This is a writing prompt from my writers group that has morphed into a post on my blog When we were first given this task – write a piece that begins with ‘If Only…’, I was totally uninspired. If only, what if, maybe, would have, could have, should have…boring! I thought to myself. My brain just doesn’t really work along those sentimental, regretful pathways. And then, suddenly, I caught myself in the middle of an If Only thought – and quickly captured it and wrote it down before I forgot. And while I was writing, I found that ‘If Only’ can be a creative beginning, one that I have used often. Here it is:
If only…I could do an unsupported headstand in the middle of the room, I thought to myself wistfully. I can kick up into headstand easily and do an unsupported headstand for five minutes – but I need a wall to kick up against. I want to go to the next step and get into a headstand without a wall to catch me, but so far, I haven’t had much luck.
Kneeling on my yoga mat, I place my forearms on the floor and interlock my fingers in the classic headstand preparation pose. Straightening my legs into dolphin pose, I pause for a moment, feeling the weight of my torso settling onto my arms, shoulders and thoracic area. Shifting my weight forward, I bring my knees as close to my face as possible and go up onto my tippy toes…and then attempt to get my feet off the ground. I overbalance and fall sideways with a thud. Damn! Defeated for the moment, I roll over to the wall and effortlessly kick up into a headstand. The wall – my friend and my enemy
Coming down and resting my forehead on the floor in pose of the child to normalise my blood pressure, I thought for a moment about some of my other ‘if onlys’.
If only…I could be a published writer
If only…I could have my own sacred space
If only…I could have a regular yoga home practice
If only…I could work from home
If only…I could do an unsupported headstand against a wall
I smiled to myself, still resting in child’s pose.
Published writer? Yep. I’ve had three articles published by The Elephant Journal (here, here and here), three articles published by The Yoga Lunchbox(here, here and here) – and I’ve written nearly 120 posts in this very blog! And that’s only the start, people
My own sacred space? Yep. I wrote a great piece on this a while ago called My Accidental Yoga Room. And that was only the beginning as well – this is what my sacred space looks like now:
A regular home yoga practice? I’ve written about this here, there and everywhere, and in fact I blogged every day through my first 40 days of yoga. That was about 18 months ago, and I’m still doing yoga every day.
Working from home? First I needed an office (thank you accidental yoga room). Then I needed internet in that office (thank you Glen for installing my router). Then I needed a job (thank you Elizabeth for sending me the link for my first online job) . I have worked for nearly a year doing social media, blogging and newsletters for a company specialising in helping wellness practitioners create successful businesses.
Headstand against the wall? I wrote about that here – but let me just say that I was just as defeated and doubting about my ability to do that as I am about doing a headstand in the middle of the room now.
Hot damn! That if only statement must be pretty powerful
It is…but only if it is accompanied by a couple of things:
- It’s our job to come up with the what: it’s the Universe’s job to come up with the how, when and where. Don’t for God’s sake try to step out of your job description. We need to keep our desires as general as possible because we don’t have all the information, we don’t have access to the big picture. Patience and faith, people.
- It is not enough to sit around and wish for things. Action is the next principle. Ever heard that saying God helps those who help themselves? What this actually means is to attract Universal attention, you need to take small steps towards your dream. Does the thing you want cost money? Start saving, look for another job! Do you want a job that you aren’t qualified or experienced enough for? Sort that out – study and volunteer. Do you want to be a writer? Start a blog, go to a writers group, do a writing course. You must take action, because action creates momentum on all sorts of levels – some that you see and some that you don’t.
Hang on a minute, I’ve just had an idea about the headstand. What about if I practice the technique for getting into a headstand in the middle of the room – against a wall? Hang on a minute and let me just see if that works.
I’m back. It does work For me, writing creates clarity and understanding, which then goes on to create action. If I am not clear about something, I become stuck.
So, if onlys are super powerful when accompanied by patience, faith and action, huh?
If only…I could get a new car (small to medium 4wd please). What do I need to do? Get more work, keep my eye out, have faith and be patient.
If only…I could get a great job that I can work from or close to home, that suits my interests, skills, experience and passions, earn enough money to get what I need and fit in with my family. What do I need to do? Apply for jobs that suit my criteria, make sure my experience and qualifications are up to date, be patient, keep the faith.
If only…we could have our house extension completely finished within the next 12 months. What do I need to do? Earn more money, save hard, be patient, keep the faith.
If only…this gorgeous book idea that is germinating in my heart and mind will become a reality! What do I need to do? Research, get my ideas together, write, be patient, keep the faith.
What are some of your ‘if onlys’ – and how do make your dreams come true?