Updated: Jan 26
Living my best Carrie Bradshaw life, as I write this, sat in a trendy coffee shop with my Mac, not in NYC, but Dubai, narrating my thoughts in my own head.
I've been sat for some time thinking about what to write about, I had to order a second coffee. I was stuck with negative thoughts, along the lines of 'who would want to read a blog or anything written by me', very nearly not bothering and waiting (for what?) then it came to me, write about the negative thoughts, everyone has them, and everyone needs to be kinder to themselves.
But what has that got to do with yoga I hear you ask? 'AHIMSA'
'No, I didn't just sneeze, 'Ahimsa' it is one of 'Yama, which is one of' the 8 limbs of yoga- still not making any sense, just hang on...
The 8 limbs of yoga (in a very small nutshell) offer guidance on how to live a meaningful and purposeful life, they are basically a guide which yogi's live by, they are the moral rules to guide you on how to treat yourself and others, and other than the physical side of yoga, this is what I was drawn to. What is great about them is that you do not eed to practice yoga for them to be in your life, they are adaptable and are for everyone.
The 8 limbs are:
•Yama (5 restraints)
• Niyama (+5 observances)
The Yamas and the Niyamas are the first two branches of the limbs (great for me to start here, I have at least 10 blogs for each)
Ahimsa is the first branch of the Yamas-it the principle of non-harming.
Our thoughts play such a big role in our overall wellbeing. You may be the healthiest person you know; eating well, exercising lots, drinking your green smoothies, and taking supplements you need.. doing everything ‘right’ – but if your thoughts are still harmful, you can bet you’re not feeling as good as you could, have you ever noticed that when you're in a bad mood it resonates throughout your body, everything seems to be 'off' at the same time, this is an effect of these negative thoughts.
If following ahimsa we will actively ensure that we are being mindful of our thoughts. For example, when we think negatively, we send messages through our body that cause the fight or flight response, secreting cortisol (the ‘stress hormone’) in to the body. This lowers the immune system, making us more susceptible to illness and physical pain. It’s not just thoughts about ourselves we should be mindful of; Jealousy, judgement, anger and resentment – while directed at someone else – just come back to bite us by making us feel bad too.
This brings me to my point, a perfect example of Ahimsa therefore is for me to just go ahead and write this blog. and not let my own judgemental thoughts put me off, if one person reads this and is kinder to themselves that day, or someone else then I have achieved my purpose.
Think about one thing that you are being too hard on yourself this might be diet, your appearance, something at work, deadlines, and actively push this thought away, be kind to yourself.
There it is my first blog, keeping it short and sweet for now.
I am sure (hopefully) that in blogs to come that I will look back at this one and see how far I have come.
Next blog I will talk about the second Yama, 'staya', but don't worry, I promise that my blogs will be for EVERYONE, with a splash of yoga philosophy.
FREEBIE- to celebrate my first blog I have created a 40 minute Yin Yoga class for you to do in the comfort of your own home. Grab a blanket, your mat (or on carpet if you don''t have a mat, and grab cushions) .
The theme of the class is winter, the poses have been selected to encourage rest an reflection, and for those of you interested in the more exercise side, the pose will help release tension in the lower half of the body (there's more info in the video)
Please leave any feedback you might have on the video, or email me directly, the videos are there for my tribe so only the best.