On New Year’s Eve, I slipped outside into the brisk midnight air to cool off with a friend. After a moment of contemplation, she posed the question, “So, Megan, what is one thing you would like to do more of this year, and one thing you would like to do less?”
I was immediately intrigued. Perhaps it was the idea of self-improvement without the label of a “New Year’s Resolution” or perhaps it was just the perfect order of her words; regardless, I smiled. Having never been someone to get hyped or too serious about such resolves, I’ve always felt that every day could be an opportunity for improvement. Without hesitation I responded, “Worry less, create more.” That night, I immediately began exploring the idea of creating more too. At first intention, my idea was literal – create more art – but the more I reflected, the more things in my life I saw that were just waiting to be created. Here are some ways that we, as hoopers, can create more and worry less in the year ahead for our hoops, our practice, and ourselves.
Create More Gratitude. Let’s face it – hooping can get kind of dangerous. Between bruises, broken bones and broken vases, there is always a learning curve, and it likes to leave it’s mark. Instead of harboring anger or frustration to the scuffs on our walls and ankles, be grateful for the process. Avoiding self judgment and celebrating where we are in our journey right now as being exactly where we are supposed to be is something we can spend a lifetime remembering, especially as students.
Create More Space. Literally and internally. The weather is always unpredictable, as well as everything else in the world. Find an indoor, private place and move some furniture (apologize to any roommates prior if you need to.) In my creative mode I realized that if I shove my kitchen table against the wall, I have the whole kitchen for practice without the cold or unwanted peeping toms. This realization was probably the best thing I could have created – I have so much more reason to enjoy my practice again!
On this note, I also think the new year calls for us to create more space on the inside of our bodies as well. Whether it is yoga, meditation, or running, remember that your hoop practice benefits from balance. I like to think of keeping up my mental and physical health as homework my hoop assigned to me – just so I can improve!
Create More Fun. It will never be said enough – this life was not meant to be taken so seriously. The world can be a whirlwind of negative feelings and habits, but we can grab our hoops, and spiral some fun back into it all! Turn on your favorite high school jams, put on a silly hat, or try some ridiculous trick that you could only imagine in your head. By creating more fun in our practice, we loosen up for everyday life and relax into the craziness of it all. This life is a roller coaster if you let it be, and if we find our amusement we can enjoy the ride.
Create More Self Love. As I get older, it becomes more and more apparent that so many things – including other people’s opinions of me – are out of my hands. What is in my hands? The hoop of course! And I like to believe my hula hoop loves me just as much as I love it. Things are as simple as you let them be, if something – or someone – doesn’t feel right, let it go. We’re deserving of all good things in life, and we’re too fascinating for criticism!
Create a New Hoop! Of course, the best thing we can create is a new hoop! If you’re a seasoned hoop maker, try something wild and out of this world that you don’t even think is possible – see what happens. If you’ve never made your own hoop before, now is the time! Hooping.org has so much information on making all kinds of hoops, and how different tapes and tubings work. Take this new year as an opportunity to express yourself with originality – and maybe some super cool glitter tape in the process!
While I may not be one for new year resolutions, this year I’m taking the simple approach; one thing more, one thing less, no pressure. All in all, our entire experience is a creation of consciousness. How we view ourselves, our hoops, and the world is a vantage point we are continuously making. Why not create it with love and positive intention? This year, I invite you to let go of specifics and make an effort to forgive, let go, and create all around you. I look forward to seeing all the beautiful masterpieces of your lives!
Megan Smith, aka Sati Flow, is a poet, artist, yogini and hooper based in Knoxville, Tennessee, USA. She has been hooping since 2011 and writing for as long as she can remember. Follow her hoop teachings, performances, writing and more on her website, satiflow.com!