Surrender to Enthusiasm

????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????We did a new activity in yoga class last week (at least it’s something I haven’t done in class before), and – as my teacher suggested while presenting this particular offering – it’s quite possible that it was not an accident. Towards the end of an invigorating hour of practice that started with dancing to warm up, the teacher came around and asked us to pick a card from a deck. Each card contained a word. When she came to me, I noticed a card sticking out of the pile, but something told me that one was too obvious a choice and I should pick another that was tucked a bit more snuggly into the pack. The card said “surrender.”

My first reaction was, “No. I really don’t want to.” And at the same time, I realized I might not have a choice. I was thinking in terms of giving up – in particular giving up something that I could no longer control that was not serving me well. Hmmm, I thought. I was still not so convinced that there was no hope. And if you read my blog regularly, you’ll see that this isn’t the first time the idea of letting go had come up in this class.

After offering the deck of cards to the last student, the teacher came back to me with another card. “I have to give you this one because it pretty much jumped out at you!” she exclaimed.

I don’t know if the card was the same one I’d noticed, but I took it and read “enthusiasm.”

That one bugged me a bit because it’s such a struggle for me sometimes to find the energy for enthusiasm, though I suppose that depends on how the word is defined. I was conscious that during the dance warm up at the beginning of class, for example, that there was a physical limitation holding me back. What can you do? I’m not twenty-one anymore.

But back to the cards. It was hard not to notice that these two words easily formed a short but powerful sentence: Surrender to enthusiasm.

Opportunities for Enthusiastic Surrender

I thought about this on the drive home. Why not consider that the message that had come through on the cards was real meant to reach me at this moment? I immediately felt energized. But what is it that I need to surrender to?

Maybe it’s to the enthusiasm of others that I need to attend to more. Perhaps the yoga gods are telling me, for example, to stop wishing my husband would stop talking about buying a motorcycle. Or maybe the message was sent to help me deal with a certain member of my extended family whose exaggerated, enthusiastic tales often test my patience.

Or, it could be that it’s time for me to surrender to my own enthusiasm for something, which I think shows itself in a much calmer way than the behavior usually associated with that word. In fact, maybe I need to be OK with that instead of letting it stop me. In particular I’m thinking about doing something to enhance my career – perhaps another writing course or an aromatherapy certification or yoga teacher training.

Just that morning, in fact, I’d been thinking about the teacher training – and what holds me back. Besides the money and time commitment (neither of which is as easy to work around at it would have been in the past), is the fear that having the job of teaching yoga will ruin my enthusiasm for the practice. This probably comes from my experience as a public school teacher, when my love of learning was seriously challenged by having to deal with reluctant students, politics, lesson plans, and all the other things that learning is really not about. I also haven’t found the right teacher or program – for me – to train with.

And in case you missed the message the first time…

When I got home from class, I returned to a book editing project I’d been working on for weeks. The book happens to be about yoga and other tools for living a healthy, blissful life. Within moments, this sentence jumped off a page I was editing: When you are willing to surrender into greater energy, nothing is lacking.

The context of the sentence was setting intentions for a life-changing practice that involves yoga, nutrition, breathing, meditation and other aspects of mind, body and spirit.

Hmmm, maybe that energy I’m worried about not having will be there when I need it after all.

Moments after that, my other word appeared, this time in a sentence about taking time each day to sit for five minutes and formally set an intention: Do it with enthusiasm. This is where you start manifesting your dream.

So now, of course, my surrender was about something very different than I initially feared. It was not about giving up, but about allowing something to come through – and allowing it to come through with intention and enthusiasm (acknowledging that it would probably be my own brand of quiet enthusiasm, and that’s really OK).

I’m still not exactly sure what that “something” is – there are a lot of possibilities. But I’m going to pay attention, because I know there is a something, a next step in my spiritual journey or perhaps my career – or perhaps, both.

They say that when the student is ready the teacher will appear. I did sign up for another writing course.

1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Trackback: Letting Go of What Doesn’t Serve You (And Embracing What Does) | Third Eye

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Maria Kuzmiak, M.A. is a health and well-being writer with a background in nutrition, psychology and education and a passion for yoga. She has written hundreds of articles, blogs and newsletters for clients in health-related fields, particularly those specializing in yoga, natural medicine, nutrition, and spiritual health and healing. Maria has also worked as a nutritionist, teacher and technical editor. Learn more about her writing at

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