Does the above quote bring rushing back all your unfulfilled desires? Are you overwhelmed by the urge to don an adventurer’s hat and live a full circle filled with stories? Begin life anew? Take the impending journey that you've always wanted to? Mr. Sarvesh Shashi, Founder & CEO, SARVA - Yoga, Mindfulness and Beyond, shared with HerZindagi on what yoga truly does to an individual. He has explained why people get addicted to it, as in what makes Yoga so important for people and why does this form of fitness becomes a way of living for so many.
What if I told you that the quote in itself holds a completely different meaning? Although it holds true for all your thoughts, it needs a new perspective. Let's recalibrate it. All of us are part of a journey - the journey of life. While we aspire to travel every nook and corner of the world, how many of us have travelled to the depths of ourselves? Understanding geography is fine, but ever wondered what it is to understand the human conscience? The highs and lows of our mind?
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The boundaries that are set within? Now, that's the journey none thinks about. Sounds complex, I agree but our forefathers foresaw the importance of such a revelation and hence have equipped us with a rather powerful tool to discover our true self - Yoga.
Yes, that's right. Yoga has always been considered an enabler of flexibility and strength to the body; the mental benefits of which are often not spoken of. Whilst being an age-old practice, the effect of yoga and mindfulness on our body and mind is a work of science, backed by studies and researches conducted by premier institutions. Here's how yoga assists the adventurer in you on your journey of self-exploration.
It is well known that the human body comprises of 7 chakras, which when aligned lead man to the ultimate state of awareness and wholesome wellbeing. While the Muladhara (Root), Svadhisthana (Sacral), Anahata (Heart), Vishuddha (Throat), Ajna (Third eye), and Sahasra (Crown) Chakra have their own purpose, it is the Manipura or Solar Plexus Chakra that is responsible for regulating your physical, mental and spiritual energy. It guides your inner strength, beliefs, and thoughts. A strong and balanced solar plexus leads to increased self-worth, heightened sense of self-awareness, clarity of thought and confidence.
With regular practice of Yoga, your body and mind become flexible. It breaks open the limitations that one was bound by at the beginning of the practice. For example, you start your practice with a simple downward dog, as you progress, in a matter of few months, you see yourself mastering the Sirasasana (a headstand).
Isn’t that an achievement? In every stage of your practice, you witness small surprises coming your way. You experience yourself breaking the barriers that restrict you physically, mentally and emotionally; hustling harder. And eventually, this makes you confident, more composed. With a newfound clarity and perseverance, you begin to process your situations differently, expressing your thoughts and actions in tandem.
As humans, we are bound by preconceived notions. Our mind is plastic, limitless. And yet we are often riddled by thoughts of our tasks being impossible and sometimes give up. We set our boundaries due to our feelings of fear, insecurities, and doubts. This is where Yoga serves as your trump card.
With regular practice, you begin to witness the change, your body flows naturally to the movements and your mind becomes supportive of your actions. For example, in the beginning, you might have struggled to hold an asana for a minimum of 30 seconds, staggering and eventually letting it go, but as you progress you notice that you can hold the same asana and even advanced ones with ease. And your mind no longer thinks it's hard or you might lose balance. The minute you get into the posture, your mind sends receptors that make sure your fears are turned to abilities.
Yoga bestows you with the power to unlock, heal and balance emotions. Whenever you find yourself in tensed or stressful situations, which make it difficult to keep calm, taking a few deep breaths will always do the trick. It is also believed that yoga helps in releasing energy blockages, known as granthis in Sanskrit.
These blockages are often formed in the lower back area, the heart chakra, the throat chakra and near the navel region. Yoga poses and breathing techniques have been designed to help release the said blockages. It helps build a healthy foundation to address one’s feelings and build emotional strength.
Now, if you ask me if yoga will help you when you're on an actual adventure; then my answer is YES. Yoga builds a strong core, muscle strength and balance; all of which are essential for hard journeys that involve Treks and other adventure activities, be it surfing, skydiving, parasailing, etc. Well, the best part, Yoga plays a great role in boosting your immunity. Nobody likes to fall sick on a vacay, do they?
In short, with Yoga, you begin knowing your body. The things you can master and the things where you need to practice. It lets your mind travel through the corners of your system, to the darkest depths of consciousness, awakening innate potential, building confidence, shedding light and energies that transform you in ways you always imagined. And that, in reality, is an experience to hold close. An adventure not many takes, but definitely should.