Sometimes it does happen that one’s personal yoga practice can drag along like a chore. One gets on that yoga mat and does a lifeless practice just for the sake of getting it done. I’ve been there many times. Yoga, alas doesn’t work that way. One has to throw oneself into it body and soul if one wants anything out one’s practice.
So the next time all you yoga doers out there want to put that zing back into your practice, consider this:
Get into your favorite asana. My personal favorite at this point is head-stand. And sometimes I find myself struggling to stay in that position for more than a few seconds. However, I have discovered that combining emotional release with asana or gaining stability that is not merely physical can help tremendously. The practice of asana just by itself can touch us emotionally and spiritually. It can be a release, not just from the muscular stretching and nerve toning point of view, but from a deeply emotional point of view as well. The key lies in holding the posture for more than just a few seconds and relaxing every muscle thereof. From this position of deep muscular relaxation comes an even deeper feeling of mental release. When you stretch the neck and shoulders, you massage some of the spinal nerves, for example and when the spinal nerves are getting toned, they relax and their fight/flight response is minimized. So stretching, in that sense has a truly relaxing effect.
Holding the asana is important too. Now what happens typically on a dull yoga day is that you are simply unable to get into some of your favorite postures, let alone hold them for long enough to feel anything. This is where you can introduce EFT. Two things are possible. Before you actually start your yoga practice, you spend five minutes on EFT. “Even though I have no motivation or inspiration to practice, I love and accept myself without judgement.” “Even though I don’t really want to practice now even though I know its important for me to do, I love and accept myself……..” Use the reminder phrase “this lack of motivation, this lack of inspiration” and go through the entire EFT protocol for three rounds. Start you yoga practice.
Now each time you run into an asana where your body is stiff and inflexible, Repeat “even though I am stiff and inflexible and unable to get into this asana comfortably, I love my body without judgement”. Just saying this is very liberating. You can visualize every one of the EFT points being infused with white light, to replace the physical tapping. This type of visualization is very effective.
The second possibility is that you start your yoga anyway, irrespective of how you feel, but each time you get into a posture, you quickly EFT for a few seconds and feel your body relax completely as a result. You may even feel your body easing into the asana. You are supposed to relax on the mat. How often we forget this. Your body should be completely at ease in every asana. Even in headstand, or should I say especially in headstand. The more difficult the asana appears to be, the more you need to relax. When you perform the asana easily, you gain more out of it. So when I am standing on my head and start feeling the pressure on my neck, I quietly start EFT-ing. “Even though I feel the pressure on my neck and I am afraid of hurting myself, I love and accept my body without analysis” “even though I feel strange in this asana at this moment, I still choose to remain in it, loving and accepting my body through it”
Use EFT on your yoga mat as per your personal needs from time to time. Be creative in how you use it because such creativity invariably brings many more things to your awareness. You start peeling layers off especially because the asana and EFT are working in combination. You can make your practice a truly therapeutic one if you want to by combining techniques such as EFT with asana. If you are doing asana for diabetes or high blood pressure, then obviously, yoga is therapy and its effects can be augmented by simultaneously tapping on the problem….. Tap for the ailment and for the effectiveness of the asana practice on your physical problem.
Use EFT on the mat so you can release much more than just a muscle…….