4 Yoga Postures to Balance Your Emotions
Yoga has the power to unlock, heal and balance your emotions. For those of you who have a regular practice, you can probably attest to lying down in Savasana with tears streaming down your face or smiling so hard your face hurts.
Whether the energy of the Black Water Snake or just a change in the energetic system as a whole, 2013 has already been a year of intense change and momentum for many of us. By default we have been given the space to finally make peace with the inconsistencies, loose ends, relationships that no longer serve and things that we have been putting off in our lives.
With change this compelling, emotions are inevitable and what can be difficult is maintaining balance without letting yourself get swayed or uprooted. If you experience anxiety, depression (even on a mild level), lack of confidence, worthlessness or any of the other yucky feelings that we humans get to feel, these yoga asanas will do wonders to help.
1. Standing Forward Bend (Uttanasana****) – Maintain the length in your arms, legs, torso and chest as you bend forward placing your hands in front of your feet on the mat. Bend your knees as much as you need to or place your hands on blocks.
Allow any pressure or emotion to release and as you take 10-15 breaths in this pose, really root down with your hands and feet, drawing up healing energy from the ground. Be still.
2. Tree Pose (Vrksasana)** – Shift your weight onto one leg and raise the other leg, foot facing inward and place it upon your calf, thigh or in half lotus. Raise your arms above your head in prayer or with arms separated, palms facing in.
Take 10-20 breaths and breath deeply into your heart space. Feel your roots deep within the earth like a giant oak tree. Feel stable.
3. Warrior II Pose (Virabhadrasana II) – **Stand with your feet about three-and-a half to four-and-a-half feet apart with your front toes pointed straight and your back foot in at a 45 degree angle. Bend your front knee until your leg reaches a 90-degree angle and extend your arms. Lengthen your spine by tucking your tailbone in and down.
Breathe 20-25 breaths here, drawing energy and vitality from the earth. Feel strong, powerful, confident and beautiful. Shine out of your heart space.
4. Shoulder Stand (Salamba Sarvangasana) -** Note: This pose is for advanced practitioners only. If you do not have a regular yoga practice you can lie on your back and put your legs up in the air and breathe here.
Lie on your back and elevate your legs bringing them over your head until your feet touch the floor or a block. Place your hands up your back, lift your spine and elevate your legs. With spine straight and chin away from your chest, breathe here.
Take 25-50 breaths in this pose. Inversions help to shift perception and rejuvenate the body as well as tonify and cleanse the endocrine system. You may also choose to place your feet to the floor after completing your breaths transitioning into Plough Pose (Halasana).
With regular practice of yoga asanas, you will notice yourself feeling more balanced, joyful, confident and less abound by your fears, therein, facilitating transformation and change with emotional stability.
Science Agrees; Yoga Has Significant Effect on Cellular Health
It’s no secret there are innumerable health benefits to practicing yoga. Incorporating different elements of yoga into your life can result in profoundly positive changes to your mental and physical state. But what if implementing these yogic practices could actually affect your cellular composition? This might come as no surprise to swamis and devout yogis, but now science is beginning to find evidence that this may be true in both quantum and physiological studies.
Changes at the Micro Level
Our bodies replicate and produce new cells at a rate of roughly two million per second. Over the course of a day, that adds up to hundreds of billions of new cells. Aside from growth, many of these cells have different roles, often producing different proteins needed for necessary bodily functions. But with so much of this cell growth occurring, there is plenty of opportunities for mistakes and mutations to occur.
Of course, our bodies have systems for repairing faulty cells, but the process can go one of two ways. When a cell is found to be mutated, it is essentially told to destroy itself. These cells contain substances that can be harmful if expelled suddenly in a process called necrosis. Certain cellular substances can be toxic to other cells around them leading to inflammation and other negative side effects, known as cytotoxicity. But when this cell death occurs in a controlled process called apoptosis, the cell is contained with none of the potentially harmful material escaping and interacting with other cells.
Cell necrosis can be caused by a number of things, ranging from physical trauma to toxins and pathogens. And when our bodies experience illness and disease, the whole process of cell renewal can become inhibited and bogged down. Cell growth and repair can also be hindered by heat and stress.
A change in just a few degrees can lead to the unraveling of cell proteins and their subsequent death. Stress from environmental factors can also affect us at a cellular level, to the point that it can have a negative impact on hereditary traits passed down to our children. So, what can we do to prevent this?