Just reading those words is like an exhalation for the mind. But in a world where we find ourselves having to schedule “relaxation”, it often takes effort to build the time into our lives along with much planning and preparation to experience that relaxation.
For the modern imagination, relaxation is an active event. Americans in the 21st-century tend to correlate relaxation to be some activity—like going to the beach or playing basketball—that isn’t connected to our work life. This constant doing demands a large energy supply to keep fueling our activities, both work and play. Resource depletion is bound to catch up with us and when it does it makes neither work nor play an enjoyable endeavor.
What if there was a way to completely revitalize yourself in about an hour’s time so you had energy to have a life after work? Imagine being able to approach the relationships in your life from a perspective of openness and calmness! What if you could do all this laying on floor?
Well, let me introduce you to yogic sleep—Yoga Nidra.
Yoga Nidra is by far one of the most rejuvenating, life altering and important practices that we offer at Jai Dee Yoga & Wellness. This ancient practice combines mind body sensory awareness, mindfulness, hypnotic imagery and apana meditation (releasing and eliminating negative energy) to bring the body and mind into a state that is beyond and more rejuvenating than sleep.
Absolutely anyone can practice Yoga Nidra, but it has immense appeal for those who struggle to let go. It also has value for those suffering from sleep deprivation, trauma , anxiety, or depression (to any degree). It’s also perfect for anyone who has been curious about the deeper states of meditation they have read about or stumbled across but have never been able to recreate.
What to expect during a Yoga Nidra practice
During Yoga Nidra, the teacher guides students to lie down comfortably. Since it is the most effortless and balanced resting position, savasana is the preferred pose. However, it is wholly acceptable and not uncommon and to have students lie down on their belly or on their side. The teacher will provide yoga props—blankets, bolsters, blocks, etc.—that will allow students to find comfort and ease in their chosen pose. Students are free to mindfully adjust their pose and/or props at any time to allow themselves to find more comfort.
Once everyone is in a comfortable, supported pose, you will be guided through a detailed practice of resolve and a journey into a deeper state of consciousness that may look like sleep but is not sleep. You may have experienced the feeling when you are half asleep, and it strangely feels as if your brain is dozing. Such a state of consciousness, between being awake and being in sleep, is a state where Yoga Nidra may bring you.
At the beginning of the instructions, you are asked to set a sankalpa—the making of a resolve to yourself or to call upon the deepest desire. Following the setting of your sankalpa, the teacher will guide you through a rotation of consciousness connecting to the physical body. Your journey will continue through guided exploration of the breath, sensory perception, and/or visualizations.
When you engage with the practice of Yoga Nidra you will essentially be in the furthest state of relaxation whilst remaining conscious and aware of your surroundings. By practicing Yoga Nidra, you encourage your body and mind to heal. Through the use of apana meditation you are encouraging the mind to let all of your worries and waking thoughts go.
Through the regular undertaking of this ancient practice, you can work to become more in tune with your truth and find balance within your thoughts. Yoga Nidra allows practitioners to power down in a way that is restorative and rejuvenating.
Join Caroline for Yoga Nidra at Jai Dee & Wellness to experience the benefits of Yoga Nidra in your life.