Soothing the Nervous System
Most of us live our lives over stimulated by technology and with over packed schedules and enormous to do lists, and so we are habitually switched into the Sympathetic Nervous System; the high stress ‘fight or flight’ mode, constantly prepared or preparing for the next thing. Yoga Nidra helps us find rest in the parasympathetic nervous system; a restful, peaceful place of awareness, which is crucial for healing.
It is a well known and very well studied fact that lack of sleep contributes to a whole host of other issues such as burnout, depression, and a weakened immune system to name but a few. It is vital to get enough sleep and Yoga Nidra can help. By switching on that parasympathetic nervous system, bringing you into your body and slowing the brain waves down, this deeper relaxation can help you reach a deeper state of sleep.
Kind of like rubbing your belly and patting your head – we can’t think and feel the body at the same time, so by being guided through a rotation of the body, we can slow down our thoughts and we switch from thinking, to feeling and the body naturally relaxes. Feeling the body brings us into it, into the present moment, accepting and letting go.
As we become more aware of the body and we are able to connect with it, we are better able to sense what our body needs and by developing this awareness we can anticipate sickness and burnout, keeping ourselves healthier and in turn, happier. Being disconnected with our body brings issues such as external judgement of the way we look, eating disorders and other forms of physical harm or neglect arising from a disassociation with our physical selves.
As we reconnect with our body and our wants and needs, we are better able to develop an awareness of our emotions and feelings. This gives us the ability to observe ourselves and helps us slow things down in order to assess and respond in a more informed, effective and empathic way.
Memory aid & Creativity
(I borrowed this from a Breathing Space Yoga article because I couldn’t have put it better myself!)
Yoga Nidra takes you through different brainwave frequencies and states of consciousness, as we do through regular sleep, except we travel through consciously.
When we reach the Theta and Alpha-Theta brainwaves, indicative of REM sleep (our deepest sleep) we enhance creativity, emotional memory, perceptual and sensory processing and movement of memory from short to long term. In regular sleep this us where we dream, where the brain is processing experience. This includes the things we are learning.
If you want to give Yoga Nidra a try I have lots of pre-recorded ones on my Insight Timer Channel, or let me know if you are looking for something specific and I will see what we can do to help.
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