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Pilates, small changes, and resolutions to lighten our load‏‏

הדס לוינשטרן ב"צמאה"
Translation by Yehoshua Siskin
I was not even supposed to be there -- in the auditorium where Hadas Levenstern lectured before hundreds of women. I had already finished my presentation early in the evening. But I began to listen to Hadas and stayed glued to my chair. Here are two ideas of hers that have accompanied me since last night:
"Who among you does Pilates?" she asked. "In Pilates, the focus is on moves that engage large muscle groups, if not the entire body, and are generally easy to perform. But the small, delicate Pilates moves are much more difficult, even though they are barely felt. What is true in Pilates is true where inner change is concerned as well. It is comparatively easy to make revolutions with bulldozers as compared to making small changes with a tweezer.
I did teshuva years ago but it was easier to make the move to suddenly quit eating cheeseburgers than to improve my character traits, a process that requires small, yet much more challenging moves than swearing off non-kosher food.
Hadas continued with another important message. "Today there is a tendency to take upon ourselves more and more, to fill up our daily calendars with little room to breathe. I am trying to do teshuva on this sort of perfectionism. Women always ask, 'What can I add to my routine?' and I say 'Don't add, take away. Do less.' Gather strength from taking away two tasks from your daily routine. Sometimes the best resolution we can take upon ourselves is to do less.
Everyone is invited to resolve to make small, if challenging, changes in life, and to lighten the load that they carry.


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