Let’s be honest, there’s a little bit of crazy in all of us. Far from the common yoga misconceptions about those of us who practice, we certainly haven’t got it all figured out in life. In fact, many of us are using yoga as an effective tool to control the crazy. Thanks to the many positive mental benefits of yoga, yoga can be your best friend when it comes to tackling negative thoughts, emotions and feelings. Here are the 5 ways that yoga helps to control your inner crazy…
1. Yoga Reduces Stress and Anxiety
There’s a reason why yoga is such an effective stress buster, and it’s a scientific not just spiritual one. Practicing yoga helps to move you out of flight-or-fight mode and into a rest-and-digest mode (or in science speak: from the sympathetic nervous system to the parasympathetic nervous system). Our nervous system controls vital functions like heart rate, respiration and digestion. This has not only a physical, but a mental relaxation effect on your entire body.
2. Yoga Promotes Self Love
One of the focuses of yoga is self love and acceptance. It’s about working with and understanding your own unique body and mind. It requires us to deal with our own limitations on any given day. This encouragement of a non judgemental attitude towards yourself helps to build patience within, and ultimately a better relationship with yourself. The greater we cultivate self awareness the more capable we are of self love.
3. Yoga Tames Your Thoughts
Yoga is effectively a mindful practice through movement (as well as breath). This centering of the mind is vital in calming and minimising the thousands of thoughts that can constantly buzz around our busy minds. The impact is that taking a yoga class calms you down and puts crazy back in her cage.
4. Yoga Helps Your Emotions
When we practice yoga a few things happen physically that help better balance and encourage positive emotions. Yoga lowers blood pressure and heart rate, as well as increases your circulation. This helps to reduce cortisol levels, which are the stress hormone. At the same time, happy hormones like dopamine are released to make you feel like you can take on the world again.
5. Yoga Improves Your Focus
In this socially connected world that we live in, it seems there’s more and more distractions that surround us on a daily basis pulling us in every direction. The awareness and mindfulness part of yoga is a wonderful practice for cultivating concentration. Research shows that yoga is a great tool to improve our mental focus. Being able to focus on something not only helps productivity, but is one of the keys for success in whatever it is we’re trying to achieve.