A regularly attended yoga practice can help to alert us when we’re in overdrive (using adrenaline-based energy as the main operating system) and helps to return us to our optimum operating system…one that comes from a relaxed state of mind/body...that being our original state.
Monday, June 20th was a special day for me…I was honored to have my birthday coincide with a gorgeous Strawberry Full Moon and the Summer Solstice! In reaching the end of another decade on Planet Earth, here’s a few things I’ve picked up along the way and try to practice every day:
Find ways to include other yoga practices such as breath work sessions; extra relaxation time-outs or nature walks (mindfulness time); reading texts that inspire you and make you feel good;
spending time with the people/animals you most love; or getting lost in your favorite project...as often as you can!
A tremendous resource for every aspect of yoga practice is located at www.yogajournal.com.
Here’s a link to two Yoga Journal videos on Sun Salutations (Surya Namaskar):
Bookmark and visit often! Then join in!
What happens when we don’t feel well enough to exert ourselves in a full practice of postures (Asanas)? I’ve personally discovered that’s when the introspective part of our practice comes into play. Over the last week, I’ve been challenged to rest more and “take care of my body”. I’ve wrestled with feelings from impatience (can’t believe health issues happen, even though I take care of myself?!?) to gratitude (how fortunate I am for the many, many years of excellent health that I’ve experienced) and yet another multitude of emotions that things are different than I want them to be right now.
My Yoga RX: I’ve practiced working to be more patient with myself and to truly live in the present moment. Breathwork, lots of rest and naps, outdoor walks when the weather feels inviting and reminding myself over and over that “this too shall pass”!
Here’s another way to bring yoga’s practices into our daily life: practice letting go, every day, on an emotional level. From life’s greater challenges to the day-to-day variety of petty annoyances, letting go is the key.
*“It has been said that to cling to resentment is to harbor a thief in your heart. For resentment robs you of your energy, your strength, your peace of mind and, ultimately, your ability to heal. It is not part of our nature to withhold Forgiveness.” *a lovely quote from Ralph Blum’s The Healing Runes, p. 105
Our first priority is our health…as the wise quote goes, “Our health is our wealth”. Invest in your future by attending yoga class this week. And then find at least one hour a day to invest in your health. Come to class to discover and practice ways to bring yoga into your daily life!
…and another superb quote to inspire us:
“Yoga, an ancient but perfect science, deals with the evolution of humanity. This evolution includes all aspects of one's being, from bodily health to self-realization. Yoga means union - the union of body with consciousness and consciousness with the soul. Yoga cultivates the ways of maintaining a balanced attitude in day-to-day life and endows skill in the performance of one's actions.”
Another affirmation to consider on why yoga is such a good preventative health maintenance choice is because opening and expanding the body is much more important (than merely tightening the muscular system) as we grow older, tempering the aging process. Amen.
One reason that yoga feels so good is that through the combination of stretching and strengthening our muscles and calm, even breathing, it activates our parasympathetic nervous system. In turn, we slow down which boosts our immunity and steadies our blood pressure. It can even help us to sleep better. The poses that help the most are those that encourage deep relaxation. If you tend to want to rush through your postures, try slowing it down a bit and hold them longer feeling supported by the breath. This is a great way to spend a lunch break and a great afternoon.
A Yen for Yoga
Yoga strengthens the mind and body, but sometimes the stress of daily life challenges our momentum. We hope this page inspires you and keeps you moving!