wherethesunisalwayshining

sprinkling positivity

How yoga can lead us to a better understanding of ourselves

‘Yoga is the perfect opportunity to be curious about who you are.’

A great quote. Yet for beginners, this may seem a bit confusing and mind boggling..

How on earth are you supposed to find out more about yourself through practising some postures and breathing?

Ever been to a yoga class determined to quieten the mind and be in a peaceful space.. then find the person practising next to you has really loud distracting breathing? You can’t really ask them to stop breathing so you have the choice of being agitated and annoyed for the next hour or to change your perspective and just accept it and let it be.

Similarly in life.. we may expect things to go in a certain way but then outside circumstances change it, we either accept them and adjust or we end up suffering and hurting because we resist and let our emotions get the better of us.

Being on the mat allows us to be. A time to come to the present moment, bring awareness to ourselves, watch the mind and listen to the body.

Attempting to be present in the now is something we all manage to do for only a short period of time before we get distracted.. let alone a 90minute class! By watching how present or how easily distracted we are on the mat, we can then see that this may reflect how present we are in the rest of our lives, spending time with loved ones but thinking of work? Spending time in work but thinking about what to cook for dinner? If this is the case then you may be present physically but not as you, this is how you let life slip by because you’re never really there if you’re not really present.

Being on the mat brings this new found awareness into your life.

Watching the mind can prove interesting in yoga, especially when you come to postures that appear difficult. The mind might say ‘I can’t do that’ before even trying. How many times does this then also reflect in your normal life? The mind might be too busy concentrating on how much more flexible your neighbours are compared to you leaving you feeling inferior ; could this also be true that you then spend a lot of time comparing your life with other peoples?

One of my favourite reasons I enjoy practising yoga or meditating is so I can see where my mind is at. Everyone’s state of mind changes from moment to moment depending on what’s happening. I can wake some mornings and be fully present and peaceful, other times my mind will be thinking of past, future, day dreaming and distracted and that then tells me that I need to put some extra work into achieving peace for myself and doing less.

It let’s you come to know yourself in a new way, listening and allowing you to help yourself.

How much do you listen to your body? Do you find that you will attempt the full posture instead of a variation because everyone else is doing that, even though your hamstrings might be yelling for you to stop pushing yourself. Or do you find that you could push yourself further into a posture but you like to relax and play it comfortable? Again, these things can all reflect in how you go about your daily life.

So.. Let the yoga mat be your place of learning, enter with an open-mind and child like curiosity. There is no need to judge any of these things that you may discover about yourself. Observation is simply watching, don’t take it too seriously and put a judgement of it being bad or good. See it as a game and say ‘thank you for that lesson, I can now be aware if I do something similar in daily life.’

‘Yoga is the perfect opportunity to be curious about who you are’

Namaste!

 

 

 

Advertisements
Leave a comment »

Learn what Chakra imbalances you may have

Have you felt a lot of fear lately, find it difficult accepting love or cannot focus at all? Can’t find the answers as to why? Perhaps have a look and explore the Chakra system which is our main energetic system that affects our emotions, behaviours, overall mental and physical wellbeing. If you find one of these resonates with you, research on yoga postures or other things you can do to balance a certain chakra, it may help!

  • First Chakra Blocked – Root Chakra / Muladhara

    Overly fearful about security and survival, ungrounded, flighty, fearful, feeling of not belonging anywhere, weak constitution; or overly practical, lacking dreams and imagination, plodding, habitual, tied down, difficulty letting go; fear; problems with bones, feet, legs, colon, elimination, weight.

  • Second Chakra Blocked – Sacral chakra – Svadhistana

    Emotionally cold, low-energy, low libido, difficulty changing, difficulty experiencing joy, holds back; or hyper-emotional, overly sexual, overly focused on physical pleasure; guilt; problems with reproductive and urinary systems

  • Third Chakra Blocked – Navel chakra – Manipura

    Lack of confidence, difficulty manifesting desires, lack of self-esteem; or misuse of power, dominance, over-reliance on will (potentially leading to physical exhaustion); shame; problems with digestion, hypertension, fatigue, adrenals; diabetes, allergies

  • Fourth Chakra Blocked – Heart Chakra – Anahata

    4th chakra blockage is especially significant because it is in the middle, uniting the upper and lower chakras. Among other things, blockage can manifest as loneliness, lack of emotional fulfillment and difficulty accepting or giving love, lack of compassion; or as unhealthy relationships, “loving too much,” love manifesting at a low vibration, or a lack of sense of connection to the divine or to nature; unresolved sorrow; problems with heart or lungs; asthma

