I told my yoga students that there was something in the studio room right now that was contagious. What if I told you that the person next to you has something you can easily catch? In fact, probably will catch? What if I told you that it's not just the person next to you...everyone around you has something you are going to catch? That, in fact, you are going to catch it from everyone in your inner circle- your friends, family, neighbors. So, what is it you are going to catch? Stress. Research tells us that stress is contagious. This same research also tells us happiness is contagious. So the important question of the day is what and whom are you surrounding yourself with? Luckily for you if you are a yogi, everyone in class has the common goal of a happy, and peaceful svasana...pick up on that!
“People inspire you, or they drain you – pick them wisely.” – Hans F. Hansen
I thought this was kind of amusing... Dr. Mercola writes, "Other research has shown that people who are surrounded by many happy people are more likely to become happy in the future. The effect applies not only to those in close contact with the happy person, but also extends out to three degrees of separation. For instance, in relation to one happy person:
The spouse has an eight percent increased chance of happiness; The next-door neighbor has a 34 percent increased chance of happiness; A friend who lives within a mile has a 25 percent increased chance of happiness."
(Seriously?! Choose wisely with the spouse!)
One anecdote to stress is choosing mindfulness. I just watched the movie "Enough Said" with Julia Louis-Dreyfus and James Gandolfini. They go into a frozen yogurt shop and James' character is annoyed by the people trying all the different flavors in taste test cups; he feels they should commit.
I kept looking for the lesson in that but the thrifty side of me thought that made financial sense! But think about grabbing a tester cup and trying a flavor and being completely present to the nuances in that flavor. Then trying the next... It becomes a yummy lesson in being mindful and present.
"Surround yourself with only people who are going to lift you higher." Oprah Winfrey
As you begin to think about the people around you, begin to question what you are to them. Do you bring people up or pull them down. Are you the kind of person you would like to meet?
"Walk with the dreamers, the believers, the courageous, the cheerful, the planners, the doers, the successful people with their heads in the clouds and their feet on the ground. Let their spirit ignite a fire within you to leave this world better than when you found it."