We want to start making a calendar each month to help keep us on track with our goals. There are little goals and challenges sprinkled through the month, as well as space for you to add our (and your!) own. Let us know what you think! Do you use a goal calendar?
For many, the practice of yoga is a restorative, calm and peaceful practice. While that is generally true for me as well this is what yoga in my house often looks like:
I work full time outside of my home and I often don’t get much alone time when I am home. I originally intended to do yoga when Olivia was asleep. That way ensuring that my workout would be relaxing as opposed to this:
Olivia is at the age where she imitates just about everything that I do (my road rage language will come back to haunt me I am sure). She loves to talk on my phone, she tries to brush her own hair and wants to eat all her food using the “grown-up” silverware.
I am trying to find balance in my life, I want the same for my daughter. If she sees me regularly doing yoga and meditating she will begin to understand that these are things that you just do-the same as brushing your teeth and getting dressed. I want her to imitate this practice and grow up benefiting from the emotional and physical control that yoga teaches you. So though it can put a cramp in my style sometimes it is worth it for these moments:
I still consider myself a “novice yogi” (that is a total oxymoron). I am by no means an expert, and yoga is something that should be constantly practiced and improved upon. It’s a lifestyle, and one that I want to try to adopt, rather than just “doing yoga”. This month is a refresh and restart on my yoga and goals, to hopefully find a good middle ground, where my yoga practices becomes second nature. This will require a few things on my part, and for anyone looking to bring yoga into their everyday life. Here are 7 ways to make yoga a lifestyle, not just “a thing you do occasionally”.
Make a special place for your practice. This can be as simple as a corner in a bedroom were you roll out your mat, or a dedicated room full of yoga and meditation equipment. Wherever you practice, make sure it a clean, calm, and comfortable. See my little yoga space here, and Kristin’s here.
Find a teacher that you connect with. This can be a small local yoga studio teacher, someone at a large complex, or a youtube guru. Everyone has a different style and speed. Find someone that works with you and your lifestyle, and you are more likely to stick with it.
Integrate meditation into yoga practice. This might not seem like it is everyones cup of tea, but meditation is an important part of wholistic yoga practice. Taking a few extra moments in shavasana, taking a “time out” for 5 minutes in the middle of a busy work day, or reciting a dedicated mantra for 10-15 minutes a day can be the key to bringing yoga inward, and feeding the soul (the soul gets hungry and needs nourishment!).
Try to do yoga every day. I know, this doesn’t seem very balanced to have to do something everyday, but doing yoga for a shorter amount of time every day is better than doing hours of yoga at a time, but not very often (in my opinion). I am a fan of short 15-20 minute yoga practices when I don’t have a lot of extra time, or even just a quick sun salutation flow on a Sunday when I usually would rest from extra activities. Consistency breeds habit.
Find a yoga friend. We all know that having a friend to support you in a goal makes things easier. You don’t have to do yoga together every day, or ever ever, but taking about it and sharing experiences can be enriching.
Keep a journal of the benefits you see from practicing. Writing down how you feel, changes in your body, changes in your mindset, etc will be motivating to keep moving forward. Find a pretty notebook, or just open up a new note in your phone. Either one works!
Take yoga off the mat, and into everyday life. What you do off the mat is just as important, if not more so, than what you do on it. Practicing mindfulness, being kind to yourself and others, forgiving, protecting your body, being happy with what you have, and finding inner strength, are all positive aspects of yoga to practice off the mat.
These are just the beginning in a of a myriad of ways to implement yoga into your life. Yoga is very personal, so get on your mat, start, and make it your own.
Yoga and Meditation are the name of the game this month. Official challenge name: “Chillin Out Maxin, Relaxin All Cool”.
This is the perfect way to begin the year; yoga and meditation work hand-in-hand to unite body, mind, and spirit. It also just feels freaking great. If we can get into good habits of daily yoga, and figure out how to implement meditation in an attainable way, then the rest of the year will undoubtedly go smoother. That’s just one of the many benefits of yoga — it centers you.
Here are a few of our favorite resources we are starting this month with. More to come as we continue to research and learn more!
YouTube–Yoga with Adriene-She is a yoga goddess, so approachable, with high quality and free videos. Try her 30 day of yoga challenges! They are a fantastic way to build your practice, and get in the habit of daily yoga.
Apps- Headspace and Smiling Mind. Both are guided meditation apps we have used and enjoyed. Again, approachable to the “every day” type person.
Did you know that many yoga studios in your community will offer one or more free classes for you to try before buying a pass, or more classes? This is a great way to find a fit before you commit.
We will write a full post of resources later this month, to let you know what we have discovered and learned. We love to hear your favorites too, so comment below and let everyone know! We want this to be a community of sharing, and learning from each other.
Happy 2018, and happy meditating! (and Yoga-ing? 😉