  • Fifth Chakra Blocked – Throat Chakra – Vishudda

    Inability to communicate ideas, problems with self-expression (expression of own truth), problems with creativity; or uncontrolled, low-value, inconsistent communication, manipulative, deceptive of self or others; problems with neck, shoulders, thyroid

  • Sixth Chakra Blocked – Third Eye – Ajna

    Lack of imagination, lack of vision, lack of concentration, blocked or clouded intuition, can’t see “big picture”; or distorted vision, delusional, distorted imagination, misuse of intuition; or overly reliant on logic and intellect; problems with vision, headaches, nightmares

  • Seventh Chakra Blocked – Crown chakra – Sahasrara

    Spacy, ungrounded, impractical, indecisive, difficulty with finishing things, no common sense, depressed, alienated, confused; or cut off from spirituality, plagued by sense of meaninglessness; or delusional, grandiose; problems with brain, cognition, mental illness.

 

 

Leave a comment »

Working 9-5 what a way to make a living…

Why is it that we buy into the 9-5 working way of living…

As 5 year olds in school we have great dreams of becoming astronauts, ballet dancers, actors and so on.. So why is it that we lose this drive, this passion to fulfill our ambitions.

Of course as we grow older our passions might change but even then we find ourselves settling for things on a much smaller scale because we no longer believe our dreams are achievable.

Growing up, we are surrounded in a society that has been set in a trap, we’re programmed with limiting beliefs that do not serve us, that ‘real’ life is hard and that dreams are just dreams.

From a young age in school we are taught that we are dumb or stupid if we don’t pass the exams they set us, even though we are all different with various IQ and emotional intelligence. Slowly our dreams floats away.. we are told we have to be realistic and not live in a fantasy land.

The truth is we are being tricked out of our lives. We leave school with a lot of fear, confusion, self-doubt and insecurities, mostly from comparison to others because we are expected all to do the same things and then compare ourselves for not being the same.

In my opinion, it’s all intentional, so that with these insecurities we can work for the system.

By working for the system I mean spending the majority of our life working to earn money, just so we can then give it back to the system by buying a big house, a nice car and the latest gadgets and materialistic things.

The marketing world makes us believe that by purchasing the latest gadgets, going on exotic holidays and owning a flash car – it will make us happy and prove our success.

We have bought into the statement that ‘Money buys happiness’. With the insecurities we have from leaving school. we have something great to prove so when we earn money, we want to buy things to prove our success, to ourselves and others. We want to own the latest gadget or newest car.. not really for ourselves but for what others will think of us.

That comes from that insecurity that was ingrained within from a young age. We constantly want more, because the marketing world will always bring new things into creation and to want to keep proving our success, we will always be buying more. We will never feel fulfilled with what we have, not whilst someone else has more than us.

And so we become slaves to the system.. spending fifty years of our lives working for money, just to spend it back on materialistic things that actually only bring us short-term happiness, so that we have to go back to working the long hours just to buy the next big thing.. a continuous cycle of dis-contentment and unfulfillement.

We are lucky to then have our health after we retire, all these things but our lives have passed us by.. Or many have a mid-life crisis from recognizing their deep unhappiness from being alive but not really living. More so, nowadays mental illnesses are on the rise within young adults from the self-doubt, fear of the future and simply feeling lost.

I ask you to question whatever your doing, question your intentions and what you really want out of your life.

Perhaps you say you want a lot of money, why? We all want to be comfortable but there is no need for greed.

Imagine if you worked your own hours, doing something you dream about and serves your passion.. that would bring you fulfillment, time spent working would be more like doing a hobby and you would have spare time to do things for yourself or your family. All you need is self-belief that you can actually create any kind of life that you want, know that any limiting beleifs that you cannot do that, are not real. Recognize the potential within yourself, within all of us.

We are the creators of our lives, its time we began to live up to it.

Follow your dreams and unleash your power

Leave a comment »

Freedom of thought, freedom from thought

You are not your thoughts. How many times have we heard this? But do we really understand it, most importantly do we understand the message it gives us.

That is that we have freedom from thought, if we are not our minds then we are free from it’s negative thinking.

My intention for this blog has always been to bring awareness to people, in hope that you become aware of your thoughts and how they create your reality.

