
Need a bit more? Practice these affirmations when you’re feeling “off” to help you dance with alignment again.
And keep dancing, my friends.
Read this article’s twin post here: 10 Affirmations for When You’re Feeling “Off.”
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