Weaving yoga and meditation into your daily life…
For me, the definition of yoga is ever-changing. As I write this, I believe yoga is a continual and constant practice of presence and compassion. The physical strength we gain from asana is certainly beneficial, but what happens when we step off our mats and back into the hustle of our lives?
Whether we realize it or not, we have the opportunity to practice yoga and mindfulness all damn day. Hear me out. Of course I realize most of us lead very busy lives and believe there isn’t much time for such practice. Keep in mind yoga doesn’t always require a mat and leggings. When you start peeling away the layers you may realize it’s all “yoga.”
With that in mind, here are a few of my favorites ways to practice any time, anywhere:
Walking meditation — get outside!
Even a quick 15-minute walk around your hood will help to calm your nervous system. So many people are working inside all day with little exposure to natural light and fresh air. The connection between us and nature is so important for our mental and physical health, so walk it out!
Deep belly breathing. A mindful commute.
The morning rush is just part of the human experience. Most of us are familiar with the anxiety that can accompany rushing out of the house on the daily. Next time you commute, try practicing deep belly breath. Simply bring your attention to your belly. Start to extend the length of your inhale and your exhale and imagine your breath filling the space. Deep belly breath is a great way to calm nerves and stay in the sweetness of the moment.
Cultivating a daily meditation practice at home.
Finding time to sit quietly without distractions may prove difficult at times with hectic work and family schedules. A home practice can be incredibly nourishing and more accessible for some. My favorite way to meditate at home is by lying flat and putting my legs up the wall in bed with one hand on my belly and one hand on my heart. You may also find peace in unlikely activities like washing dishes or brushing your hair. Next time you clean up after a meal, try placing attention on your breath patterns and repeating internally: inhale peace, exhale doubt.