As I begin this piece I want to make it clear that everyone is challenged from time to time with keeping up a personal practice. Even your favourite zen yoga teachers! Life gets in the way, our priorities can change very quickly surrounding our family or jobs or winter, or summer for that matter. However, when we are on track with our own wellness practice we are more focused on real priorities, we make better decisions, we feel connected to our self.
A dedicated wellness practice should follow all elements of wellness from mind to body to spirit. Here are my tips for finding and staying with our practice:
- Make space.Find a space in your home that is dedicated and always ready for your practice. A mat that stays rolled out cushions, candles and lighter ready to go. Your books, journal or essential oils, whatever it is you need. Your space can be as small as a meditation cushion takes up. Practice saucha (cleanliness) and keep your refrigerator and cupboards organized so you can easily find your healthy snacks or prepare meals. If you find things get cluttered again quickly no problem, make space in your schedule to reorganize. Repeat as often as needed.
- Make time.No matter what you think, you have time to make anything happen in your life. It’s up to you alone to set your priorities. In my experience when I think I don’t have time for me it’s because I’m losing time lost in my thoughts, grabbing snacks for a quick energy fix over long term benefits. If you are still unsure please go back and read the first paragraph. Until you experience the effects of a steady wellness practice you will continue to doubt. I know this because that was me! Set a specific time in your day dedicated to your practice and stick to it everyday. If that time stops working, set a different time and keep going. Set a reminder alarm in your phone, book off in your calendar.
- What’s your love list?If you had time (see #2) what are all things you love to do just for you? Be specific. Let your wellness practice start there. Make sure you include at least one thing every day. You will quickly find your stress levels change as you look forward to this special part of your day.
- Include meditation.If you can’t sit still for longer than a minute, trying to meditate for 30 is only going to make you feel bad. Start with a minute, than try to 2, 3, 4, I think you get the idea. Try different forms of meditation until you find what works. If that stops working try something else. Walking meditations (even in winter) can be so peaceful, if you live close to nature even better but not necessary. Seated meditations can be done in silence or to music. Choose what will help you stay focused.
Hope this helps a little. Special thanks to Drew for inspiring me to write this article, as I stated earlier we can all use some help from time to time to get back to our own wellness practice. Happy to report this has been a cathartic experience as one of my top “love list” items is sitting down to write. xo