It’s that time of the year where winter has overstayed its welcome and New Year’s resolutions are lost somewhere underneath layers of cozy wool sweaters. Spring is around the corner and it’s time to take ownership of your actions. Aside from the usual yoga tools- a mat, water bottle, and foam body rollers- here are a few tips that will help you along your journey to better health and a clearer mind:
Minimize and clean up. In yoga, there are eight foundational elements (also known as “limbs”) that help guide yogis along their journey. Within these is the virtue of purity. Even 5,000 years ago when yoga first originated, people knew that a clean environment is pivotal for having an open mind. Take an afternoon to give away, recycle or throw out what you don’t need, then organize what you do. The excuse that you’re “too busy to clean” doesn’t work anymore.
Make space. After you clean out everything, make a designated spot in your home for your self practice. It’s OK if the space is also used for something else (maybe you’re like us and live in a crowded city where space is sparse), just be sure that you can make it your own by rolling out your yoga mat and having your music nearby.
Write it down. Use a notebook to write down your goals every day. We aren’t just talking about checking off to-do lists (believe us, there is a place for that), but really think about what it is you want to achieve. If you aren’t exactly sure what your goal is, but you know you are working to something, use words to describe what you want. For example:
I am on this day thankful for my good health, warm bed and loving friends and family.
I shall radiate positivity and happiness. I shall attract those who will bring me closer to my goal. I am becoming stronger and learning more about myself today.
It can be the difference between just thinking it and actually doing it. Think it. Write it. Do it.
Be kind. Compassion and love for all living things is included in one of the eight limbs of yoga. This includes compassion for yourself! We know some days are tougher than others. Some mornings you wake up with a flu, a hangover, or maybe just a general disinterest in getting out of bed. Try writing and repeating to yourself “Today, I am becoming healthier.” Positive thoughts perpetuate positive actions. The same goes with negativity.
Be here. We know, we know. It’s easier said than done. Start by taking one action and make a conscious effort to pay attention and enjoy it every single day. For example, making breakfast or washing your hands. Take those moments to focus on nothing but what you are doing. This is a tool that will be very helpful even in the most stressful of days.
Now, turn off your computer and go do it! We’ll be back with more tips to help you along your journey.
Article by Christy Skarulis, Co Founder of Grip the Mat