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I hear it all the time, “I ‘m not flexible. I can’t do yoga.”
The truth is, you’re inflexible because you don’t do yoga. (this applies to the mind as well, by the way). Yoga is literally for every body. Because the essence of yoga is union ~ of body, mind, heart and spirit, the practice of it, no matter how quiet or rigorous, is about bringing more awareness to every aspect of your Being. It’s not important that you can twist your body into a pretzel – most people can’t – even yoga teachers. What’s important is that you spend some time each day on your mat to be present with your body, mind, and spirit. That is, really feeling your body & the messages it is sending you, the state of your mind and emotions, and connecting to your soul – that aspect of you that is perfect just as it is.
Commit to at least 10-15 minutes of gentle stretching and breathing each day and feel the difference it will make in your strength, flexibility, and balance. This translates to strength, flexibility, balance in your life. Commit to trying it for a month – take a class, buy a book, watch a video, or Google “gentle yoga”. There are many resources out there to help you learn, even classes online. Yoga is a practice that can always take you deeper so you do not need to learn everything at once. See if you don’t notice a difference in yourself after several weeks. So relax, stretch and breathe! You’ll find yourself craving it and noticing even more when you don’t do it.
Tip # 2 ~ Meditation
The practice of meditation is a wonderful tool for cultivating inner peace, balance, harmony and health in all areas of your life.
If you are new to the practice, begin with 5 minutes (you have 5 minutes) in the morning just after you get up. Just begin to breathe deeply, expanding the belly and the chest, and allow your attention and awareness to be on the breath. As thoughts come (and they most definitely will), simply and gently, with effortless ease, guide your attention back to your breath. Beginning a meditation practice, is not going to automatically clear your mind. It takes practice and discipline which is the most important part. Within very little time, you will begin to see the effects in your life, which will be your incentive to continue.
If you are an experienced meditator, take your practice up a notch to 20-30 minutes twice a day; ideally, first thing in the morning and between the end of work and dinner. Meditation is a beautiful way to transition into the evening hours of Kapha time when we should be winding down in preparation for sleep.
Most importantly, relax and enjoy your practice. The time you meditate will expand automatically as long as you are gentle and patient with yourself.
Now… take a deep breath and Enjoy…. !by