How many times have we heard: turn that frown upside down, embrace the positive, look for the silver lining, I’m sure I could go on. The reality is, it’s not that easy and sometimes we need to be angry or sad to really process what is happening. It’s become socially unacceptable to be anything but upbeat and happy, when what is actually happening is suppression and angst. And so be mad. Be upset, be angry, be frustrated, cry into your pillow – and then do Yoga.
The literal translation of Yoga from Sanskrit is union – union of mind and body and through this union, connection. Connecting to our true Self, our own light within. Yoga teaches us that we are not our mind, we are not our body and we are not our emotions. Through movement (asana), breathing (pranayama) we are able to clear our mind of external thoughts and just be (meditation). The more we repeat this (daily if possible) the more centered we feel. This allows us to be in a more balanced state, the highs not quite so high and the lows not quite so low. When we are challenged, we are able to pause and process over reacting.
Yoga won’t stop bad things from happening, or amazing things either. However, with a regular Yoga practice we are able to process our thoughts and emotions somatically rather than having them build into stress, chronic tension or full out explosions. Yoga shows us that our emotions are okay. It helps us to weed through the obstacles in our life so that we prioritize what’s important and let go of what isn’t. Yoga teaches us that we are always enough.
So, come to your mat. Lie down, stay seated, spend a few minutes just being present. Notice any sensations in your physical body, where do you feel tension or where to you feel at ease. Now notice your breath. Without trying to change anything, just noticing. What comes next? Deeper breathing, slow movement, a big stretch? That is up to you. This is what self-practice is. Listening to our own bodies and allowing what needs to happen, happen. Slowly unwind, uncouple the stress from your body and in turn slowly your mind will follow. Trust the process.
In light and love.