Yoga for Peace and Mind
After weeks of backbends and headstands, the effects of yoga on the body become apparent. Less evident to the naked eye, is the magic yoga does for our mental and emotional health. Yogis have been touting and sharing these benefits, and now science is backing up and uncovering these essential benefits of yoga. Take a deep breath and relax, as we share some important mind-bending and emotion-flexing gifts of yoga:
It’s All in Your Mind
Classical yoga teaches that the more you have certain thoughts, the more likely that you are to have them again in the future. Like grooves in a muddy road, these thoughts root deeper over time and practice. Now, scientists are backing up this notion with neuroplasticity confirming that the more you think or do something, the stronger the neural pathways become – in non-science terms: you are what you think, and Yoga helps you as well to think more positively about yourself the reality around you, which in turn continues to help reshape a more positive self and a more positive life.
A Wave of Emotions
Due to the strong mind-body connection of yoga, many emotional benefits come as well with consistent practice. This combination of a positive mental state and a healthier body sets the pace for an overall better mood through the physiological release of endorphins and other ‘happy’ chemical. In the end, you are happier, more self-accepting and have an increased sense of control. In addition, scientific research has also shown how yoga can help alleviate the symptoms of mental/emotional illnesses, such as anxiety or depression. Research further supports that a specific branch of yoga called Yoga Therapy could also help address the root cause of such depression or anxiety, providing long lasting relief.
The Happy Medium: Meditation
Catering to both our mental and emotional state is the Yogic practice of meditation. Most yoga practices end with a moment of meditation tailored to the session, allowing you many times to focus your thoughts and channel them in more positive and renewing ways. However the end goal of meditation is to quiet the mind to be free of thoughts. Research now shows that meditation is the most powerful yoga tool as it yields a surprising number of health benefits, including stress reduction, improved attention, better memory and an increased feeling of both creativity, compassion and self-acceptance.
Visit Ayama Yoga to start your yoga journey and begin reaping the practice’s hidden treasures.