Rest And Reset For Health And HappinessMar 26, 2023
By Candy Price
Practicing daily rest and reset for health and happiness is critical for well-being. When thinking of the word rest, it is easy to assume it means getting a good night’s sleep. Undeniably, a good night’s rest is very important, but it is just one piece of the puzzle. Collectively, we live in a world of non-stop action where the hustle culture is a very real thing for many of us. Therefore, it is easy to get caught up in the rush of our daily chores and activities and forget that we are actually a miracle of life living us. Alternatively, decreasing time “doing” while increasing time “being” allows our sympathetic nervous systems to calm while our parasympathetic system takes the driver’s seat. Unquestionably, a daily practice of rest and reset should not feel like a luxury; better yet, it should be seen as a necessity.
Yoga teachers naturally take on the role of taking care of others. Without a doubt, this is such a gift to withhold. However, as yoga teachers, we must always remember to offer ourselves the same care as we do for others. We, too, need time for rest, reset, and meditation.
“Yoga teachers who fill their own cups on a regular basis easily assist others in filling theirs.”
There is a yoga term for the act of sitting with oneself, which is described as pratyahara. This term is sometimes described as “withdrawal of the senses.” Hence, it is a practice of drawing your mind inward to refrain from reacting to outside disturbances. Often, these ideas can be challenging to wrap your head around. However, they offer feelings of great inner peace and relaxation with practice. Furthermore, practicing pratyahara is essentially a practice of mindfulness, self-care, and self-love.
Beginner Pratyahara Exercise Habit to Promote Rest and Reset for Health & Happiness
I began this simple pratyahara habit many years ago before I learned much about pratyahara or yoga. Then, I was a new and exhausted breastfeeding mother. In addition, I found myself with a premature infant, meaning my nights consisted of short spurts of sleep between feedings. Surely, many new moms can relate to this type of exhaustion and the need for self-care time.
Upon waking in the early morning hours, I would practice keeping my eyes closed and trying to come back into the awake world gradually and with intention. Likewise, I would try to control my thoughts and ease into the transition between sleeping and waking life. To my surprise, I found this practice to offer me uplifting feelings of peace and happiness. Conversely, I experienced feelings of grounding and safety as well. Once I began to learn about yoga, I realized I had been practicing pratyahara for years. Furthermore, once I began teaching yoga to others, the importance of these practices became even more apparent. Below are some highlights of this method if you want to practice it yourself.
- Keep your eyes closed when feeling those first waking sensations in the morning.
- Secondly, try to breathe in long deep breaths, in through the nose and out through the nose while keeping the eyes closed.
- Feel the sensations of living inside your body, breathing inside your body, just being.
- Sometimes this type of concentration can enable you to remember your dreams. Often, these moments can send you deep moments of clarity or understanding.
- Avoid the pressure to think about the things you need to do. The silence often sends clues to problems you have been facing or answers to challenges in your life.
“Rest is not idle, nor wasteful. Oftentimes, rest is the most productive thing one can do for body and soul.”
Rest and reset is vital for a healthy and happy quality of life. Therefore, if the pratyahara early morning practice resonates with you, I invite you to practice it. It undoubtedly helped me during my sleep-deprived years as a new mother. Unquestionably, it is very second nature to me now. I practice this habit every morning and enjoy the moments it gives me with myself. After all, yoga teachers who fill their cups regularly easily assist others in filling theirs.
Furthermore, through my studies, I now realize this is a practice of mindfulness and, often, gratitude. I hope if you try it, you will find success with it as I have. As I always like to remember, it truly is the little habits over time that significantly impact health, wholeness, and happiness. So, in closing, I encourage you to practice rest and reset habits as a morning ritual and reap the benefits for your health, happiness, outlook, and well-being.
To read more articles like this one, visit Candy’s blog.