Ayurveda encourages us to live in harmony with ourselves and our environment, providing a framework of guidelines for achieving lasting peace and joy. Through the natural rhythms found all around us – day/night cycles, moon phases or seasonal shifts – it’s important that we adopt similar habits into our own lives; especially when considering that living life ‘at pace’ can easily cause imbalances within the body which result in mental and physical distress. Fortunately there are simple steps we can take daily such as following an individualized dietary plan, practicing truthfulness & incorporating appropriate rituals throughout each season to bring back balance.
Let’s start cultivating these beneficial routines today!
Take your seat on a chair. Close your eyes and allow your attention to rest on your experience of your body in the chair.
Notice the areas of contact between your body and the chair. Notice the support the chair is offering to you right now. Become aware that the chair is supporting your body right now by carrying most of your physical weight.
Allow this to happen. Allow a comfortable sense of heaviness to spread through your body, supported and carried by the chair. Notice the rise and fall of your breath as you inhale and exhale. Notice any tension you are holding within your body, the neck, shoulders, down the arms, the weight of the head. Notice any tension in your back down the spine, into your buttocks, legs, ankles and feet. Notice any tension in your belly or chest.
Each time you notice any tightness or difficulty in these different parts of your body allow it to drain into your chair, be absorbed by your chair. Just rest in this experience of being supported by the chair for a few minutes.
Whenever you are feeling anxious, unsupported or lonely, return to this practice which helps to build a nourishing reciprocal role such as caring or supporting in relation to being cared for or supported.
You are safe. You are supported. You are cared for. You are loved.
This is an exercise for you to use to calm yourself in times of stress and upset. It is ideal for bringing you back to ‘the moment’ and pushing your concerns and worries away.
Remove your shoes. Stand with your bare feet firmly on the ground, legs slightly apart, and allow your feet to really feel the support of the earth underneath you.
Take a few moments to find a relaxed posture – you may find that gently swaying around your hips helps you to settle into a relaxed upright posture. Make sure that your head is resting in a relaxed way upon your shoulders, just move the head around the shoulders slowly to find a relaxed position. Allow your back to relax. Allow your in-breath and out-breath to fill your chest and abdominal area. Rest your gaze at about 45 degrees or just ahead.
Now place your attention firstly on your feet, and then on the earth beneath your feet. Just feel the earth. Imagine that your feet have invisible roots pushing down into the earth. Push these roots as far as you can go.
Imagine now that your roots are contacting the fresh green energy of the earth. Allow this fresh energy to rise up through the roots into your feet. Now allow the earth energy up through your feet into your legs, up into your pelvis and abdomen. And then allow the earth energy to flow through your chest, heart and neck and shoulder area.
You are now grounded and ready to begin your meditation exercises.