Holiday stress! Here it is, another December. The busy, bustling winter season of giving…and giving…and giving. Not to ourselves of course because that is so selfish! Right? Wrong!
You are stressed to the max. Family coming into town, making sure paths are not crossing, or maybe they are. Have you gotten all of your holiday shopping done? Got all the food to prep? Uh oh…maybe you’re reading this thinking, “I forgot to get the ham”.
The only other thing to add in to this kerfunkle is if you have older children… and it’s the dreaded “WINTER BREAK”. That basically means a month long of having to see your precious, sweet child for more than you would care to admit that you want to (oh come on we’ve been there).
You stop going to your yoga class, you start to feel stressed because you need to get everything done, then you start binge eating all the “Skinny Pop” popcorn in the cupboard and probably downing your 6 month old’s gross melt in your mouth snack. By the time you have realized the damage you’ve done, you might be raising your voice at your spouse and have gained 10 pounds.
So how do we stop this? Well if you have family or friends in town you certainly can bring them into a class for free and use the code: givingyoga. But if you haven’t had the time to make it in, here are 3 things we want you to try to reduce your holiday stress!
Take simple seat. Close your eyes, lengthen your spine and simply stop. Stop worrying, thinking, guessing. Just live in the moment for 5 minutes. You can have a 5 minute peaceful song in the back ground or simply set a timer.
Upon finishing your meditation, we ask you to move into Nadi Shodhanam. This alternate nostril breathing will help to balance and restore your energy channels. To practice remain in simple seat with your spine erect. Start to flutter the eyes closed. The left hand on the left knee with palm facing up. Bring your left thumb into the left ring and pink finger for mudra. Your index and middle finger are straight and touching. With your right hand bring your index and middle finger folded into the palm. Your thumb, ring and pinky finger are erect. Let each exhalation and inhalation be the same length—smooth, slow, and relaxed. Do not force the breath or allow it to be sporadic. Let each breath flow without pause. Gradually increase the length of your breath.
Bring the right hand up to the nose making sure to hold the 2 fingers into the palm so that you can use the thumb to close the right nostril, and the ring finger to close the left nostril. Be sure that you are not bending over to bring the head down to your hand. And remember, be gentle. Simply rest the thumb against the right side of the nostril; this does not require more than a light touch. Inhale through the left close both nostrils, retain the breath for a moment and exhale through the right nostril closing the left. With the left nostril closed, inhale through the right, close both nostrils, retain the breath for a moment keeping the right nostril closed, exhale through the left. Repeat 20-50 times.
Stress Relief Yoga Flow:
I’ve put together a simple flow for you take.
Take simple seat.
Set your intention with eyes closed to deeply breathe and move with grace. Remember inhale to bring relaxation, exhale to release tension. Remember this for your entire practice.
Inhale deeply, exhale to child’s pose (5 breaths)
Inhale to hands an knees
Inhale to cow, exhale to cat (Repeat 4 x)
Inhale neutral spine, exhale to puppy pose (5 breaths)
Inhale, exhale to dolphin pose (5 breaths)
Inhale, exhale to down dog (5 breaths)
Inhale, walk to the front of your mat, exhale deep forward fold (3 breaths)
Inhale arms all the way up, palms together to heart center
Take tree pose on your right side (5 breaths)
Going to Eagle pose (5 breaths)
Step back with the right leg for Triangle pose (5 breaths)
Inhale step to the front of your mat, exhale deep forward fold (3 breaths)
Repeat the sequence from tree pose: 2 times on the left and 2 times on the right
Yogi Squat to a seated position.
Rolling to the left side and then onto the back
Inhale up to bridge pose (5 breaths). Repeat 4 times
Gentle twist (knees to the right upper body to the left, repeat opp. side)
Legs up the wall (25 breaths)
Savasana (aka why we do yoga) (12 minutes)
Coming out of your Savasana set the intention for the rest of your day to be stress free.
Happy Holidays from all of us at Nature’s Whisper.