How to Still Your Mind Through Yoga
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‘I can’t seem to concentrate. There are too many thoughts,’ a number of us make this statement every now and then. Our mind is meant to think. It fills our lives with near-constant thoughts, emotions, feelings, and judgments. But there are times when our thoughts run amock, swinging from one branch to another, leaving us feeling frazzled and disorganized.
We lead a distracted life. To counter these, yogis, saints and seers controlled their thoughts through the ancient science of yoga and reached a higher level of awareness, ultimately living from their atman. Learn the ancient science of yoga to control your thoughts and take a step towards enlightenment and deep inner peace.
The most ancient art form of yoga offers ways to master our mind. If we are able to control our wandering thoughts, we can live in the present moment peacefully. We would then be able to live our lives with higher awareness, heightened spirits and with mindfulness. The practice of yoga provides us with tools to pacify our brain. It helps us rest in a state of calmness and quiet consciousness. It relieves us from all negative thoughts and connects us with our soul.
In yoga, there are different forms of practices – all with the goal of stilling distractions. Through meditation, yoga practitioners strive to enter a state of thoughtless awareness where even a ripple of thought cannot enter our brain. It stills the mind and brings a sense of tranquility. The practice of yoga asanas also silences the fluctuations of the mind. Moving our bodies along with attention to breath, our mind naturally begins to slow down and move into a calm state. Pranayama practice also stills the mind and soothes the nervous system.
Learn about yoga asanas to control your negative thoughts. Here is a list of four best yoga poses for controlling the mind:
Boat Pose or Navasana
Sit on a yoga mat with bent knees and arms on your hips. Roll your shoulder blades back, pressing your palms onto the floor. When you are ready, lift your toes off the mat. Flex your feet and bring your shin perpendicular to the mat with knees and thighs close to your chest. Hold your legs with your hands and straighten your legs in front. Now, extend your arms parallel to the ground or hold your toes with your hands, whichever is comfortable.
Dance Pose or Natarajasana
Stand on a yoga mat with erect spine and weight evenly distributed between the feet. Shift your weight on your left leg and bend your right knee so that your right heel is close to the right hip. Grab the right foot with your right hand. Raise your left arm up towards the ceiling and simultaneously bend forward. Raise your right leg higher and away from your torso. Hold the pose for several relaxed breaths.
Eagle Pose or Garudasana
Begin in mountain pose with arms by your sides. Shift your weight to your left leg. Raise your right leg and drape your right knee over your left knee with right foot hooked to the left leg’s calf. Extend your arms parallel to the floor and fold your arms in such a way that left arm comes under the right arm. Press your palms together with fingers pointing towards the ceiling. Slightly lower your body to the ground.
Standing Forward Fold or Uttanasana
Stand tall on a yoga mat with hands resting on your hips. Upon exhalation, bend forward at the hips and let the crown of your head hang down. Make sure your hips are aligned with the heels and hands resting on the floor. Go deeper into the pose with each exhalation. Hold the pose for several deep breaths.
Want to deepen your understanding on yoga and learn how to still the mind? Go on a 300-hour yoga teacher training course!