Yoga nidra guides you through a passive whole-body relaxation, from your toe tips to the top of your head. Ideally, you do this practice in comfortable clothes on a yoga mat. I tend to rest on my bed, but I’ve also snuck in a yoga nidra session in the front seat of my car while waiting on the kids to get out of preschool. Goddess knows, you take your rejuvenation when you can get it!
***UPDATE: February 17 – March 10, 2014
Yoga Nidra for Women in Nashville series
now open for registration!!
My favorite Yoga Nidra track is one from Rod Stryker. His “Relax into Greatness” CD includes a 5-minute introduction, a long practice that runs about 45 minutes, and a short practice that runs 27 minutes. I rely on the short practice most of the time, and treat myself to the long practice when I have more time or when I’ve been feeling rundown.
Relaxation isn’t the same as sleep, Rod explains in the introduction. We actually need both. Sleep works its magic on the body, restoring our cell tissue and giving parts of the brain a rest. But clearing emotional and mental tension requires something else, something more like relaxation and meditation. As a mom and a wife and a *me,* that emotional and mental clearing feels so refreshing. After yoga nidra I feel lighter and much more present. My husband and kids don’t exactly realize it, but they LOVE my yoga nidra practice!
One final thing I appreciate about the Relax into Greatness yoga nidra: Rod, whose voice is fab-u-lous, talks you through setting a positive affirmation for something you’d like to achieve in the next 6 to 18 months. So while I’m nurturing myself deeply in the moment, I’m also signaling to my brain and to my guardian angels that I’ll be ready for more goodness in the future. It all feels like an incredibly efficient and delicious way to care for myself, so that I’m better able to care for my family.
If you’re already practicing yoga nidra, we’d love to hear how it nurtures you! And if you’re trying to figure out when to work yoga nidra intro your routine, here are a few ideas to get you started, or to take you deeper into your practice…
When to practice yoga nidra:
- When you just can’t “sleep when baby sleeps”
- When you notice you’re bouncing from one thing to the next without getting anything done
- When you’re working on something big, like a different approach to night-time parenting, a new job, or moving to a new home
- When you’re trying to upgrade your self-care with a personal yoga practice, an exercise routine, or healthier eating
- When you feel worn out
- When you’re between tasks
- When you realize you have just about 45 minutes left until you’re back into full-on mom mode
- When you have the gift of a few hours to yourself, start with yoga nidra
- Just before falling asleep at night
Sweet (yoga) dreams, mamas!