HOW TO NOURISH YOUR BLISS AFTER A YOGA RETREAT
Guest post by Anke Graewer / Shine Yoga
Oh retreat! We feel so amazing on retreat. It’s the perfect place to unwind in a safe, nurturing environment, surrounded by uplifting friends and inspiring teachers. Energizing yoga practices, daily meditation and the beauty of nature all seep into our bones as we step out of the daily grind and allow ourselves to decompress and reconnect.
On a Yoga retreat you get to enjoy the luxury of being taken care of, you feel more connected to your body, you thrive with ease, and you experience transformative moments that can have a significant impact on your life.
It’s hard not to feel amazing in such a space!
But how can we keep that liberated, relaxed feeling once we’re back home? When the daily groove is switched on again, and we’re sucked back into the busyness of life, what can we do to nourish our bliss?
Whatever we do it should be as simple as relaxing on retreat! It should help us to feel good and integrate all of that retreat goodness into our daily life. With that in mind, here are some easy to apply tips to help you extend your bliss long after your yoga retreat has finished:
Breathing mindfully is powerful and it has an instant effect on your well-being. Just this one simple act can be a game changer. Breathing energizes your system with fresh oxygen to enhance Prana (our life force), bringing you into the present moment straight away. Pranayama (Sanskrit for Breathing) is a vitalizing technique you practice on retreat and its simplicity makes it perfect to build into your daily routine once you’re back home. In the morning, before you go to bed or whenever you need to, take the time for 10 conscious, full and deep belly breaths. Your mind and nervous system will thank you!
Tip: Sit with a straight spine or lay flat on the floor. Place one hand on your belly and the other on your heart centre. Feel your body rising and relaxing with every breath. Take less air in but with more quality. Use the breath to create space in your chest, breathing as slowly as you can. Like this you stimulate your heart center and open your energy channels.
Keep up your Yoga practice
Exercise! Make time in your day to drop into body awareness. On retreat you learned to reconnect to your body consciousness through regular yoga practice. Now you’ve got that feeling, don’t lose it! Even if you don’t have time for 90 mins classes (yes, those 120 mins yin yoga bliss on retreat were amazing) hop on the mat anyway. If you need to keep it short and sweet, the most important thing you can do for yourself is to show up. Setting a fixed time for this each week helps to establish a new, healthy habit. To make it easier, try creating a nice, dedicated yoga space at home or join a local studio. This will help you stay motivated and to stick to your practice. Once you experience how amazing yoga makes you feel, you won’t be able to stop doing it!
Eat nourishing food and practice mindful eating
Food is crucial for our well-being. The way we prepare it and how we eat it enhances our health and improves our state of mind. On retreat we take more time. We have the space to slow down, eat with more awareness and really taste our food. And this is easy to adapt in our daily life as well! We can slow down, mindfully prepare and consume what we eat.
Food is energy and consuming it creates a certain environment for energy in your body too. The best thing you can do to create a high quality energetic environment within is to consume fresh food as it’s nutrient packed and gives a great boost to your cells (kinda loving yourself from the inside out).
Tip: Buy locally and fresh, prepare your meals with love and take a moment of gratitude to say “thank you” before you eat. Chew slowly and mindfully, so you can taste all of those yummy different flavors.
Meditate and cultivate a positive mindset
Meditation is a great way to reconnect with, and to balance out, your mind and body. In meditation we switch into the role of the observer. So maintain the perspective you learned on retreat and encourage yourself to sit in meditation on a daily basis. Although your environment may not be so supportive and quiet like on retreat, and you might think you have no time, it’s important to do it anyway. You always have the time to set your mindset in a positive direction. Try creating a habit by meditating at a fixed time in the morning. Start small – even 5 minutes of conscious breathing can make the world of difference to your perspective later in the day. Don’t let the hustle and bustle suck you back into the vortex straight away. Keep your cool and meditate.
Most likely you went on retreat to change something, transform, grow, let go, or to learn something. If you felt inspired after a retreat, please don’t lose the flow. Put your thoughts into action and apply the change you felt so guided towards on retreat. Cultivate this energy to create small habits, daily habits that’ll help you to reach your new goals. Weather it’s letting go of bad habits, doing more exercise, making courageous life changes or simply being gentle to yourself and loving yourself more. Do it. You can!
Book your next retreat
This is a bonus tip. Keep an eye on the horizon by booking your next retreat. It feels so good to have a new, nurturing escape locked in and to have something to look forward to as you integrate all that yummy retreat goodness back into your daily life.
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