Yoga to replenish your energy bank account
Around me I hear that people are busy. Schools, companies, courses ... everything is in full swing. At the same time, we are now also halfway of the autumn season, which is the Vata season in Ayurveda. A season that is characterized by the cold and windy properties.
So instead of just pushing through, this season asks for warmth, rest and regularity. But rest is not the same thing as inactivity. Autumn is definitely a time to continue with your yoga practice (or to come back to your practice of course). For example, yoga postures can support your lymph system. Something your immune system will thank you for!
So let’s talk about the worthwhile habit to practice yoga (instead of keeping our focus at being 'busy'). So for this yoga blog, I have collected a few recommendation to help you to maintain your yoga practice.
Replenish your energy bank account
Intuitively we know that yoga does a lot for us in challenging periods. But especially when you are busy, it can be difficult to make time for self-care. Though, the effect of a continuous yoga practice could bee seen as creating interest on interest. Hereby, each yoga practice increases your energy bank account. Because of this energy, you will also act differently (at least I hope so) off-the-mat. For example by being more creative and motivating or because it helps you to prioritize. As a result, you won’t have to withdraw that much energy from your energy bank account in comparison to situations without these kinds of self-care tools.
With your next yoga practice, there is less need for a 'quick fix'. You can maybe add some more technique and awareness and multiply more energy. Because that is also what we do with yoga: we give energy with our input and multiply it, so that we receive more energy back than we have given. At least, that is the intention...
Since the effects of your yoga practice will last for at least 24 hours, you will build up a lot of energy interest on interest by practicing yoga on a daily basis. And if you feel like you really need a day of physical rest, then maybe a yoga nidra or yin yoga session is an option. Personally, I then love to work on some hip openers like pigeon pose.
Motivator that also works on the challenging days
Why can it then be so difficult to keep on practicing daily, year after year? Because we are very good in avoiding direct pain and looking for immediate pleasure. The moment you have physical pain, it is easier to motivate yourself to do your yoga practice to correct that. The moment this is gone (for a moment), it can be more difficult to maintain your yoga practice. This is because giving priority to your yoga practice could mean creating pain in other areas. For example, because you would have to say no to other 'obligations'. And that could feel uncomfortable. Or it could result in a confrontation you would rather not have. Or just because that couch feels so comfortable.
If you feel that it would help you consistently practice yoga on a regular basis, but it is not happening so far, it can be worthwhile to investigate what is holding you back. For example by examining how three types of motivators (pain, incentive and growth) affect you. And what it takes to make the decision to just practice, again and again. Read more about this in THIS yoga blog. Here you will also find some questions that help you to figure out your why behind your why. To help you figure out the solution that works in your unique situation.
What also could help is tuning in on how you feel at that moment and what you could do to feel better from the perspective of the gunas (a subdivision of properties in nature). Even though I have a lot of discipline for the practice of my yoga postures, the moment just before my practice could sometimes still be tricky. Then, it helps me to feel what I need most at that moment.
When I feel that my energy is a little bit stagnated, which makes me feel like I don’t want to move (which belongs to the guna 'tamas'), I now know that this feeling usually disappears after 2 to 3 sun salutations or a few backbends. And only having to do a few postures feels easy and doable in comparison to deciding if I am going to practice for 2 hours or not. By using these yoga postures as an tool to analyze where you are at that moment, you can then further fine-tune your yoga practice for that day. But usually already just a few yoga postures energize me enough (fitting with the guna 'sattva'), to almost keep on practicing by itself. Not because I have to, but because it feels good.
Sometimes the resistance to get on my yoga mat is caused by a long to-do list. Which can make me feel stressed, agitated and/or unconcentrated (signs of the guna 'rajas'). In such cases, it helps me to first tap into my inner guidance. By sitting in silence or writing in my journal. Then it appears behind my feeling that I would not have time for my yoga practice to often have a feeling of insecurity. That if I wouldn’t be doing my to do list first, I wouldn’t be ‘perfect’ and enough. Signs that I need my yoga practice actually even more that day. And to trust that what has to be done will be done. That what has to happen will happen. By practicing my yoga practice, I can be better at service for others by being more kind, create and focused.
By the way, those few minutes that it only takes to align myself with my inner guidance, also helps me to finish my to-do list with more focus and flow. And if I really planned too much for one day, I can still decide to stay on my yoga mat for only 10 minutes. But also those ten minutes help me during the rest of the day. And it makes it easier to practice again tomorrow by keeping up my habit.
Recommendations to continue practicing yoga consistently:
- Remind yourself that if you practice yoga consequently, you also function as an example for the people around you. That they feel that they are also allowed to make time for self-care.
- Dedicate your yoga practice to someone else. This motivates you AND has effect on the other.
- Discover your 3 motivators to practice yoga consistently in THIS yoga blog.
- Go to yoga workshops to learn new things. So that you are motivated to get on your yoga mat to practice these things.
- Recommendations to go to your yoga classes more often are to be found in THIS yoga blog.
- Combine your yoga practice in a yoga school with a yoga home practice. Recommendations to start a home yoga practice can be found HERE.
- Transform your resistance in (head)space. Read about it in THIS yoga blog.
- Use a yoga challenge where you practice yoga X time a week. Read about this in the yoga blog ‘From yoga challenge to daily yoga practice’
Enjoy your YogaHabits© today with love and light!
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