How to Take Your Post-Yoga Bliss Through the Rest of the Day

If you’ve been to a yoga class, you have probably found yourself feeling incredibly calm at the end of the class. Still and solid like a mountain or light as a cloud. You could stay there forever and ever, lying in savasana, letting your body and mind relax. But then you have to get back to the real world. Bye-bye class, hello again stress.

But the stress-relief you get from a yoga class can travel forward into the rest of your day, and over time, it does. As you continue doing yoga, you’ll start noticing that the peace you feel is no longer fleeting. It gradually becomes a part of who you are and you find yourself less perturbed by situations around you. Initially though, you might find yourself caught up in your regular stress and thoughts pretty soon after the end of the class.

So how do we take the stillness you feel at the end of the class to the rest of the day?

First, let’s make it clear that yoga is not just physical exercise. It is a way of training the mind. And one part of that training is learning to manage stress levels. Here is a list of ways you can take the benefits of your yoga class beyond the class.

When in class, work on improving awareness. This could be awareness of breath, it could be awareness of physical sensations. As you do the postures (asanas) or breathwork (pranayama), try to maintain a gentle awareness of your body and breath. As you progress, you could also move on to awareness of emotions and thoughts without getting caught up in them. This awareness, when carried over into your daily life, can do wonders for helping you handle stressful situations. When you are aware of the root of your problem, whatever it is, you can address it effectively.

Get familiar with observing the pattern of your breath. When your mind goes out of whack, so does your breath. As you get used to observing the pattern of your breath, you can slowly start doing it outside of class too, till a point where you remember to check in with your breath when mentally distressed. If you notice your breath is choppy or faster than usual, you can consciously slow it down and calm your mind down.

When something in class feels good, try it outside of class on your own. Did you feel really good while doing that backbend? Did your mind relax while doing that particular pranayama? Keep track of it, and try it on your own again. This serves two purposes, the first is giving you that same feeling, and the second is you learning to notice your desires. You learn to observe what you like and what you don’t. This feeds back to the awareness we talked about earlier. Be careful about doing things without the supervision of a teacher if you’re a beginner.

Set an intention. At the beginning of the class and at the end (in savasana, the final resting posture), take a moment to set an intention to take that feeling of stillness with you through the day. It serves as a reminder.

Take 5-10 deep breaths a few times a day. Whenever you remember.

Above all, know that you can carry over that sense of calm into the rest of your life. Know that stress can be managed, and that being in stressful situations doesn’t mean you must be stressed. Know that the natural state of your mind is ease, not worry. Knowing this itself might make it easier for you to access it when you need to.


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