20 Reasons Yogis DON’T Need a New Year’s Resolution
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It’s almost that time of year again. That time when everybody sets a new year’s resolution and starts the self-improvement projects. But if you already practice yoga, and especially if you have done my Inner Critic Series , this time of year can kick up your Pleaser, Rule Maker, Pusher, and Perfectionist.
The truth is, if you already practice yoga, you don’t need to set a new year’s resolution.
Here are 20 reasons why.
#1 Balancing of Strength and Flexibility
#1 You are already experiencing the balancing effects of hatha yoga. Ha means sun and tha means moon. Ha is masculine, heating, expanding and strengthening. Tha is feminine, cooling, contracting, and flexible. We need both in our practice to create balance. Flexibility without strength leads to fragility. Strength without flexibility leads to rigidity.
#2 Stress Relief
#2 You are already getting stress relief. Yoga allows you to access your parasympathetic nervous system and restore your body’s sensitive balance. Through yoga you can bring your body back into equilibrium. True relaxation involves more than just resting, rather balancing and restoring your energy. Yoga excels in rejuvenating relaxation. Through yoga asana and pranayama (breath practice) you are already releasing tension, stress, blockages in your body and experiencing deep relaxation and restoration of your energy. Way to go!
#3 Strength Training
#3 You are already getting strength training. We practice strengthening postures in yoga and through that we experience strength in our breath that will be translated to our energetic, emotional, mental and spiritual bodies.
#4 You are already flexible in body, mind, emotions, energy and spirit. One of the main benefits of practicing yoga is flexibility. The yoga asanas allow us to become more limber in our bodies, bodies that are stiff from sitting all day at computers, on commuter trains, and flaking out on couches watching television. According to the Toa Te Ching, Whatever is flexible, and flowing will tend to grow, whereas whatever is rigid and blocked will whither and die. As yogis we stay fluid, young and supple through the practice of yoga asana.
#5 Bone Density
#5 You are building bone density. Your asanas (or yoga postures) create extra load (or weight) that creates more tension from tendons pulling on bone. The more tension, the more new bone your body will make. Yoga also as you know from our class on flexibility, has a lot of stretching, which research on bone density now shows also stimulates new bone growth.
#6 Good Circulation
#6 You are already improving your circulation. Good circulation means that blood flows to all the cells and organs of your body. Good circulation includes the flow of lymphatic fluid as well, which helps to keep your body’s immune system strong. A healthy circulatory system means increased energy, healthier organs, better digestion and improved immunity. Your overall health is dependent upon optimum function of cells which depend on proper blood supply.
#7 You already focus on your breath to improve your health. Not only does your breath reflect your mental and emotional well-being, but it can also influence your mental, emotional, energetic and spiritual being.
#8 You already have great digestion and elimination. Good digestion is about absorbing what you need and eliminating what you do not – physically, emotionally, mentally, energetically, spiritually. When your digestive system is healthy you will be able to receive nourishment from your food and people in your life. Good digestion means letting yourself be nurtured and nourished.
#9 Your yoga already balances your hormonal and endocrine system. Your endocrine system secretes hormones directly into your bloodstream. Your endocrine glands run through the central channel of your body balancing your chemical makeup. As many of you know if any of your hormones are off a bit, it can throw off your whole being physically, emotionally, and mentally.
#10 You’ve already been through many transformations because of your yoga practice, you don’t necessarily need the chance of a calendar year to mark another one. Through yoga, our bodies have been our vehicles for transformation.
#11 Nervous System
#11 Your nervous system is health. and your spinal chord. By maintaining the suppleness of your spine through yoga you are greatly assisting your central nervous system.
#12 You already have refined your energy reserves. The more you practice yoga the more you realize that it is less important to achieve exotic yoga postures and it is more important to be aware and refine your energy and energy flow. This is truly the mark of an advanced practice.
#13 You know what your body needs. You can drop into internal awareness to attune to your needs in each moment. You know how to listen, respond, and adjust to the feedback you are receiving deep from within. You have become aware of your body as a wise teacher.
#14 You set an intention every time you come to your yoga mat, not once a year! In fact, you may have a guiding sankalpa for your life already.
#15 Brain Yoga
#15 Your mind is sharp. You not only move your body, but you train your mind. Yoga is about more than the asanas, we do brain yoga too!
#16 Discipline is not something you just whip out in January for a few days. You come to your mat every day, probably at the same time. You’ve got this, you’ve had this, you just keep going.
#17 In fact you are living a pretty balanced life. You not only balance in your yoga poses, but you are feeling pretty balanced off your mat as well.
#18 There’s no need for harsh cleanses or diets, because you are a yogi. You are listening to your own body and nourishing it on a deep level each and every day.
#19 Loving Kindness
#19 And when you fall off the wagon, you treat yourself with loving kindness and acceptance and come back to the mat the next day with tenderness and ease.
#20 Advanced Yoga
#20 Yes, you know what it is to be an advanced yogi, to listen inwardly on a deep level and you don’t need any outward focused extreme new year’s resolution to keep you on track. Your yoga practice is about listening to your own body, thoughts, emotions, energy and spirit, not about external goals. You already got this!
Our membership community is going to be focusing on sustaining our fabulous yoga practices all through January 2016 … we don’t need to create anything new. Come and join our great community and be supported in your wonderful practice.