We don’t choose what thoughts pop into our minds most of the time, but we do have a choice on how to perceive those thoughts. That choice only comes once you know and you are aware that you can differentiate yourself from the minds thinking.

For example –

Let’s say Lucy who struggles with self-esteem, wants to try for the dance team but doesn’t feel she can because her mind is in a negative spiral, it says things like ‘I’ll let the team-down, I’m not good enough, what if the others just laugh at me..I am a failure.’

Without awareness, Lucy accepts this as the truth. She thinks she is her mind, therefore her thoughts are facts.

If Lucy was to bring her awareness to this negative thinking by pausing the auto-pilot mode that she lives in, she would be able to challenge that thought and realize, its just a negative thought, it’s not the truth.

This is not true. We are not our thoughts, we do not choose them and they’re not the truth. Something negative happens in the past, we take it personally and hold on to that hurt instead of letting it go, then our minds remember and project it into the future and create our new thoughts based on the past experiences, creating more negativity in our lives.

Try body scanning, or a stillness meditation, observe what thoughts come up or what feelings and sensations that you experience in your body.. then recognize that you are the observer. You are not the thought, you are the one watching it.

‘What a liberation to realize that “the voice in my head” is not who I am. Who am I then? The one who sees that.’  – Eckhart.Tolle

Leave a comment »

Our thoughts – Foreground and Background

This week I began a mindfulness training and something the teacher said really stuck with me.

My last post was about accepting ourselves on a whole, without rejecting the uncomfortable or shameful parts. Accepting ourselves for all that arises within us, that including the negative.

Resisting or fighting negativity only focuses on it and creates more – as we know what we focus on grows.

And so, my teacher said whilst we began a meditation – notice you will have background noise, but bring your attention to whatever you want to focus on, let that be in the foreground.

So for example, we had bin lorries beeping in the background of our minds but our attention was to focus on the leg (in a body scan mediation). Therefore the leg being in the foreground of the mind.

Occasionally during meditation, our attention will wonder and the main focus will drift into the background and something else will replace in the foreground (focus).. until we become aware that we have drifted and we pull it back.

This is what struck me. Isn’t it the same with everything in life? Sometimes we are focused on the positive but the negative is just in the background and sometimes negativity will arise and become the focus, yet positivty remains in the background, it’s just waiting for us to pull it back to the foreground again to be our main focus.

Also about accepting it as a whole, accepting that our mind’s do drift from thought to thought instead of being constantly focused on the meditation.. and that’s perfectly ok.

Let’s be kind to ourselves and smile whenever the background shifts to the foreground or we lose focus. Let’s smile and accept that it happens. Lets remind ourselves, We are human and doing our best 🙂

Leave a comment »

Accepting when negativity arises within us

Complete acceptance for that of which we are.

Wouldn’t that be incredible?

I used to think after all the self-study, observation and reflecting I do, surely I accept myself for who I am now? And yes in a sense I do, I honour my thoughts and feelings and make time to really listen to myself and try putting myself first.

Boy, it takes up a lot of time and energy to do so much self work but ITS WORTH IT. I have never felt so at peace with myself and content with life, even when I have the not so good days. I have discovered who I am (Yes I know it sounds cheesy, but im sorry, its true. People feel lost and its all about going on a journey to find yourself.)

So.. I’ve discovered and continue to learn about who I am but do I have complete acceptance? The answer I discovered this week.. not quite

Through mindfulness practise I discovered feelings of stress and anxiety, aka negative feelings. My mind got annoyed that I was experiencing this negativity so I ended up fighting it, resisting that it was happening and trying to shove it back to wherever it came from. Complete non-acceptance of what I was experiencing in the present moment, not accepting that negative emotions do arise within me once in a while! So basically beating myself up in a way, saying ‘this negativity is not acceptable so get out, i don’t accept you, why are you feeling like this.’

Acceptance is about embracing yourself as a whole, all aspects of yourself, without rejecting the uncomfortable and shameful parts.

I could pretend that I am positive all the time and a negative thought never crosses my mind, but would that be me? Nope, it’d just be pretense, a false self.

We are perfectly imperfect. We have positive and negative thoughts, resistance only makes them grow, acceptance is showing yourself love and kindness. Don’t beat yourself up over a negative emotion, be aware of it and be curious as to why it has arisen and then smile and accept. Accept yourself exactly as you are.

Affirmation of the upcoming week –

* I accept myself and all which arises within me, completely in this present moment *

Leave a comment »

Finding Balance in your life

Finding balance can be difficult, especially as we have so many different areas of our lives to balance.

