But I Can't Do It Alone: The Power of Home Practice
Too many times my students admit to me that the only time they practice yoga is during our classes. Ho-hum boring! Don’t you get tired of hearing my voice drone on and on about the position of your standing leg? Don’t you long to explore the freedom of just you & your mat with no nagging teacher? Oh, I see, without the structure provided by a class, you feel a little lost and unsure of what to do. Well, dear friend, have no fear, Gita is here!
Here are my top tips for building a small but ever-so-mighty home practice. You can do it!
Space: Really, my friend, you don’t need a lot of space to create a small but mighty shift. Clear out just a corner of a room big enough so you have space to roll out your mat and wiggle side-to-side. Stick a flower in a vase, maybe a candle if that’s your thing and viola! instant access to your own mini-oasis! Keep this space clean and free of clutter-honor it and honor yourself! (insert picture of meditative quality/altar)
Ritual: Set a time for practice and put it in your calendar just as you would your kid’s doctor appointment or that big meeting for work. Keep it at a time and day that will be consistently easy for you to maintain. Most of my grounded and easeful students report that a morning practice is easy to maintain. It fills your body with fresh energy and a balanced perspective before the momentum of the day pulls you away from your practice.
Media: A plethora of media abounds-just aching to be used! My favorite free resource is Yoga Journal online-oh my do they have hours and hours of free streaming videos! They are grouped and searchable by time, level, and teacher. I run to these videos whenever I need a little guidance!
Buddy Up: Make yourself accountable for your practice. Don’t we all behave just a little bit better if we know someone we admire is watching? Tell a trusted friend or coworker, tweet about it, Facebook your intention, ask a family member to call and remind you to practice, or have a pal text you to check in. You’ll be much more likely to establish your new practice if you know a trusted friend is watching!
Relax! Don’t forget the yoga nidra, or deep relaxation, at the end of your practice. It’s crucial to give your body and mind a few minutes to process and absorb your new practice. If you’re in the mood for a full 15 minutes of bliss, check out <my recording>. If you’re short on time, set a timer for 3 minutes, find a comfy reclining position, and take your awareness head-to-toe as you soften and relax your bod! Relax into stillness….ahhhhhhh!