Last January, I set the to practice Yoga daily for one year. On day 26, my back started telling me to slow down. So instead of throwing in the towel, I decided to practice Yoga three times a week and start a daily Yoga Nidra practice. Ten months later, it has changed my life. I am more focused and have made quantum leaps in shifting my mind and body. I am conscious of what foods help my body feel good, and I’ve lost weight and feel more energized. I am more present and intentional in my life, and have fine-tuned my business to harness my strengths and values to help my clients become more successful in their lives. I now believe that I am making a difference in the world living a more meaningful life.
What is Yoga Nidra? Yoga in Sanskrit means “union” and Nidra means “sleep.” Yoga Nidra is a mediation practice that is experienced in a deep state of relaxation. The mind is functioning at a deeper level, although you appear to be sleeping.
1. Yoga Nidra helps you become clearer and to feel at home with your True Nature – the place deep within you that is peaceful, stable and steady. I listen to a CD daily and in each guided session, you set an intention when you are in a deep brain state. This is how you make your intentions ‘stick.’
2. Yoga Nidra helps you recognize and dis-identify with your core negative beliefs and habits. These core negative beliefs hold us back from living a happy and full life. When we attach to an outcome in life or our thoughts argue with reality, we are suffering. When you can accept our life as it is, you can begin to let dissatisfaction, become more peaceful and come home to your True Nature.
3. Yoga Nidra allows you to witness and become aware of the internal and external phenomena of your life. The practice helps you become aware of how you argue against reality by trying to change people or life circumstances into something they aren’t. In short, it helps you witness, gain insight and take right action. During the practice, you learn to welcome rather then resist what arises in your life and consciousness.
As part of my mind/brain interview series, I interviewed Richard Miller, PhD, author of Yoga Nidra: The Meditative Path of Yoga. Richard is a psychologist and contemporary teacher of non-dualism, he is the founding president of the Integrative Restoration Institute, and co-founder of the International Association of Yoga Therapy.
If you’re interested in Yoga Nidra, please visit irest.org