In our culture we are bombarded by big amounts of stressful activities though the day. These activities tent to take us to exhaust the nervous system; leaving us susceptible to depression or anxiety. The great news is that a gentle relaxation can release unnecessary fears or overwhelming feelings and thoughts. If you are or have been feeling out of balanced, stressed or anxious, this is a great post for you to read and follow. Yoga is well-known to be a relaxing exercise that uses breath and slow movements to relax the body and quiet the mind.
I want to share with you a few yoga activities and poses that I love to do, and that you can practice at home anytime that you feel stressed and out balanced:
Ujjayi Pranayama - Victorious Breath.
In yoga we always start connecting the breath with movements to bring our attention to the present. To practice Ujjayi breath, find a comfortable place to seat down with as little distractions as possible. If comfortable close your eyes (you don’t have to. You can always find something to stare at) and find a straight spine. Start breathing deeply in and out through your nostrils. After a couple of breaths bring your breath attention to the back of your throat by making a whisper sound pressed back to your throat. With each breath find more length and depth. If you want a little more, you can add movements with your arms by extending them out and up to the sides on the inhales and out and down on the exhales.
Viparita Karani - Legs up the wall.
This is a very easy pose to do. You can practice this pose morning or night; using a wall or the back of your bed. To start sit down with your hips close to the wall and rest your back on the ground while your legs get extended up the wall. Look to have your hips as close to the wall as possible and if needed, you can place a block or a pillow under your hips. Stay here using ujjayi breath from 5 to 10 minutes (or more).
To get out out the pose roll to one side and stay there for a couple of breaths and slowly get out of the pose.
This pose will slow your heart beat, bring you ease, and help you have a good sleep.
Adho Mukha Svanasana - Downward-facing dog
Come to forward fold pose and walk your hands forward until you find your body on a triangle shape with your hips up to the sky. You can bend your knees as much as comfortable and where you feel your spine straight. Open your hands wide and press them down into the ground. From there, extend your arms and bring length into your spine up to the hips and then down through the legs and heels (even if they don’t touch the ground). Stay in this pose as long as you want and need to. You can always come down in hands and knees to rest and come back to the pose as many times as you want. This pose activates the legs and feet to ground yourself by strengthening your roots. So, it’s is great idea to close your eyes while in the pose and imagine passing any unnecessary energy to the ground and shift it into nourishment and well-being.
Besides the yoga poses and breath, other things that are suggested in the yoga practice are:
To use essential oils, like lavender in a warm bath tub.
Drink a cup of tea like chamomile
Walk everyday 10-15 minutes
These yoga exercises like Ujjayi breath can balance the mind and body when air gets into the nostrils and goes to the lungs and the oxygen moves into both sides of your brain and the blood and nervous system; activating them. It’s nice to find stillness and presence on each breath.
For more information about how I personally shifted my depression and anxiety into a marvelous life, please check my post “Let’s choose: depression and anxiety or a Marvelous life”. Remember that the main idea is to learn, keep practicing and enjoy the present moment with each breath.
From my heart to yours,
Namaste - Cecilia de la Rocha
Cecilia de la Rocha is founder of Yoga By Cecilia de la Rocha, a creative and enthusiastic yoga instructor with professional training in hatha & anusara yoga. Always willing to share more with people in a different, loving & fun ways. Her teaching is an innovative fusion of yoga, metaphysics, mindfulness and shadow work that has taught many families, from moms to be, to kids, to adults of all ages and limitations, and to celebrities who want to incorporate yoga as part of their lifestyle. She loves to facilitate privates and group workshops. For more information about her work, please visit: https://yogabycecilia.wixsite.com/yogalifestyle