One of the most important things I have done for myself over the last few years is sticking to a self-practice regime. Amidst all of the chaos that seems to begin the moment I leave my house, or some days the moment I look at my phone, starting my day with some quiet time has made all the difference in how I deal with and process stress both physically and mentally. The good news is you don’t need to know anything really about Yoga or meditation to begin, just a desire for some quiet space in your head and to feel more connected to self.
The first chakra, or root chakra is aligned to a sense of grounding. It is governed by the element earth and a general feeling of safety in the world. When we feel safe in our homes, relationships, jobs and our own bodies we are better able to explore the beauty life has to offer. To explore our creative and emotional bodies, or the elements of our second chakra. But first, we must start with the base.
Here are some helpful tips to help you find a daily grounded practice:
- Turn the lights down low, light a candle, or make a cup of herbal tea. Set the atmosphere to one that is quiet, relaxing a cozy. A place you want to spend time in, that can become your special space.
- Put your phone down and turn off your ringer. Now as I say this, there are some great meditation apps that can work as timers, or you might prefer to play some relaxing music. However, for this time you’ve set aside for yourself – be present with yourself. Resist checking emails or texts.
- Choose a few yoga poses or stretches to start you off and then see what happens from there. You might find a few more spots that you want to stretch out, you might find you simply want to lie down or sit in stillness. My practice always begins with side stretches, a forward fold to downward dog. From there, every day is a little different.
- If you struggle with quieting your mind, try listening to some quiet music like nature sounds or drumming. Other alternatives are guided meditations from YouTube.
- Take a walk outside. If the weather is nice enough, take off your shoes and walk barefoot in the grass. It’s quite amazing how grounding it feels to connect bare feet back to the earth.
The above can be done at any point of the day that suits you best, hopefully finding a similar time each day so you begin to crave this space for yourself. The longer the time you can afford, the better the results. However even 5 minutes is better than nothing at all.
Written by Lisa Greenbaum E-RYT 500, C-IAYT, YACEP