As we wind down 2017 it's important to get still and keep our writing commitments. In the midst of the holiday season finding quiet time can be easier said than done, however. Our guest blogger, Sari Leigh, owner of Anacostia Yogi in Washington DC has a few tips on how to center ourselves and calm our restless minds. This original post appeared on her blog, AnacotiaYogi.com titled 5 Tips for Stillness
If you are seeking a pathway toward a quiet mind, you must first get beyond the buzzing cell phone, the rambling television, the nifty iPad or kindle. Our modern web of technological clutter has created a monster of mental confusion.
Finding stillness is one breath away.
Most of us want to quiet the frenetic mind. But we just don’t know how. We need to take a retreat from the chaos and escape into our inner rhythms. I found 5 tips for creating stillness in the summertime.
Tip 1) Find Your Mantra
A mantra is simply a short statement of repetition such as “I am light." Your mantra could be a bible verse, a quote, or an ancient phrase that sends a powerful and positive vibration through your consciousness. Repeat your personal mantra when you need to get on a clear path toward positive thinking.
Tip 2) Find Your Sacred Place
The energies that we pick up every day from those around us leave a residue of confusion and self-doubt. Take time to take refuge in a sacred place. My sacred place is on a lake in upstate New York.
Sacred Spaces make for powerful sources of energy.
I can meditate on a mountaintop or in a rustic wooden gazebo. Watching the fog rise from the lake makes me feel light and free. Seek out a sacred space that helps you regain your self-confidence.
Tip 3) Find Your Breath
When we finally reach the promised land of stillness, we often have no idea what to do with this time! Don’t get restless and pull out your cell phone. Instead, pull out a breathing technique. I use the alternate nostril breathing to create balance for my nervous system.
Tip 4) Find Your Guided Meditation
Meditation is one of the most difficult aspects of yoga. Inviting the brain into a neutral state requires that we experiment with thinking about nothing. Begin with a guided audio meditation to help keep your mind on track. Here is my free meditation download to help you get started!
Tip 5) Find Your Smell
Aromatherapy is the use of natural scents to create a state of relaxation. I have used lavender oil for over 5 years to help me cope with anxiety and nervousness.
Essential oils like lavender are great to settle the mind.
Scents are a powerful way to create a state of peacefulness. Play around with scents that lift your energy, calm your mood and help you feel relaxed. My favorite essential oils are grapefruit, lavender, and lemon.
Stillness Is One Breath Away
These tips will help you realize that inner peace is just one word, one thought, one sound and one breath away. When you can quiet the mind, you will discover that you have greater clarity and a better grasp on moving through obstacles with grace.
Sari created Anacostia Yogi to offer a platform for Black women's health and healing through yoga. Sarianne is a 200 hour Registered Yoga Instructor. She holds a Master's of Arts in Women's Studies and she is completing a PhD in Counseling at The George Washington University. Sari uses her blog Anacostia Yogi to explore mind, body, spirit healing and social justice for Black women.
Sari is also a contributer to a Sassin Through Sadhana, a volume I am guest co-editing for the Race and Yoga Journal out of the University of California, Berkeley. You can find her story on how she became a yoga instructor here https://escholarship.org/uc/item/489239q9 Her piece is entitled, "God, Nature, and Yoga as Somewhere in Between."
For more information on how to write your own story please contact me here