Nervous energy keeping you awake… insomnia… high anxiety…
Sound familiar? Wouldn’t you like to wave them goodbye, and say hello to well-balanced harmony, and proper sleep?
Please do check out our related Yogatalk articles and practices, on recovering sleep and rest.
You might think that me being a yoga teacher makes me forever bright-eyed, bushy-tailed and superfit… Wrong!!
Quite honestly, I have a string of health issues and a history of addictive tendencies and anxiety.
I really don’t mind admitting this, because when people see me well and happy they must then conclude that yoga actually works – saving me from myself!
Joy and I teach yoga so we can share with people these simple ways to keep fit and well. This website is our way to try and cast the net a little further.
Lack of rest and sleep is a growing malady for the world; its proportions are endemic, especially it seems for the young. Too many teenage brains are in a constant device-checking default mode, even throughout the night!
So these poor frazzled brains have acquired minimal attention spans; they’ve forgotten how to rest and even how to sleep… and they’ve still got adulthood to come!
Alarmingly, we can grow accustomed to this compromised state, and regard it as normal.
Yoga’s focus on vitality and energy, which I love, makes modern science fascinating to me.
I read in the New Scientist (a kind friend gives me her old ones – I read them and pass them on to others) that our present age is being called the Anthropocene, viewed as the period when human activity is having a significant impact upon our planet, and all its occupants.
Scientific data confirms that more and more of us are living in the realm of the walking unwell. Modern neuroscience has raised awareness (useful but alarming) of the link between lack of rest and poor health.
Lack of sleep and rest really is torture.
There’s a growing interest in how the 24-hour cycle (or the circadian rhythm) affects health, and a growing consensus that we tick along to not one, but thousands of body clocks. Understanding this can improve lives.
It’s now no longer trendy to burn the candle at both ends – hurrah!
And we should now be encouraging our exhausted teens to stay up late, and to rise late… this suits them better, apparently.
Modern science is finally catching up with yoga teachings as a route to health. If we know what to do, and feel inspired to do it, we all have the power within to keep well. Yoga is joyful, not austere, and inspires us to practise.
As I said, I’m no stranger to anxiety. I was an anxious child, but I developed numerous strategies in order to cope.
Years later, in my first ever yoga class, I was reminded of some of these nuggets, and I thought, ‘So it’s called yoga – seems familiar!’ The point being that I could have avoided years of anxiety, just by remembering – or by taking up yoga sooner.
Feel free to check out ‘A resting practice’, which my childhood experiences helped to formulate.
A practice can help positive overcome negative. It can help quell that anxiety of being wide awake at 3 when the alarm is set for 6.
Once free from fretting and mental clamour, we can just savour the peace of a new dawn. We can slip back into lovely sleep, or just happily rest and listen to the blackbirds.
Ps the practical reminder ‘A resting practice’ will soon also be available as a podcast, along with others… so watch this space!!