Like most people, I can find transitions and change challenging. Saying goodbye to a loved one. Moving to a new city. Quitting a job. Even when we look forward new opportunities, that awkward in between, when we’re still adjusting and trying to find our way, can be tough. Let’s just say there’s a reason the caterpillar’s transition into beautiful butterfly happens behind closed doors.
So how can we slow down, embrace , and welcome transition? By using yoga of course!
Yoga teaches us to be present.
Often with change, we’re thinking about the way things used to be and perhaps worrying about the future implications of the change that’s about to happen. In yoga, our intention is on the right now — what do I feel in this pose, how’s my breath, what’s going on right now…we can take this off the yoga mat by checking in with our reaction to the change…how do I feel about it today? What’s happening today (right now) that I must respond to or address?
Yoga helps us to be more aware.
In beginning to settle around what might be a huge change for my life, I’ve become more aware at how I’m interacting with this potential change. At first, even the mention of it, caused my breathing to become short and my heart to beat faster. After a few months of reflection, prayer and thought, it feels better…while I’m still not rejoicing over this change, I’m more at peace with it…We’ve developed a mutual respect for each other – my big change and me — and I’m thankful that through my yoga practice I’m able to recognize the progress of this. Yoga teaches us to be aware of how our body is feeling but also aware of our thoughts…when we can observe our thoughts and really take a good look at them, we are better able recognize the ones that keep repeating bad habits or the ones that don’t do us any good….
Yoga helps us de-stress.
Change is stressful…even good change like new babies, new jobs, new relationships. A regular yoga practice helps to calm the nervous system; it lowers cortisol levels and improves/deepens our breathing. The physicality of yoga helps us get out of our head (the constant re-thinking or mulling about the change) and present in the body with our breath. Coming back to your yoga mat during a difficult period when you feel that everything is in flux can be comforting, soothing and reassuring…that some things still remain. That you are still You…one breath at a time.