Yoga and Mindfulness are wonderful self care practices to help manage your health and well-being, particularly if you are experiencing changes in your life that may leave you feeling overwhelmed.
Yoga has been around for many centuries, originating out of India, possibly dating back as early as 3000 BCE and was brought to the West by Indian Yoga gurus in the 19th and 20th Centuries1.
Indian Gurus brought yoga to the Western World in the 19th Century and it’s now widely practised to build strength in both the mind and body, increase flexibility, and manage stress and anxiety. Yoga creates a positive mind and a healthy body.
What is Yoga?
Yoga is a practise that leads us to union. An opportunity to create harmony between the mind and body, with our communities, and with nature. It is an opportunity to come home within ourselves and be at peace with what is.
By developing a regular yoga practise, we can learn to honour where we are at with our own personal experiences. It allows us to move in a way that will unlock stuck energy and create space in the body and in the mind. It is a powerful tool if you learn to embrace the journey that Yoga offers.
Yoga helps us to open our hearts, to feel well and to cease the fluctuations of the mind. Yoga is made up of 8 limbs, and they are ways in which we live our lives in a more meaningful and purposeful life.
The 8 Limbs of Yoga are:
- Yama: Restraints, moral disciplines and views
- Niyama: Positive duties or observances
- Asana: Yoga postures
- Pranayama: Breathing techniques
- Pratyahara: Sense withdrawal
- Dharna: Focused concentration
- Dyana: Meditation and being completely focused
- Samadhi: Bliss or enlightenment
What is Mindfulness?
Mindfulness is an opportunity to bring our experiences and emotions inward, focusing on the present moment to let go of future thoughts, judgement, and expectations. With practise, mindfulness creates a sensation of inner peace.
You can practise mindfulness anywhere! It may be in the car on the way to work, resting on a sunny deck, or sitting at the beach. It’s simply taking a moment in your day to create space so that you can be still and breathe.
Often we put many expectations on ourselves to do more, when often we just need to stop and take some time to reconnect and allow the activity of the day to wash away.
Benefits of Yoga & Mindfulness
Yoga can create many shifts in our lives, both on and off the mat. The 8 limbs - each of which offer guidance on how to live a more meaningful life - allow us to mindfully connect within and to help move in a way that serves our unique bodies. Yoga teaches us that everything happens at exactly the right moment and we are simply here to enjoy the experience.
Mindfulness allows us to move towards the present in a more peaceful way. It supports us to shift perspective and not sweat the small stuff. When we allow our bodies to completely let go and surrender to the experience right here right now, we will be in harmony with ourselves.
With beginning a new practise, it can sometimes feel overwhelming, so here are some simple ways to get started.
4 Simple Ways To Bring Yoga and Mindfulness Into Your Life
1) Find A Local Yoga Studio Or Online Yoga Class
It’s important to find a studio or online class that suits you. With all that is changing in our world there is an abundance of wonderful classes available online and so many different kinds of yoga to meet you where you’re at. You may be looking for a more active style such as Hatha or Bikram, or perhaps a slow Yin class that is more restorative. Take a look around at what is on offer and remember that everyone else in the class was a beginner once.
Most studios and online teachers will offer some type of mindfulness also, whether that be Guided Meditation or Yoga Nidra, which is known as yogic sleep. Being part of a community is super important in helping maintain your mental health and well being, particularly during times of change or discomfort.
Yoga will create many positive shifts in your body, mind and spirit. Open your heart and allow the journey to unfold just as it should.
Our Chakra Blends compliment any type of Yoga and Mindfulness practise perfectly. You might like to diffuse during a session at home or add a drop or two to a piece of aroma jewellery to take with you to class.
2) Schedule In Your Yoga and Mindfulness Practise
Schedule time for you to support your mental wellbeing and to take time out of your busy life. We get so busy doing, so busy being, and so busy giving to others that our wellbeing can sometimes end up at the bottom of the to-do list. Mindfulness will help us to give and receive more freely.
For you it may be walking in the forest, going to your favourite yoga studio, or time on your own in a lovely cafe. Whatever the choice, make it a part of your life and notice how this makes you feel.
It is said that consistent mindfulness practices will trick the brain into cultivating deep inner peace and a calming nervous system.
We all need time to reflect and be present, our world is forever changing as are we and it is ok to not have anything to do or anywhere to be. Taking time out of your busy life for you to receive will create positive changes and enhance the quality of a more meaningful life.
Relaxation Lifestyle Blend is a beautiful oil to help you make time for you and feel good doing it.
3) Practise Mindfulness Upon Rising
Often we reach for our phone or start our days in a rush but starting your day mindfully is the perfect way to live with intention. Create the atmosphere with soft music, a candle, a warm blanket around your shoulders whilst you sit in your favourite chair.
Place two drops of Meditation Lifestyle Blend into the palms of your hands and take in some long, slow, deep breaths. Use this time to be grateful for this very moment. Mindfulness, in the morning, will help to prepare you for a balanced and successful day ahead.
Mindfulness also helps to balance the senses, soften the breath, and slow your heartbeat as you become more in control with the energy of the earth beneath you and around you.
4) Create A Space In Your Home Where You Can Be Present
Having a sacred space in your home is a very special offering to yourself. You may create this in an empty space in your bedroom, a study area, or perhaps the verandah or outside near your favourite tree. Whatever works for you. Decorate this with fresh flowers, a warm rug, cup of your favourite tea, and maybe a nice book of positive quotes that you can enjoy. Make room for a yoga mat and comfy pillow if you have the space.
To create the mood we suggest diffusing Tasmanian Lavender Essential Oil to enhance deep peace. It is said that lavender is the oil of peace and a very gentle way to help you be still.
Take A Moment To Breathe
When everything becomes too much, it can feel like starting a new practise or habit is just another item on your to-do list. If you feel like this, taking some time out to establish a yoga or mindfulness practice could be exactly what you need!
Keep it simple and start small. A few minutes a day to just focus on your breathing could be enough to get started. This is your chance to surrender.
Stop, take a moment and relish in the journey of life.
About the Author - Beck Hall
Beck is a passionate Yoga Teacher specialising in Yin Yoga, Meditation and Yoga Nidra. She is also our National Sales Manager here at Zea Relief. When you don’t find her helping our Wholesale Customers bring Zea Relief into your local store or clinic, you will find her teaching Yoga, out in nature, walking the beach and planning special catch ups with family and friends! Beck also has a very special and very adorable Golden Retriever, Mabel.
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- Zimmer, Heinrich. Philosophies of India. Princeton University Press. 1951.
- Tolle, E. The Power of Now: A Guide To Spiritual Enlightenment. 2004
- Valentine, M. The Little Book of Mindfulness. Buddhaimonia Publishing. 2014.