When you step on your mat next time, no matter if you’re in class or practicing on your own, do one thing: take your practice serious. It’s not a fun tool, a fitness regime or anything to tone your body. It’s about you. It’s about quietening your mind, while your body is moving.
No matter how many people are around you or if you’re on your own: your practice is about you, only you. Don’t care about the postures. Do it. Flow through.
Keep on going, stop complaining. No, it‘s not too hot, it’s not too cold and no, you are not too busy. Practice. Move your body and give your mind a conscious break. Find peace in yourself. This little smile that no one can see and everyone sees.
Many times meditation has been a topic I wrote about,
and in these times of intense stress, I won’t stop to point out how important
it is to slow down and be in stillness.
Our minds tend to be overloaded, and many of us experience
a constantly buzzing busy mind. Just ignoring this fact and allow the stress to
manifest can lead to health issues. Stress can take a serious toll on your body
on all levels, physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual. This makes it so
important to have breaks, clear the mind, calm down and be still. Your health
needs a relaxed and calm starting place to function optimally.
Here comes meditation into play, as this is a great
tool to calm down with effects on all levels. You don’t like it? Can’t do it? Give
it a different name. Get behind the idea. It’s crucial to quieten your mind and
be in stillness, no matter how you do it or how you call it. As an important
note, it’s not about just getting rid of your thoughts. Even if shushing your
many inner voices is the main goal, you should let them have their say, so you
can discover the all-encompassing stillness. Allow thoughts to pop up,
appreciate them and let them go. This is the whole exercise. Let’s repeat: it’s
all about accepting the thoughts as they come up, and then releasing them.
Sounds easy, but it only works if you stop judging
yourself when your mind starts to wander. Sitting in stillness isn’t
easy, so why don’t you start with this to help you stay focused and reel you
back in if your mind gets too busy:
- Focus on your breath: Bring your attention to your breath. Let it go into your belly, long, slow deep inhales and full exhales. Whenever your mind starts to wander, bring your attention back to your breath. Again and again and again. Just that.
- Guided meditation: Use a guided meditation to focus on the voice your hear and following that voice, so your thoughts don’t have much space. You can use an app for this or check my meditations on YouTube – I will record more for you and upload there. Go with the voice that makes you feel calm and settled, otherwise it won’t work well.
- Start easy: just some minutes will do the job when you start. Slowly you might want to increase the time, but be gentle and allow yourself to get used to it!
- Practice regularly: Make it a regular practice and go for the same time each day. This way it becomes a habit and you can stick to it. Start once a day, maybe right after getting up in the morning or before sleep in the evening. When feeling comfortable with it, you might want to increase the duration and/or ad another short slot during the day.
Learning how to quiet your mind and
have a regular practice can have a big impact on your life. And your