How to keep a clear head and calm spirit in the hours following your favorite yoga class:
Your 6:30 a.m. yoga class leaves you feeling rested, focused and grounded for the day ahead. Then your first set of work emails pour in, you get caught in commuter traffic and spill coffee on the front of your pressed suit.
Many of us enjoy yoga because it begs a certain lifestyle of peace through the chaos of our regular days. And while we may be able to strike a confident Warrior Pose in the quiet moments before the swell of our responsibilities come into play, those attitudes can be lost in moments of high stress and unexpected pressure if we’re not careful to keep a healthy mindset in check.
Here are a few ways to combat the daily catch-you-off-guard surprises for an “all-day namaste.”
According to an article from Johns Hopkin’s School of Education, anxiety has the power to invoke the “fight-or-flight” reactions in our bodies. This can result in physiological responses such as muscle tension, increased blood pressure and shortness of breath.
Taking a moment to focus on taking full, expansive breaths can help clear your mind and realign your focus.
2. Take a Walk
According to this New York Times article – which features a study conducted by the Scandinavian Journal of Medicine and Science in Sports – taking a few minutes to walk away from your desk can work wonders in balancing your mood and stress levels.
The article claims that those who focus on moving throughout the day, “tend to be more calm, alert and happy than people who are inactive.” So get up and get moving!
3. Strike Your Favorite Pose
Sun Salutations aren’t just for the yoga studio: take a few minutes throughout the day to adjust your body to a place of centered strength. If you work in an office, check out this Health.com article for poses to try at your desk.
Take time to reflect on the aspects of your life that you’re truly thankful for every day. Standing in the middle of dirty dishes and a pile of laundry? Repeat to yourself of what you appreciate about your home.
In the midst of a pressing work deadline? Remind yourself what you love about your career, or reflect on how far you’ve come in your career and the goals you’re making progress toward.
Meditating on the positive aspects of your day will help you retain the proper perspective to overcome daily hurdles.
5. Make Additional Healthy Choices
Committing to the art and spiritual practice of yoga holds many health benefits for those who dedicate time to it regularly. However, following up your classes with a healthy diet, generous heart, getting an adequate amount of rest and drinking plenty of water can have a tremendous impact on your daily well-being.
Yoga is more than a class. It’s a lifestyle. And the more focused intention you give to your overall health in any waking moment, the more benefits you’ll nurture in your mind, body and spirit.