Last weekend I attended an inspirational talk and yoga workshop with former WWE Champion and Yoga instructor, Diamond Dallas Page (DDP.) Now wrestling and yoga seem like a bit of an unlikely combination, but bear with me while I explain what I learned from the weekend.
Once Upon a Time
It was a few years ago when I first came across Arthur the Paratrooper’s inspirational transformation video on You Tube.What struck me about this story was the deep-seated desire Arthur had to reclaim his life and his dedication towards achieving this. Arthur approached several yoga teachers, who all refused to work with him, due to his extensive injuries. Then came along DDP, who took a chance to help a stranger rebuild his life.
The video and Arthur’s transformation stuck with me, but I didn’t really give it anymore thought than it was a nice story. About a month ago, my sister tagged me on the Facebook page for the DDP Yoga Workshop that was coming to Glasgow. I was intrigued and convinced her to tag along with me to learn more and to do a little yoga too!
Let’s get started
The room was filled with 71 eager yoga and wrestling fans, all waiting to experience DDP yoga. Unlike us, most of the people there were already practicing DDP yoga and they knew what we were in for. The workshop started with the man himself, going around the room, shaking hands with everyone and introducing himself. This personal touch made me feel welcome and made the inspirational messages which followed even more potent.
Choose your life
‘You get to decide each day if you’re going to have a bad day, a good day or a great day!’ This was the first little nugget, he shared with us. Kind of obvious that we get to choose our own life, and can directly influence what kind of experience we will have on any given day. Linking to the quote that life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you react to it – I immediately sat up and was prepared to listen intently.
Running through walls
We all face dilemmas and challenges, but our attitude and approach to them can have a major impact on how we face and ultimately overcome them. The DDP workshop came at the right time for me. Yoga by Gillian was going through a period of massive changes – classes changing, new classes starting, workshops and retreats in the works and I was feeling uncertain about the future. Spending a few hours with this wrestler helped me to see things from a fresh perspective. Yes, there will be walls put up in the path to where I want to go, but I need to figure out how to get over, under, round or even through them. I can create my own life, and everything in it – as long as I am acting from a positive and genuine place.
Attitude of Gratitude
Speaking about his own personal ‘walls,’ DDP described becoming a 3 time Champion, overcoming injury and proving his naysayers wrong. Yet one thread always remained – he expressed and genuinely felt gratitude towards those who supported him along the way. His gratitude even extended to those who stood in his way. We’ve all heard the ‘attitude of gratitude’ adage, but how many of us look for ways to feel grateful, genuinely, with our whole heart, grateful.
A 3-hour workshop taught me different focus in familiar yoga postures. But it also helped me to see my journey through life through fresher eyes. I have spent the last week letting the lessons settle into my psyche, and have made small changes in my life. I’m trying to be kinder than necessary in all my encounters. This also involves letting things go, things that would normally bother me for days. A small amount of kindness is making space for me to express more gratitude.
Basically, I learned a lot! Sometimes the lessons we need to learn come from the most unlikely places. I would never have dreamt that meeting a former wrestling champion would inspire me to make small changes to improve myself, but it did. When the student was ready, the teacher appeared.