Stress Buster: Yoga to Calm & Clear Your Mind
You know exactly what I am talking about. You come out of a yoga class and suddenly feel like a new person: one who can conquer the world, one who can model patience and peace, one who is confident and CALM.
This feeling of complete rejuvenation is what brings us back to our mat time and time again. It pieces together our lives and makes us exclaim “hallelujah” because the truth is: this exact feeling is what we wander around our whole lives trying to find and re-create.
So why exactly does yoga make us feel so calm?
Essentially, the calming principles of yoga are the reason people say that yoga is not just a practice of physical endurance, strength, or flexibility. Instead, it is a practice of life. One that we can bring into our day to day lives so that we may begin to understand our psychological and emotional bodies. When you step onto your mat you commit to cultivating a life that seeks to understand instead of react. A life that harvests intention and releases destructive emotional patterns and memories. Our psychological and physical bodies work through all these things as we move and breath through each of the postures, and by the end of the class we have moved around stale energy that has been stuck, released thoughts and emotions that are no longer serving us, and allowed emotions to move through us instead of building homes within us.
On a cellular level, yoga reduces stress hormones such as cortisol and adrenaline to induce a relaxation response. In other words, our bodies learn how to operate using the parasympathetic nervous system instead of the sympathetic nervous system. This keeps us away from using a “fight or flight” response when situations arise in daily life.
What does this mean? It means that instead of resisting or running from situations that make us feel fearful, insecure, sad, or angry so that we can escape the feelings all together… we simply sit with the emotions and start examining our own psychological patterns in a more organic “roots out” manner. Now we can get to the bottom of why certain things make us feel fearful, insecure, or sad and transcend them entirely. This is when we release the emotional imprints we have on our heart and begin to move forward.
This is when calm becomes a permanent mental environment; when yoga goes from the mat into real life.
This is when we transcend who we were and move towards who we want to be, who we have the potential to be.
Have you ever had a moment of transcendence on your mat? I'd love to hear about it, COMMENT BELOW!