Many students of Yoga come to the practice with a wide array of habits that they wish to change or modify. Habits that dim our internal light may range from not managing our time well to negative thinking patterns. Some practitioners may even struggle with drug or alcohol addiction. Addictions to any substance, person or experience outside of us are often employed to numb physical or emotional pain; learning to regularly use the many tools that Yoga offers can be a very effective way of changing harmful and dimming mental and physical habits.
On a purely physical level, Yoga asanas, breathing exercises and meditation techniques offer a practitioner a comprehensive way to change physical habits, in order to create more ease and well-being in the body. A regular practice of physical postures, if performed in correct alignment, will retrain the body to be in balance while releasing deep seated stress and muscular tension. This is one of the reasons that receiving personal feedback from a professional Yoga instructor during class is so important.
If you find that you often practice alone, finding some time to attend a class once or twice a week with a certified Yoga teacher will provide you with the opportunity to receive feedback and guidance about how to perform the postures in optimal alignment. Retraining your body to stay in optimal alignment is one of the primary ways that the physical postures of Yoga can help to change physical habits that may be causing pain and discomfort in your body. Practicing under the watchful eyes of a certified Yoga instructor will provide you with valuable feedback about how you can optimize your practice to create greater energy and well-being.
On an emotional level, a regular practice of Yoga postures, breathing exercises and meditation techniques will quickly elucidate thinking patterns that create negative emotional states. Frequently, just slowing down enough to step on the mat and be present will immediately illuminate our own angry, impatient, self-critical, or negative states of mind. Instead of becoming more angry and impatient with ourselves, this awareness presents us with the opportunity to gently nurture and patiently reorient ourselves towards a more positive state of mind. Over time, a comprehensive Yoga practice will help to transform both negative physical and emotional habits into beneficial habits that are truly nourishing, strengthening and uplifting.
© Copyright – Virginia Iversen / Aura Wellness Center – Publications Division
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