Using the Transformative Power of Single Minded Focus to Lay Down the Burdens of the Past

In April 2011, hen Kid 2 was one year old, wifey and I were stuck in a rut whose final outcome was divorce, a fate neither of us wanted, but from which there seemed to be no escape.

At that time she determined to lose the last of her baby weight, and began a regular Bikram Yoga practice. In Bikram parlance, “regular practice” meant three or more times per week and, by coincidence, about a month later, I began a regular practice, too.

Over the following months, we sweated and strained in the Bikram hot box and by the end of the summer we noticed the most amazing thing; the problems we had communicating had melted away, and the danger to our marriage went along with.

The transformative power of single minded focus.

The benefits we gained from that summer (and subsequent years) of practice were manifold, but the most striking of them was we learned the transformative power of single minded focus.

In focusing solely on the next posture, the next move, sometimes just the next breath, we got out of our heads, and by doing so cleared away the garbage within them.

I’ve written about how that summer saved my marriage, but it did so much more. In learning to lay down the burdens of the past I absolutely became a better husband.

But I also became a better;

  • father to (then) two wonderful boys
  • son to my own parents
  • friend
  • engineer
  • etc.

While it worked miracles for me, the Bikram torture chamber is not the only path to focus. Any hard exercise, meditation, prayer, even a long walk in the woods will do.

The path to focus is not what is important. Finding that path is.