Yoga Nidra is the journey through the landscape between sleep and wakefulness, a practice in yoga that literally translates into 'yogic sleep'.
In this meditative space we are able to move towards our highest Self and recognize we are more than just our thoughts, more than just the things we tell ourselves. Here we can feel all of these thoughts fall away so we can just simply melt into a state of being.
How does this work?
Set aside 30 minutes for this practice, setting yourself up in a quiet, distraction free space as best you can. Yoga Nidra can be done lying on your back, like Savasana pose, using props and/or pillows to get cozy. Others like to lie on their side. If lying on the floor doesn't feel good to you, try sitting comfortably in a chair. Remember that relaxation can cool the body pretty quickly, so covering yourself with blankets and/or having some nearby can be nice.
Why is Self-Compassion Important?
When we notice a friend or family member going through a hard time, or when they make a mistake, or when they don't feel good enough, we are quick to offer a compassionate hand. Most of us though, find it hard to offer ourselves that same compassion when we are going through similar things.
Self-compassion is the practice of being that friend to ourselves. It is the practice of observing our inner self-talk, of slowing down and deciding which thoughts are helping, and which thoughts are further harming us.
This doesn't mean that to be self-compassionate we can only think positive thoughts. This is not a 'good vibes only' space. Instead, we become better at allowing for all thoughts and emotions while seeing them with a more compassionate lens. It's about knowing we are more than just the things we tell ourselves, and that we are always worthy of the love and kindness we give others.
If you think of your thoughts as little seeds, self-compassion is asking you to decide which seeds you would like to plant, which seed you would like to water and see grow. Give it a try, see how practicing self-compassion changes how you see yourself over the next few weeks. And please don't try to be perfect, allow yourself to mess up!
Here is a good rule of 'green' thumb, if you wouldn't say it to your best friend don't water that seed!