Yoga and meditation are both incredible ways to keep your mind and body happy and healthy. The two practices tend to go hand in hand, and thankfully you don't need to be a yogi or meditation guru to participate.
There are so many benefits of practicing yoga and meditation. If you type either of the words into google you'll be overwhelmed with the positive response from websites, videos, and articles that claim these two practices are key to living mentally and physically stress-free. Off the top of my head, I can tell you right now that yoga and meditation will help you with mental clarity, better sleep, flexibility, stress, and digestion, to name a few.
If you're keen to try yoga or meditation then keep reading, this blog post contains a few tips that are perfect for you. Adding something new to your daily schedule may seem impossible and a little daunting especially if you're a busy working guy or gal but just a few minutes of stretching and meditation each morning will kick-start your day in the right direction.
Yoga has been around for thousands of years, in fact, we're unsure where or when it originated, but it must be good if so many people partake in this ancient practice on a day to day basis. One of the great things about yoga is that it doesn’t require expensive equipment or a gym membership. Yoga can be practiced almost anywhere! So here are a few great ways to get you started.
#1 Baddha Konasana Pose / Bound angle pose
This is an awesome start to yoga and can be done on your bed first thing in the morning. This pose helps to stretch our the muscles and open the hips, things that we often forget about.
Start by sitting upright with your back straight and bringing the bottoms of your feet together. Breathe slowly and place your hands around your toes. It’s good to close your eyes and feel how the muscle react to this pose. Stay here for at least one minute.
#2 Walking Meditation Outdoors
Taking a walk outside is actually a form of meditation. People are connected to nature in so many ways and clearing your head by taking a walk outside will expose you to so many elements. Walking mediation is obviously quite different to normal mediation which is done when sitting or lying down. But this type of practice is much easier to start with as its easier to focus on what the body is doing when it's actually moving. It also won't take up too much time in your life. Walking to get a coffee or even from the car to the supermarket is the perfect opportunity to clear your mind for a minute’s walking meditation.
#3 Deep breathing
Two main things are involved in meditation, finding a focal point and letting go of any thoughts or emotions that arise. Breathing deeply is the perfect way to get into this state. It is also associated with lots of positive benefits such as stress relief and relaxation of the body and mind.
Start by finding a comfortable place away from others and closing your eyes. This will help you from getting distracted. Bring your attention to your belly and begin extending the length of your inhale and your exhale. When you breathe in feel your ribcage expand as the breathe comes into your body. When you exhale slowly count to four as your feel the breathe leave your body. This is an awesome practice to let go of any emotions, imagine these thoughts and feelings leaving your body as you breathe out. You can do this for 3 to five minutes of as long as you can sit comfortably with a steady breathe. A great practice to slot into your work day to refresh your mind.
If you are interested in learning more about yoga there are lots of awesome yoga studios around with classes for a range of abilities. There are also lots of websites and youtube videos that provide classes you can do in your own home. One of my personal favourites is Gaia which contains lots of info on yoga, meditation, and holistic health, and lessons are catered to your own preferences.