Recently, I was invited to Cologne as a delegate of the fabulous Game Mixer programme. At the previous edition, which took place in November 2017 in Johannesburg, I already talked a little bit about Ashta and there seemed to be a lot of interest in the topic of Yoga and meditation. Specifically, what exactly I do every morning at an ungodly hour.
So this year, I prepared a little presentation on my own meditation practice, which started ten years ago. In many ways, I am still at the beginning of what looks like a life-long journey but I have learned a few things along the way, which I love to share.
Many people experience stress for one reason or another. For example, I used to feel that nothing I did was ever enough. My accomplishments were quickly followed by a feeling that I still hadn’t arrived and that in spite of my successes, there was something lacking.
Of course, this begs a few questions like “what is a success” and “what is it I want” neither of which I was able to answer. Instead, I would simply pursue new goals. But achieving them always left an empty space, which was invariably filled with the next project.
I know this type of behaviour is not uncommon especially among people in the entertainment industry. For many years, it left me stranded in a hamster wheel, chasing a promise of fulfilment that never arrived but often led me into exhaustion and disillusionment.
Yoga, meditation and other little routines and exercises I practice throughout the day have helped me overcome these feelings. They might not work for everyone as they have for me but it may be helpful for some to share my process so they can build on it or find out what works best for them. Here is roughly what my typical day looks like right now:
- 3.15 – 3.20 am: rise and shine
- 3.20 – 3.50 am: shower and bathroom routine
- 3.50 – 4.15 am: get dressed and cycle to the gym
- 4.20 – 5.50 am: asana practice
- 5.50 – 6.10 am: cycle home
- 6.10 – 6.50 am: pranayama
- 6.50 – 7.05 am: meditation
- 7.05 – 8.00 am: breakfast
- 8.00 – 12.00 pm: creative work (if I’m lucky)
- 12.00 – 1.00 pm: lunch
- 1.00 – 4.00 pm: administrative work (and procrastination of the same)
- 4.00 – 5.00 pm: light creative work and exercise
- 5.00 – 6.00 pm: dinner
- 6.00 – 9.00 pm: leisure time
- 9.00 – 3.15 am: sleep –> REPEAT
Depending on my current circumstances, the timing of the routine might shift but the durations remain the same. The reason why I do what to some might appear an excessively lengthy routine because for me, it is the foundation of happiness which is one of my ongoing projects.
I realise that this is a tricky schedule to maintain and I sometimes deviate from it; especially when I am travelling or during time of illness or injury. Also, you have to keep in mind that I have been doing this practice in one form or another for over ten years and in the beginning, my schedule wasn’t anywhere near what it is today. If you want to start exploring your own practice, my advice to you would be to find a good teacher and not to rush it. The key to a successful and sustainable practice is consistency, not speed or acrobatic ability. I am happy to share what I have learned so please feel free to reach out with any questions you might have.