Yoga Love

How to Take Your Yoga Mindset Off the Mat and Into the Real World

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If you practice yoga regularly, you know the feeling well of rolling your mat up and leaving class with a new glow. However, it can be hard to retain that feeling once you return to the “real world” of jobs, chores, errands, and obligations. Some days, that glow all but fades away until the next yoga class when you roll your mat back out, sit cross-legged, and look up at your teacher expectantly, the promise of serenity and achievement on the horizon.

That yoga feeling doesn’t have to stay trapped in the studio, though. There are plenty of ways you can take your yoga mindset off the mat and into the rest of your life. All you have to do is recognize where you’re already honoring yoga commandments and build them out to better the wellbeing of yourself and those around you.

Working Toward Hitting That Next Pose

In yoga class, there’s nothing better than finally nailing that pose you’ve been working toward for weeks. If you think about it, when you’re doing this, you’re developing your growth mindset just by stretching yourself a little further with each practice. You can bring this mentality off the mat and into the rest of your life by always taking at least one small step toward your goals every day. Be consistent with your practice on and off the mat and you’ll be amazed at how quickly you overcome your next hurdle.

 

Taking Risks

You’re not going to sit there and watch the rest of your yoga peers attempt a tricky headstand without seeing what you’re made of too, right? No matter how goofy you end up feeling? As we know, yoga is all about taking risks and trying new things, and you should uphold that mindset outside of the studio, too. Volunteer to take on that big presentation in the office. Make a new friend and invite them to dinner. Try that unfamiliar item on the menu. Don’t be afraid to take some risks – you never know what you’re missing out on!

 

Transforming Your Attitude

Not all days are sunshine and rainbows, and not all yoga classes are, either. Eventually, you’ll take a class that tries your athleticism and mental strength, and it’ll take everything in you to keep pushing through. If you’ve ever been in that situation, you know you can only change your attitude toward the situation at hand, reform your discomfort into a positive outlook, and push on. You know savasana is always in sight! In life when you find yourself feeling negative, transform your attitude into one of positivity and confidence. And if you fail, keep on pushing until you don’t. Negative thoughts can’t lead to a positive life!

 

Generating Loving-Kindness

Loving-kindness flows strong during your yoga practice, so why can’t it continue when you’re off the mat? Be sure to always love yourself and those around you. Practice self-care in mental and physical health, help others through their problems, and send out loving vibes to the rest of the universe. Yoga studios are a great place to begin generating kindness. If you need a starting point, take an early morning class and try to carry those vibes with you for the rest of the day. There is no such thing as too much love!

 

What yoga-oriented mindsets resonate most with you? How do you keep your practice going once you leave the mat? 

Chasing Nirvana Yoga offers on-site yoga and wellness classes to employers and employees, tenant-residing buildings, community events, and more. To set up your free consultation, please visit www.chasingnirvanayoga.com.

4 Books for Yogis to Read Today

There’s nothing like reading a good book! Plus, studies show its good for you. Adults who read for 30 minutes a week report feeling 20% more satisfied with their lives, according to Quick Reads.

Here at Chasing Nirvana Yoga, we always preach about the importance of self-care, and taking a half hour to read a couple days a week certainly counts! Reading is a form of mindfulness. Being with a book for a bit of time resets the mind and serves as a stress reliever.

If you’re a yogi, wellness practitioner, or individual looking to expand your reading list, be sure to check out the following four books.

 

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1. Wanderlust: A Modern Yogi’s Guide to Discovering Your Best Self by Jeff Krasno

Like the wildly popular festivals that have taken the yoga world by storm, Wanderlust is a road map for the millions of people engaged in cultivating their best selves. For the 20 million people who grab their yoga mats in the United States every week, this book gives a completely unique way to understand "yoga"—not just as something to do in practice, but as a broader principle for living. Wanderlust helps readers navigate their personal path and find their own true north, curating principles that embody the brand and lifestyle—authentic yoga practices, provocative thinking, music, art, good food, eco-friendly activities, and more. Each chapter includes expert yoga instruction by renowned teachers; inspiring music playlists to motivate readers to practice; thought-provoking art; awesome recipes for delicious, healthy foods to sustain a yoga regimen; and fun, unexpected detours. This wide array of ideas and beautiful visuals is designed to be hyper-stimulating—whether a reader follows the arc of the book from beginning to end or dips into chapters at random, she is sure to find something pleasing to the eye, to feel motivated to practice, and to want to reach for her deepest desires and dreams. This book brings the Wanderlust festival experience into any reader's home.

