Practicing Gratitude In The Yogic Realm And Beyond
You must have come across the term ‘Gratitude’ in the context of yoga and meditation. Well! Some of you might have used this term in your daily conversations as well. If you explore a bit more, you will find that it is trending. Everybody who is of a meditative disposition will talk about showing it and receiving it. It means someone, who has a positive outlook towards life, and is having an open heart. It is also believed to have a co-relation with physical health. Many researchers have also stated, that ‘Gratitude’ is a reflection of one’s mental wellbeing as well.
So, let us delve into the world of ‘Gratitude’ to solve some of the mysteries of life.
What Is Gratitude All About?
To be exact, it is a state of mind. Those who practice it, include thankfulness as a part of their existence. You can do it in several ways. Set an intention at the beginning of the day, before you begin any holistic activities, or before you leave home for work. It should be a part of your meditation routine, as well.
It arises from the belief that you should be thankful for whatever you have. In this process of practicing ‘Gratitude’, you will also stop thinking negatively about anything. By choosing to be thankful to the universe, you can push aside your fears, anxiety, and nervousness. Moreover, happiness, confidence, and strength will come your way, unhindered.
Yoga and gratitude are two sides of the same holistic vehicle. However, it is not just about what you do on the map. It is beyond what you see externally.
How To Practice Gratitude Through Yoga?
Although there are several ways by which you can practice gratitude, you should know how to incorporate it as a part of your yoga routine.
- The first thing that you ought to do, is set an intention. You can also call it Sankalpa, in the yogic realm. A Sankalpa is a short, positive sentence about what you want to achieve in the course of a day. You ought to create it with a lot of positivity and goal-oriented determination. Then only, it can transform into reality. There are a few statements that you can utilize in the course of the morning. But, whatever you say, it should be in the present.
- Meditate to clear your mind. Most people are so busy every day while going about their daily chores and attending to family commitments, that negativity can set in. So, you need to set aside at least 5-10 minutes each day, when you can sit quietly in a corner of your home, and breathe deeply. With each exhalation, imagine the negativity leaving your body. You can also light some incense sticks to give the space a pure ambience. Lighting a candle can further amplify the positivity in the environment. Once, the negativity has left your body, you can start thinking about the reasons, why you need to be grateful.
- Thirdly, you should practice some asanas that are Anahata chakra opening. You can also include the Throat opening chakra postures as well. If you regularly do these, you will be generating a lot of positive vibes. While performing all such yoga poses, you can recall the reasons for being grateful to the universe. Some of the postures that you should do as a part of the process are:
- Bhujangasana – It is also called the Cobra pose. In this posture, you lie on your stomach, and raise the upper body with the help of the hands. Look towards the ceiling, while maintaining the contact of the legs with the floor.
- Malasana – This is another posture which you must practice on a regular basis. You have to squat with the soles of the feet, placed flat on the ground. Hold the hands in a ‘Namaste’.
- Matsyasana – Also called the Fish pose, this is another Heart Opener.
- Breathing deeply, with full capacity is another way, you can develop awareness about the present moment. Our breath is a physical reminder that you are alive. While performing various yoga poses, ensure to stay connected with your breath. Feel that the inhalation and the exhalation is a gift. When you accept and understand this basic fact of life, you can feel immense joy.
- Mudra practice is another manner, in which you can practice gratitude. Hand mudras are the most common ones that can aid you in your meditation. Anjali mudra is the most common mudra, which you can practice with the postures or asanas. When you practice this mudra, it will lead to the birth of feelings of gratitude.
- You can also create an altar for spiritual activities. It can be just about anywhere. However, you should ensure that no one disturbs that space. You can place the pictures of deities, or family members, to whom you want to express your gratitude. Do keep a few incense, flowers and lamps to illuminate and beautify the space. The altar will remind you about the feelings of gratitude, each time you look at it.
- You should practice Karma Yoga, or service to society. When you give things, without expecting anything in return, it makes you radiate with positivity. Many yoga schools in India, has this as a part of their courses.
Always remember to acknowledge the kindness shown by others towards you, by saying ‘Thank You’.
Practicing Gratitude Outside The Realm Of Yoga
You can practice ‘Gratitude’ outside yoga, as a part of your daily life as well. You can just shout out aloud, saying that you are thankful to everyone who has led you to happiness. It can create far better results, than when you say it in your mind.
You can also write down, about all the things, you are grateful for. It is one of the powerful ways, through which you can connect the mind and body. Moreover, you should share your gratitude with others. You must also make it a practice, to challenge yourself in the face of difficulty.
You can also join a meditation and yoga course to learn about it, wholesomely. A good yoga school in India can also help you to pave the way towards this consciousness of gratitude.