Finally! After a full week and a half of toying with the schedule, I think I have officially figured out my morning routine. It was kind of annoying while I was determining what I wanted to include after waking up because instead of being able to run through the pattern right then and there, I had to wait an entire day to give it a go the next morning for the full effect. And just in time for school to throw it all out of wack. Of course.
One part of my routine that I really am liking a lot more than I thought I would is right after I wake up I do some yoga or light stretching. I have never really been a yoga person and anytime I go to a class I don’t get much out of it. I don’t know if it’s the people or the vibe of the classes I have gone to but it seems like organized yoga just isn’t for me. But the funny part is when I’m alone, I enjoy yoga just fine. And not only when I make it up as I go along. I have been pulling up different youtube videos for the past couple of days and using them as guides and even though someone else is instructing me, it doesn’t mess me up like classes usually do. Are any of you like this?
For me, doing yoga is the perfect way to keep my body in check and give me a little peace of mind before the full day ahead. But as I have pretty quickly discovered, and may have even discovered with the classes, is that yoga is more than just the moves. It’s about the feeling you get when doing it.
I don’t mean that the moves aren’t important. But no matter how good a session is logistically, if the feeling of the session isn’t right, you won’t get a lot from it. If it’s too busy, too bright, too messy or all of the above, you won’t be able to get the same layer of zen that you will if the set up is right. I, for one, can’t do it in the dark. I need some lights on or I am too creeped out. Now what the perfect set up is all depends on your personal preferences. It may take several trial and errors to finally get there, like me. But when you do, you will know instantly and it will be well worth it.
WHAT IS YOUR GOAL?
I think the number one thing people forget when they are trying to do yoga, whether picking a class or picking a video, is to think of what they want to get out of the session. Do you want to get stronger? More flexible? Relax? Whatever it is, it is important to acknowledge it prior to the beginning because this will allow you to get into the rhythm and find what exactly you need to make the perfect session a lot quicker than if you don’t.
And no matter your goal, it will not come in one session. If you are sporadic with your practice, just like anything, it will take a lot longer to improve. Even if your goal is to relax, you may relax slightly the first time you do it, but the more often and regular you make your schedule, the more you will get from it.
Do you do a little yoga mid day to keep you going? A quick stretch before you go to bed? Or do you do your yoga first thing in the morning to wake you up like I do?
If you have a set time every day that you will go off to your yoga mat for thirty minutes, your body will begin to adapt to this pattern and start getting you in the mindset for whatever your goal is before you even get on the mat.
Along with having a specific schedule for your yoga, having a specific place is just as important. Although every now and again I think it’s helpful to move around and switch up the space you work in, having a designated yoga space has helped me so much to create the correct vibe that I needed when doing yoga.
If you have this space already set up for yourself not only will it seem like less of an effort to do your daily yoga but it will have the same effect as walking into a studio. When you enter the space, your mind will immediately enter yoga mode and allow for you to get into your correct head space a lot quicker.
This, by no means, means that you need to have your mat out consistently. That just isn’t reasonable. You can roll it up, tuck it away, completely remove it from the room if you need to when you are done. What you do need to do is keep the space consistent with what it includes once that mat is rolled out.
Himalayan Salt Lamps
Anything that will give you a feeling of calm and relaxation when you come near it. Not only will this help with the energy of the space but also to separate this one area from the rest of your house and feel more sacred.
That being said, if you need to drop into a downward dog in the middle of cooking dinner, do it. Like I said before, although it is beneficial to have this space, it is okay to differ from it.
PICK YOUR PACE
This is definitely one of the least strict of these three. Picking your pace does not have to be a stagnant thing that you do. If you decide that you like a slower pace session, you do not only have to do slow pace sessions.
Before I ever even step on the mat, I think back to my goals. What do I want to get out of it? But not only that, I also think about how my body and mind are doing at that moment. If I am buzzing with energy, I will move through new moves to try them all out. If my mind is a mess, I will do simpler moves but really focus on sinking into them. It all depends on how I am feeling at that specific moment. Any pace you choose will affect the energy and feeling of your space just as much as the space itself.
But picking your pace, just like picking your goals and even your space, does not have to be a chore. It is about you. What you need. What will be best for you. This is a moment for you to practice self-care and truly take some time to figure out how you can listen to yourself and take care of your self to the best of your abilities.