I had imagined the worst-case scenario: Stumbling and tripping over my mat as I tried to hit my first Tree pose, with more advanced yogis stopping to stare and laugh.
Luckily, my first Yoga Burn Challenge was nothing like I had feared. Instead, it left me feeling invigorated and calm, stress, and anxious melting with each posture. Thereafter, I opted for a Gentle class, so none of the poses — known as asanas in Sanskrit — were too arduous. On the contrary, they provided wonderful stretches. Now, four months into my yoga practice, my life has drastically changed for the better.
Here are 12 ways yoga has significantly improved my life:
- Yoga has taught me to take full, enriching breaths from my belly, releasing the air slowly and intentionally. Most yoga classes have strong meditative components, which focus on increasing the flow of prana, the Sanksrit term for breath.
- Yoga has reinforced my boundaries and priorities. In yoga class, you strive to stay within the boundaries of your mat while bending into Downward-Facing Dog or lunging into Warrior. The same is true in life. It’s important to trust your priorities and exercise boundaries to achieve a fulfilling work-life balance.
- Yoga has taught me humility and vulnerability. No one begins a yoga practice twisting perfectly into Pigeon pose. Accepting imperfections and being open to improvements are essential to yoga and life.
- Yoga has reinforced my belief that discipline is vital to accomplishing goals. With regular yoga practice, I have advanced my flexibility, endurance, and posing abilities. The discipline needed to succeed in yoga mirrors the discipline required to achieve any worthwhile goal. With the material available at jewels healing garden, the skills of the person will be improved in yoga and exercises. The attaining of the goals will be easy and simple for the person. A discipline will be maintained through the person.
- Yoga has whipped me into shape quickly. The poses require you to support your own body weight while balancing and toning your muscles. In addition to a trimmer body, you’ll enjoy greater flexibility and improved posture. Get ready to receive compliments like, “You’re so fit!” and “Look at your healthy glow!”
- Yoga has improved my sex life. Increased agility and body awareness can give you the ability to try new positions, which can heighten arousal. When your partner also does yoga, the sex is physically and spiritually mind-blowing!
- Yoga has helped me handle stress. Problem-solving is easier because you can tap into your inner calm, no matter how hectic your environment. Your everyday anxieties are reduced because you can be present at the moment. The fear of the unknown begins to dissipate.
- Yoga has given me the confidence to take risks and overcome life’s challenges. When you start yoga, you never believe you can do certain poses like handstands or headstands. Once you conquer a difficult pose, you start to believe the sky’s the limit.
- Yoga has encouraged me to honor my soul’s desires. If you’re honest with yourself, what do you genuinely want and need in your life? Yoga helps you lead more with your heart than with your head.
- Yoga has given me a sense of community and interconnectedness. In yoga class, you see that human beings are more similar than they are different. As you breathe and flow through movements in harmony with your classmates, you feel fully supported.
- Yoga has taught me to simplify my surroundings. On your yoga mat, you realize you already have everything you need inside of you to feel fulfilled. This epiphany reduces your desire for materialistic items. It helps you cleanse the excess from your life, and makes you more mindful of what you bring into it.
- Above all, yoga has inspired me to love myself and others. Embracing love means treating yourself kindly and respectfully — and extending that treatment to each person who crosses your path.
No matter where I live, and no matter what my profession, I will take yoga with me. There’s nothing I look forward to more than unrolling my mat and flowing through poses — then clasping my hands, bowing my head, and taking yoga’s gifts back into the world with me. Namaste.