Just looking around, life seems pretty normal.
Spring is slowly but surely trickling in, and the dog next door still barks at ungodly hours. Every day you still brush your teeth, put your laundry to wash, and make your favorite tea in the morning. Babies are still being born, and words are being written.
But things are different.
Aside from the visual constants, life has been turned thoroughly upside down and inside out for many of us. And, sadly, even our habitual daily tasks and the routine behaviors of nature cannot always palliate the invisible pain of anxiety, given the current situation.
So, if you’re someone whose work is suddenly on hold…
If your sales are in les toilettes, and you’re unsure how long your savings will last…
If you’re a parent, and feeling entirely terrified…
I see you.
I see you, friend.
And though I cannot realistically change your (our) situation, I wracked my brain to come up with something that could help assuage the fear and suffering that all this uncertainty is causing.
I’m a yoga teacher, after all. This I can share.
So I’ve created a special yin yoga practice, expressly to help those experiencing anxiety.
As the name suggests, it is the opposite of yang yoga, i.e. vinyasa, power, ashtanga. Smooth, gentle, slow, but still powerful, yin yoga is the antidote for our often yang-y world. Less motion, and more meditative.
In a nutshell, we hold postures much longer in yin practices, in order to go deeper, and target our connective tissues, fascia, and ligaments. And, just a warning, deep postures bring up deep emotions. You can’t hide in vinyasa after vinyasa or pose after pose like in other forms of yoga – avoiding feelings, sensations, or emotions. No. You must be present. In this way, yin yoga can be very intimate, as it’s just you and the pose.
Now, these postures will initially seem easy, but after a minute or so you’ll start to really feel the burn. When you start to feel discomfort, focus on the breath, and repeating the affirmation.
Two of the best ways that I know for dissolving anxiety are: breath work (physical), and calming our thoughts (mental). As such, I’ve chosen to add soothing affirmations to each asana (pose) to today’s practice in order to further quell any anxiety you may be feeling.
Our minds are incredibly powerful, and much of our discomfort stems from our thoughts, which in turn causes unpleasant emotions. Since we’re already in a calmer, zen state when doing yoga, affirmations are even more effective. By taking the reins of our thoughts, and being more intentional, we’re able to have a different experience, in spite of our current surroundings or circumstances.
So let’s begin. I truly hope this soothing practice offers you respite from stress and worry, and reminds you of the power you have to change your experience.
Friends, if you enjoyed this practice, please let me know in the comments below. My ever-constant goal is to uplift and inspire you to feel amazing and live well, so your feedback is golden.
As always, if you have any ideas for future videos, don’t hesitate to let me know.
In the words of Pink Martini, Hang On, Little Tomato*,
*The lyrics are so apropos. 🍅