4 TIPS TO SLOW DOWN

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:

  1. 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.
  2. 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.
  3. 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!
  4. 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 health!

It’s that time again

TUNEin:CALM – WORKSHOP 10th NOVEMBER

Join us if you are in Zürich! Saturday afternoon, time to take 2 hours just for yourself; to feel your body, to flow and stretch, to get quite and eventually immerse into your inner world when deeply connected to your breath. You are your own medicine, get access to it.

It’s time to get quiet. It’s time to listen and slow down, soften and look within instead of around. Let’s tune in. Let’s do it together:

  • Flow – greet the sun – wake your body up softly: By synchronizing breath with movement, you will bring body and mind into alignment, getting into a flow, connecting sequences, calm and steady. You will gently wake your body up, saying hello to your muscles.
  • Yin Yoga – unstick the fascia – release tension: You will then ease into a yin sequence, holding postures for some minutes to reach the connective tissues and the fascia. On the way you might face some tension and this will be the moment to let go and release.
  • Breathwork – connect deeply – use your breath as your medicine: Finally, you are invited to a journey, using the power of your own breath, as a way of treating your body, mind, and spirit to its most rich and healing superfood. Music will support to find your rhythm while you allow yourself to just receive.

Are you in? Let me know and secure your spot here.

To bring: Comfy (yoga-) clothes, something to keep you warm during the breathing sequence, water

Energy exchange: CHF 40.-

10th November, 16:00 – 18:00, Stadtyoga, Zürich 

 

Experience the gap

December calls us to connection. To generosity. To lighting lights in the darkness. To moon bathing. Get your crystals out to clean and recharge during Sundays’ full moon!

Let’s take time to slow down, time to connect and breathe. As you gently breathe in and out, notice the space in between. The space between your inhales and exhales, your exhales and inhales. That space between your breath is neither in or out, there’s no activity. It is the present moment, it is your still point. The present moment is this moment, where time doesn’t exist. There’s no past, no future, now is all that is.

Don’t do anything but breathe and observe. Get used to it. Experience the present moment. Being, instead of doing.

This too is yoga.

Slow down 

I recently read an article about the visit of Sharath Jois in the US and him asking the question in class ‘Why you hurrying?’.

I felt caught red-handed. I hurry. All day long, no matter of being on the mat of off. I’m always in a rush, as if I could gain time this way. I’m restless. Too many tasks, too much to do next to my 100% job. Not complaining, as this is what I want, but dealing with it is just sometimes tough. So I need to remind myself, and feel free to join me, if this affects you too:

Yoga is not just the practice on the mat. Yoga is happening all day, 24h. Same rules. Stop hurrying on the mat, jumping from one asana to the next, driven by ‘what’s next’. Same off the mat, while doing one thing, already thinking about your next task? Keep your focus on what you’re currently doing. It’s about being and staying in the moment. Fully aware. This is the only option to put your full passion into it. And finally yogi, the only way to really enjoy what you’re doing!

Instead of labeling yoga as your physical practice, recognize yoga as your inner experience. Extend your physical practice to work on your willingness to be exactly where you are in this moment. Root yourself, find your balance and connect with yourself before moving on. Practicing Ashtanga, you know what comes next, no worries. You know how long your asana practice will be, so take this time. It’s not a competition, not about, ‘I did it in 80 minutes!’. If you have to skip postures or vinyasas for a certain reason, go for it. Always choose a modification if any possible and do what you do fully. Present. As always, your breath is a good indicator, use it wisely and be guided.

Let’s remind ourselves again and again. It’s worth it!