Now that you’ve spent the week practicing 10-15 minutes of resting, how about trying a 23-minute guided relaxation called Yoga Nidra or Yogic Sleep? After you can find 23-minutes you will want to venture on to 45-55 minutes of rest a week!
Most of us can’t remember what it is like to feel truly relaxed in both our minds and our bodies. Rest can help with the rediscovery and feeling of relaxation. We can rest for 10-15 minutes a day in Shavasna (corpse pose), we can practice restorative yoga but one of the best practices for rest and healing is yoga nidra.
The practice of yoga nidra is part of a healthy yogic lifestyle. We can’t always be doing just asana or meditation or pranayama. Like everything else in life we need to cultivate balance in our yoga practice.
The discipline of yoga nidra, like yoga, dates back to the Mandukya Upanishad which was written between 800 and 500 BCE. “In Yoga Nidra, you leave the Waking state, go through the Dreaming state, and into the Deep Sleep state, yet remain fully awake.” – Mandukya Upanishad.
According to Swami Satyananda Saraswati, yoga nidra means the “sleep of the yogis”. However, the goal of yoga nidra is to stay awake and alert. I will share however, that many people fall asleep in yoga nidra because we are a sleep deprived society. If that happens to you, know that you just needed sleep. Try again another time, keep practicing, eventually you will stay awake.
Yoga Nidra works on all the layers of the koshas, physical, breath, mind, emotion and bliss, as well as on all our senses. It is an opportunity to re-store balance to the body through deep relaxation.
Try this yoga nidra practice I recently recorded for my Inspire Your Practice program on Patreon. Access the audio file here.