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Reconnect with yourself

Reconnect with yourself

As I am aging I am finding my heritage and my love  for Yoga again. I have been immersing myself in yoga/ trainings/ and certifications from Kripalu. My recent immersion has been in Yoga Nidra with Jennifer Reis. The practice of Yoga Nidra opened my inner self for a deeper connection with myself.

Feel like a hamster caught in a wheel

I have often felt like a hamster caught in a wheel, running in the same place trying to get to places, yet each day turns into another and another and another. Though technology is all around us, we can connect with people loved ones right away yet there is overwhelming sense of loneliness and disconnection. There is so much social media noise that it has become impossible to hear oneself. In this blog I will not venture into comparison and ego but that is definitely coming. Working on a new space Shakti has brought its own challenges and small wins too. I have felt a deeper need to reconnect and be present. I wanted to share a few of my go to practices, in the hope that you might find them useful too.

It is not about controlling, it’s about being present, being open, being aware and allowing it to come.

Being one with your body

Most of us have experienced different forms of trauma, for some of us disconnecting with our body is a way to deal with it, for some of us our body image brings us pain of different kind. No matter how hard it seems but the truth is reconnecting with our body is the first step to grounding ourselves and being present in the present moment. Our body houses our soul/spirit, before we can reach deep within we need to connect with our body. I have found Yoga Nidra to be one of those practices, it brings a great amount of awareness to all 5 Koshas, and wherever awareness goes consciousness follows. On a wider level I believe both practices of Yoga and dancing bring great awareness to body, simple attention to breath brings attention to our body and to the present moment. It allows you to get out of your head and experience the magic of breath that we all take for granted.

In today’s world there is constant comparison of ourselves to others, our worth is defined by career achievements and financial standings. Just like the hamster in a wheel, this is an endless cycle. Breaking this cycle requires jumping off the wheel, from time to time to reconnect with our beautiful body, reconnect with our true being. Yoga Nidra is one of those practices that helps ground you and reconnect with Annamaya Kosha.

All problems are the illusions of the mind ~ Eckhart Tolle

Getting to know breath and the mind 

Once we connect with our body the next is to focus on your breath, your “prana”. Your energy, something that happens automatically yet is vital for our existence. We rarely give it attention. Attention to our breath brings us back to us, especially when our mind that is like a child, that is constantly worried, has doubts, self criticism, and obsesses. Guided meditation such as Yoga Nidra, guides us to its tantrums. Brings our awareness to it. With the breath grounding us in our body and our intellect noticing the inner child, we are bringing ourselves to the present moment.

What happened in the past stays there and future is not here, what we have is the NOW. Take in the present with your entire being. This practice can be very jarring because it will bring you face to face with your inner turmoil, however it will also make you realize it is your own creation. It will help you cultivate love for yourself, more compassion for yourself and others. It will bring you closer to you.

When there is a surge of restlessness| anxiety or when we feel overwhelmed, returning our focus to our breath can bring calmness. For some of us sitting meditation is hard, in that case dancing, walking are perfect to center ourselves.

You can not control what goes on outside, but you can always control what goes on inside.

Acceptance and writing

Am I about to say journaling?? Yes I am, we tend to run away from our feelings,  we need to allow for us to process it fully be aware of it and accept it. This is where writing and journaling comes in. Journaling allows us to explore our thoughts and feelings further, allows us to go deeper and to the root causes which brings on greater awareness and hence acceptance without judgement or criticism Journaling has the potential of uncovering all the layers. It is like a deep conversation with ourselves, that forces us in a way to explore further and hopefully brings us closer to the answer of “who am I”.

These 3 practices can help us with deeper connection to ourselves, thereby leading us to live fuller lives, greater self love, and a sense of belonging.

Hope you join us for a yoga and mindfulness at our Yoga Nidra classes at  Shakti Yoga Nidra, 

Love And Light Always
Neelam Kataria

MINDFULNESS: TAKE TIME TO DO NOTHING

TAKE THE TIME TO DO NOTHING CONNECT WITH YOURSELF

MINDFULNESS

Have you taken time to do nothing absolutely nothing at all. It is much harder than you would imagine. My recent experience in restorative and meditation class at the studio had me “woke” . As a child growing up in a village I spent a lot of time doing nothing because of various reasons (which I shall not bore you all with) however over the years I have had my mind taken over by so many things that I have forgotten the art of spending time doing nothing.

During the session Kristen explained the process so beautifully, not verbatim however this is how I understood it. Imagine yourself surrounded by dark thunderstorms, thunderstorms being your thoughts, close your eyes, you rise above the dark clouds and witness the dark clouds observe them and let them pass. That was so beautifully explained, because you are so much more than your worries, your struggles, for that matter even your happiness, these are things that happen to you but how you receive them is where mindfulness lies.

I can honestly say that the hardest was to settle down for 3 minutes, while we were being led through our meditation. I was astounded by how hard it is to NOT run away with your thoughts. I came out feeling happy from that class. If you “think” about it, our beautiful mind is the most significant part of our body. We depend on it to make us our best, to be creative. We experience moments, be kind and thoughtful, it makes us focused and spontaneous. We spend so much time and wealth on our clothes, make up, hair, cars but when it comes to our mind we do not give it a “thought”.

In our society we have grown to be so distracted, we are no longer present in the moment and we miss out on life. We are continuously lost in thought and living our lives on autopilot. According to a study conducted by Harvard university we are lost in thought 47% of the time, which means that for half of our life we are not in the present moment, we are either lost in the past or future. Have you noticed that a simple thought of being fearful brings on the feelings of fear and then we conjure up scenarios of that fearful interaction, we get anxious about being anxious and it becomes an endless cycle.

How do we become mindful and practice mediation, it is about stepping back giving yourself 5 to 10 minutes a day, see your thoughts with a clear relaxed focused mind. Start with a minute or two by just focusing on your breath, no fancy seats required, you can do it in your car, while you are waiting or drinking your coffee. Try it, remember you can’t change everything that happens to you but you can change the way you experience it AND that is the potential of meditation and mindfulness.