Intentional Rest -
There is a saying - listen to your body whisper so you won't have to listen to it scream...
Intentional rest - like taking time out for mindful movement, meditation or guided deep relaxation, is something you can practice in order to keep your cup full and inner light shining brightly.
Intentional rest is something you really have to DO in order to gain benefits, it's not the same as relaxing on the couch in front of the tv, having a glass of wine, or going out with a friend. Those things can be relaxing yes, but Intentional rest goes beyond these things.
It is a practice of self care that takes you into a certain state, brain waves are at a certain frequency, and the body - mind is better able to heal, let go, release tension, improve interoception and process.
By practicing mindful yoga and guided deep relaxation you are taking that time to focus on intentional rest, your well-being, and refilling your cup.
Adopting a balanced approach and incorporating nurturing practices into your lifestyle you can counter the effects of stress and anxiety, improving your wellbeing, energy and quality of life.
By incorporating yoga nidra or meditation regularly to your self care regime - you may build self confidence and nervous system resilience. Not only that but improving vagal nerve tone and interoception.
By putting aside time for your selfcare you are you are letting your body, mind and spirit know that you are important.
Forming a habit for your practice is one of the keys. Try to set a time and place to do once a day or one to three times a week. Even if you don't have a regular practice, doing it whenever you can will still bring you benefits, so don't worry if you are irregular with the practice, just try your best to do it.
It has really helped me through many difficult times, it is not just a treat or reward that I have to 'earn', it's part of my ongoing practice and helps to bring clarity too. In fact you can incorporate an affirmation in your practice to help clarify and bring about life goals and to make your vision for your life come true. What a bonus!
Yoga Nidra is a systematic relaxation on all levels - you are guided through the process by the teacher as they take you through the many layers of self.
Systematically releasing all the parts of you, physical, mental and more.
It is very effective at reaching the deeper levels of tension...without any need for physical touch, it releases tensions that we may be holding in the body-mind, often for a very long time.
Because there is no physical touch it can be helpful for people who have experienced trauma, or have injuries or illnesses, that make other modalities where touch or movement is required uncomfortable or not possible.
In fact, you practice yoga nidra lying down, or can be in a supported seated position- and the whole idea is to be comfortable. During pregnancy you can side lie or stay seated with support in a semi reclined position. And it is a great practice for those who find seated meditation difficult.
I was lucky enough to have an amazing yoga nidra tohunga for over ten years. I learnt alot about this as a healing practice, a way to release past impressions and to really let go.
It was one of the most important things I did for myself during these years when I was a busy mum, business owner and yoga teacher.
My practice through these times was to do yoga nidra at least once a week - it was at the end of every yoga class I attended (and is at the end of every class I teach.) I also used a recording to do at home when I couldn’t make it to class, but also as a practice on it’s own.
During this latest lockdown that is now into its seventh week, I practiced daily for the first four weeks, and now am practicing a couple of times a week.
When you have completed the process you feel completely relaxed, some people may feel a little sleepy or drowsy when they first start practicing.
But eventually, as you become more aware, and more used to relaxing without falling asleep, this feeling passes and you come out feeling relaxed, sometimes blissful, yet energised and ready to face life again.
It allows us to FULLY relax and let go....
Some studies have shown it to be even more effective than listening to music, or walking in nature.
It gives the mind also a chance to rest and restore- there are no decisions to be made or choices to make during yoga nidra.
I feel that resting intentionally with Yoga Nidra - Rongoā Moemoeā, is an absolute gift for us in this world today ... the current time is very stressful for many, and as the saying goes, you cannot pour from an empty cup.
Yoga nidra is definitely a time to refill your cup.
You are deserving and worthy of your own care and compassion as much anyone else, you are worthy, and your health, well-being and happiness have a flow on effect to everyone around you too.
It is important to know that Yoga Nidra is a practice in and of itself- you do not need to be fit, flexible or have any fancy clothing or equipment to do it.
So as a stand alone practice you don't need to do yoga poses or breathing first, though you can do some of either if it feels good.
Simple poses and breathing for 5 - 10 minutes can be beneficial to encourage the body-mind to let go of tension and open up to receiving before you do the relaxation, but are not strictly necessary.
If you would like to come on a yoga nidra journey with me and experience it for yourself there is an amazing yoga nidra - deep relaxation video included in my online course - Aroha Nui Yoga for Calm - available here
The beauty of Yoga for Calm is that you can do my Deep Relaxation at anytime without having to go through the whole programme first.
Simply go to the Yoga Nidra Deep Relaxation section of the course and be prepared to finish feeling blissful…♥️
Or if you would like to experience the deep relaxation on it's own with my audio programme please get Rongoā Moemoeā - anyone can do this programme, there is no physical exercise in this practice. It's available here.
I highly recommend you try this practice as often as you can if you are feeling burnt out or stressed, or at least once a week as a part of your wellness/ self care routine for maintenance.
Make it a habit to love yourself and refill that cup!
Linsey ♥️ x
P.S I have combined the two programmes together, this gives you yoga asana and yoga breathing programmes PLUS three unique guided deep relaxations and a discount when you buy them together -
Rongoā moemoeā and Aroha Nui Yoga for Calm are available here