My favorite book growing up was the Little Engine That Could. The Little Engine tried and tried to make his way up a steep mountain side. To accomplish this task, he chanted to himself:
“I think I can. I think I can. I think I can. Choo Choo.”
That story resonated with me as a child. I believed then, as I believe now, that if I want something, I have to think that I can do it in order to achieve it.
I often find myself quoting the Little Engine That Could as an adult. I repeat to myself: “I think I can. I think I can. I think I can. Choo Choo.”
In yoga, we call that a mantra. A mantra is a phrase we repeat either to bring a sense of calm into the present moment, or to meditate on something.
A mantra can be as simple as “I breathe in; I breathe out”. The mantra becomes something to focus on that supersedes the chatter of the mind.
I particularly like the mantra of The Little Engine because it fuels my fire when my embers are dying. If I am running low on energy or determination, this mantra has never failed to see me through to the end.
The next time you need to light a fire under your seat, try using the wisdom of The Little Engine That Could.
I know you can. I know you can. I know you can.