Guest Blog by Yogi Shambunata
Are you in a crisis? Are you feeling weak, angry and overwhelmed? What do you do when the last thing you feel compelled to be is proactive? Here is a quick list of the simple activities that anyone can do to change their mindset fast.
1) Wash your feet. The emotional shift out of loathsomeness that occurs with this simple action can be miraculous. Start by washing with warm water for it is most relaxing but at a later date experiment with varying temperatures. Cold water can be awakening if you are in the downward pull of lethargy.
2) Perform Child’s Pose. The Child’s Pose, according to Paramahamsa Satyananda, is the most effective yogic posture for releasing anger fast. Within a few minutes you can feel a break in the relentless fire that drives most crisis. Take special note to feel the release of your reactions as reflected in the slowing and deepening of your breath. (Instructions for Child’s Pose are included in the video at the end of this blog.)
3) Wrap your roots. If you are experiencing fear, put on some long underwear and socks. Keeping your legs and feet warm is like keeping your roots grounded in the earth. If our lower extremities grow cold while in the midst of a crises we are apt to produce more thoughts of a worried nature. Even a few degrees more warmth given to the lower half of your body can provide a surprising amount of relief to the confusion, and panic that accompanies most difficulties. (Note- For some, more heat may exacerbate an overheated mind.)
4) Plug your ears and hum like a bee. In yoga this action is called Bhramari Pranayama. More effective then sticking your head in the sand, this activity provides you with the “moment out of time” that is so wanted when we are overwhelmed and lossing control. It is said that the pure heart has the sound of a thousand bees buzzing. Once enveloped in this space we have access to our breakthrough potential and intuitive knowledge that waits just beyond our anxiety. (Instructions for Bhramari Pranayama are included in the video at the end of this blog.)
5) Breath like Darth Vader. ‘Use the throat Luke. Let it guide your prana.’ Breathing lower in the throat by contracting the glottis (wikipedia.org/wiki/Glottis) manually lowers blood pressure whilst warming the breath. Ujjayi breathing, as it is called in yoga, produces in Satyananda’s words “a profoundly relaxing effect at the psychic level.” Ujjayi literally means “the breath that gives us freedom from bondage.” Sit and watch yourself breath in this fashion for some minutes and you will see for yourself. The power that your stress is throwing away will be drawn back into your self, where you can utilize it to move forward with truthful confidence.
When dealing with a crisis, we should survey the foundational actions of the previous days. Have we slept, eaten enough fats and proteins, shared company with loved ones or spent time in nature enough to maintain our homeostasis? Most distress and strife, though fertile ground for lofty theorizing, is the effect of an imbalance in our personal daily activities.
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Next workshop March 9, 2014 in Toronto, ON