Invigorate Your Senses
Aromatherapy is a powerful tool that can calm or energize your senses. There are so many ways you can incorporate the benefits of aromatherapy into your home: candles, essential oils in a bath or shower, flowers and fresh fruit, and even the aromas wafting from your kitchen. One of my favorite ways to fill my home with warmth and energy is to simmer a pot of water on my stove and fill it with orange peel and cinnamon sticks. The orange peel energizes while the cinnamon warms and soothes. Try this at home and watch your mood shift!
Winter has a way of gently reminding, and sometimes demanding, a different pace through life. Slow, all things slow. Which is counterintuitive for most in this fast-paced culture where more is better, and faster, and is far superior.
Meditation is my therapy. I’ve had a consistent meditation practice for the past three years and explored various styles of meditation for years prior to that. Like most people I started meditating as a result of all of the wonderful things I’d heard about how transformative it is to daily life, how easy it is to fit into any schedule, and how essential it is to our overall well-being and peace of mind.
“There is a story we tell ourselves everyday about who we are and what we can and can’t do…remember you wrote that story and you can edit it anytime…” -Joshua Scott Onysko
In a recent study conducted by the Center for Investigating Healthy Minds, University of Wisconsin demonstrated that a short program of brain training can produce positive effects in both adapting to stress and improving immune functions. Even months after a brain training regimen has been completed, there is a noticeable positive impact on how the brain handles negative stimulus and how the body produces antibodies.
Our lives are constantly changing with ebbs and flows of happiness sadness, anger, confusion, and elation. Sometimes it can all seem too overwhelming to handle, so how do we find contentment and stay our course when our lives are full of chaos?
The Yamas and Niyamas are the 10 ethical guidelines behind the practice of yoga. They encompass non-violence, truth, non-stealing, non-excess, non-possessiveness, purity, contentment, self-discipline, self-study, and surrender.
Lately, I’ve been thinking about Asteya, the yama of non-stealing. In day-to-day life, we think of this as not stealing material possessions from stores or other people, however, there are many ways to steal and they don’t all encompass material goods.
You haven’t practiced yoga in a month. Your meditation practice has become sporadic at best. And that vegan diet you were going to maintain all summer? That lasted two days before you dove into that pint of Rocky Road.
Summer is a time for relaxation and fun with more open schedules, warmer weather, outdoor activities and vacations. However, there can also be a sense of pressure and stress in trying to meet our expectations of a laid-back season.
Just the other day, I looked at my calendar and felt overwhelmed by all of the activities on it. Delving deeper, I realized that I needed to create some space to simply be: read a book, go deeper into my meditation practice, savor the smell of a peach as I cut into it or the smell of flowers while sitting in my yard.
Taking the time to be present in the moment is a beautiful practice in its own right, and yoga and meditation are two ways achieve that goal by creating a space within, bringing your attention inward and turning your thoughts away from distractions.