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More than Just a Trend: Yoga and Stress Relief to Maximize your Inner Compass.

Yoga and stress relief is becoming new and trendy. It is becoming more and more popular and everyone from young to old; from the uncoordinated to highly trained athletes; and from dogs to horses is checking out this new wave.

Why? Because it works! And it has been working for 1000's of years.

(Photo compliments of common.wikimedia.org)

Yoga and stress relief is no fad, however. It is an age-old tool specifically designed to balance the body: mentally, physically and spiritually.

It was never really designed for stress relief. In fact, the word stress was not even invented back then. But, like everything in life, it comes down to balance. And if the mind body connection are balanced:

  • You feel better.
  • You function better.
  • You have more energy.
  • You enjoy life more.

Yoga marries together physical and mental practices to achieve peacefulness of body and mind, helping you relax and cope with stress and anxiety.

I have been a fan of yoga since my first class in university...that was, yikes, over 15 years ago! Since then I have been doing yoga in a variety of classes, on my living room floor, in parks, beside rivers and on mountaintops!

A few years ago I finally created the time to become a yoga teacher...why I choose that particular time in my life I will never know, but it was at the height of a very stressful period, and silly me was making more work for myself taking a lengthy course on top of it all.

But, only in retrospect do we see the beauty. It was the yoga and all the homework, both practical and written that kept me sane. The combination of words "Yoga and Stress Relief" became crystal clear.

At a time when stress and anxiety was at a peak, I would find myself spontaneously doing yoga breathing exercises, moving into a particular yoga posture or mudra-->, or even chanting quietly under my breath some meditation mantra.

Somehow life seemed to flow better and even though from the outside things were 'going wrong', I was ok with it all. Somehow it just didn't matter as much because I was feeling good on the inside!

What would a typical yoga class offer?

There are lots of forms of yoga, but in general, you would want to look for a class that offers the following components to make the most out of a yoga and stress relief program:

  • Postures: various yoga poses are physical movements and exercises designed to increase your strength, stamina and flexibility. The physical aspect of the practice will also work on balancing various parts of your human energy system and subtle body.

  • Breathing: understanding how your breath works and how it is the key to increasing your life force or pranic energy is essential to balance the body and initiate its healing process.

  • Relaxation: Each yoga class will end with a relaxation known as savasana, which is a time for your mind-body to integrate all the work it did throughout the class. The rest time is as important as the active time in any yoga class.

  • Meditation: the entire point of yoga is to prepare the mind for meditation and all great yoga teachers will focus a small component of the class on learning meditation.

Why should I consider trying yoga for stress relief?

There are lots of ways to create stress relief, but yoga is quite a dynamic process that will teach you to heal yourself. This is the key and the importance of combining the arts of yoga and stress relief.

We all need help from a teacher, doctor, healer or health coach from time to time, but at the end of the day, you have to understand what to do for yourself.

Yoga can teach you how to breathe, or how to be quiet, how to fall asleep, and how to cleanse your body. There are very few systems of learning out there that teach you how to be the best possible you in the world and yoga does this.

ALSO...The thing to remember is that stress, true stress is never an external factor. The kids, or work or your spouse is NEVER to blame for your stress. It is only your reaction to those external factors that create your stress. And yoga is brilliant at changing your internal environment in order to cope with that perceived stress.

Yoga brings your stress relief inside.

This is where it counts.

It recalibrates your inner compass and you are left feeling FABULOUS!

I hope to see you at a yoga class soon!

Yours In Wellness,

Dr. Lisa

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