Creating this equal balance in our lives takes time and effort to tune in with ourselves, to listen to gut feeling and intuition, to know if we are doing too much or could push ourselves to do more.

Its about experimenting and learning about yourself. Learning to trust your body, it takes great care of you and will always let you know if something is wrong and therefore out of balance. This is why it’s so important to be present and take time daily to tune-in with yourself.

People often run around all day, busy or stressed, rushing from one place to another. They probably get symptoms of illness way before they stop and realize, by this time the body is screaming. Where as if you take time daily to listen you will notice even minor symptoms and therefore be able to prevent it getting worse.

If you find yourself constantly tired or ill with lethargic symptoms, cold, flu’s, sickness bugs or digestive problems.. consider why that is.

A few years ago I had a cold every other week. I kept complaining but once i’d get better I went back to normal and the next week I’d be sick again. I never thought about getting to the root of the problem and trying to prevent illness. It turned out I was supressing emotions, living with a unhealthy diet, not enough sleep or too much, drinking a lot of alcohol and spending no time alone. I had completely lost balance of many areas in life, this resulted in feeling lost and constantly run down and lethargic.

Balance is they key to a healthy life. Make time for yourself, only you can figure out a balance for your mind, body and soul. You have to truly listen to you as all our bodies are unique to us

Leave a comment »

balance

balanceBALANCE IS THE KEY OF LIFE

oh, and elephants are awesome.. especially elephants practising yoga in balancing postures!

Leave a comment »

Balance – the key to a happy life

Balance, equal measures, yin and yang.

Whatever way you want to perceive it.

Balance is something we strive for in our lives. We all essentially want a balanced lifestyle because balance is the key to happiness.

We need self-discipline to motivate us to do the things we don’t like, balanced with self-love and compassion to be able to listen to ourselves and not push ourselves beyond our limits.

There needs to be a balance between work and play, most of society spends most of their lives working either long hours or in high-stress jobs that once they get home, all they want to do is crash out. Finding balance in your work environment is very important so you remember to play, enjoy hobbies and relationships.

We all crave balance in our relationships, whether it’s with family, friends or spouse. We want equal effort from both parts or the relationship suffers. If one person makes more effort than the other, it is not a balanced healthy relationship.

We need a healthy balanced diet for our mental and physical health, this in some cases is a problem when one might eat only junk food, processed foods and candy, its equally as big of a problem when one only eats salads, fruit and veg. There needs a variety and balance to be healthy.

When an area of life is off- balance it can create stress, illness, suffering and unhappiness.

It is fundamental for your health and your life, how you are as a person. Finding balance isn’t always easy and it’s very easy to get knocked off balance when certain situations/events happen, but figuring out a way to get back to that equality and steady ground – that is what we should all be aiming for.

Maintaining a balanced life is the key to having a good life.

(My next post will be tips and advice on how to find/maintain balance

Leave a comment »

theres a difference between being selfish and looking after yourself

In our society we have been taught that were selfish if we do as we please, put ourselves first and make ourselves happy before someone else. This is not reality, it’s a misconception to believe that other people are responsible for our happiness, and we are responsible for theirs. We are neglecting ourselves if we say yes to something when inside were shouting no. We aren’t being kind to ourselves if we stay unhappy just because we know we’re making someone else happy. We have this inner voice and feelings as a sign to show what we want in life, it’s there for a reason so listen to it.

it would be selfish for someone to ask you not to put yourself first.

A paragraph from the secret –

Unless you fill yourself up with love first, you have nothing to give to anybody. Therefore it is imperative to tend to you first. Attend to your joy first. People are responsible for their own joy. When you tend to your joy and do what makes you feel good, you are a joy to be around and you are a shining example to every child and every person in your life. When you are feeling joy you don’t even have to think about giving. It is a natural over flow.

lets show an example –

lets say and old man asks you to do his washing for him, of course you want to help and be kind do you probably would. Then it becomes a routine and you end up doing it weekly. Then life starts to become hectic and you have many other things going on and you’re stressed trying to keep everyone happy. You feel it would be selfish to stop doing the old mans washing but inside you really don’t want to do it anymore as it’s just another thing on the long list. In truth it would be selfish for the old man to continue expecting this from you if he knew everything else you had going on.

Listen to yourself, be honest in a situation and know you have to put yourself first which sometimes means saying no to things that make others happy but yourself unhappy, sick or stressed.

Leave a comment »