 

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2. Quantum Healing by Deepak Chopra

More than twenty-five years ago, Quantum Healing helped transform Deepak Chopra into a cultural phenomenon. Now Dr. Chopra, hailed by Time as “the poet-prophet of alternative medicine,” returns to this groundbreaking exploration of consciousness and the power of mindfulness, adding the latest scientific research as well as expanded thoughts on the connection between body and mind. Inspired by the unexplained recovery of patients in his own practice who had been given just a few months to live, Dr. Chopra began his search for answers. After returning to his native India to explore humanity’s most ancient healing tradition, Ayurveda, he combined those insights with Western medicine, neuroscience, and physics. What he discovered—a “network of intelligence” in the human body with the potential to defeat cancer, heart disease, even aging itself—forms the basis of Quantum Healing. In this new edition, Dr. Chopra once again offers a fascinating intellectual journey and a deeply moving chronicle of hope and healing.

 

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3. Real Happiness at Work: Meditations for Accomplishment, Achievement, and Peace by Sharon Salzberg

Real Happiness at Work brings the profound benefits of meditation to an area where people could use it most―the workplace. And it’s written by one of the world’s leading meditation teachers. A follow-up to Real Happiness, the New York Times bestseller, Sharon Salzberg’s Real Happiness at Work is a practical guide to improving work life through mindfulness, compassion, and ingenuity. It’s about being committed without being consumed, competitive without being cruel, managing time and emotions to counterbalance stress and frustration. It shows readers how to be more creative, organized, and accomplished in order to do better, more productive work. Dividing the idea of workplace satisfaction into eight pillars, Real Happiness at Work is filled with secular wisdom; core meditations on broad themes like motivation, awareness, and seeing the good in others; and more than a dozen exercises, including Moving From Me to We and When Things Go Wrong. Sprinkled throughout the book are short “stealth” meditations, the kind that are quick, private, and doable anywhere―“Let the phone ring three times, follow your breath, then pick it up” and “For an upcoming one-on-one conversation, resolve to listen more and speak less.” Even the best jobs are filled with stress, tough deadlines, impatient bosses, seemingly endless meetings―all the ills of harried life. But as science increasingly shows, meditation is the antidote.

 

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4. 10% Happier: How I Tamed the Voice in My Head, Reduced Stress Without Losing My Edge, and Found Self-Help That Actually Works by Dan Harris

After having a nationally televised panic attack, Dan Harris knew he had to make some changes. A lifelong nonbeliever, he found himself on a bizarre adventure involving a disgraced pastor, a mysterious self-help guru, and a gaggle of brain scientists. Eventually, Harris realized that the source of his problems was the very thing he always thought was his greatest asset: the incessant, insatiable voice in his head, which had propelled him through the ranks of a hypercompetitive business, but had also led him to make the profoundly stupid decisions that provoked his on-air freak-out. Finally, Harris stumbled upon an effective way to rein in that voice, something he always assumed to be either impossible or useless: meditation, a tool that research suggests can do everything from lower your blood pressure to essentially rewire your brain. 10% Happier takes readers on a ride from the outer reaches of neuroscience to the inner sanctum of network news to the bizarre fringes of America’s spiritual scene, and leaves them with a takeaway that could actually change their lives.

 

What yogi-friendly books do you recommend? Sound off in the comments!

Chasing Nirvana Yoga offers on-site yoga and wellness classes for employers, tenant-residing buildings, community spaces, events, and more. To schedule your free consultation, visit www.chasingnirvanayoga.com.

Kara Crow Spotlight: CNY Health Coaching

When it comes to reaching your optimum health, it’s important to examine your lifestyle and habits overall. Even if you think you just want to focus on improving your diet, losing excess weight, gaining more muscle or achieving another specific goal, all these aspects of health are connected. With guidance on nutrition, exercise, mindfulness and more, you can more easily get to where you want to be.

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Kara Crow, one of Chasing Nirvana Yoga’s newest team members, is here to help you set and reach goals that will allow you to be the best and healthiest version of yourself with her health coaching skills. Originally from Stowe, VT, Kara attended the University of Vermont before moving to Boston on somewhat of a whim in 2011 to be a personal trainer. Although she planned to race on the U.S. Ski Team and pursue a career as a professional athlete, life happened and circumstances changed. In her senior year of college, her adviser suggested she try an internship that focused on personal training.

Q: How did you get into health coaching?

A: I got sick a few years ago and had to find alternative means for healthcare because the conventional model wasn’t working. No one could tell me what was wrong with me. I was debilitated in terms of mental and physical function. I was tired, wasn’t sleeping, felt miserable, and I wasn’t living my life the way I wanted to. I went through all kinds of testing and functional medicine, and eventually got my life back. I was fully functional with two years of trial and error, but I decided I had to know more about it. Functional medicine led me to health coaching. Health coaching is a little less specific than functional medicine, but both have a lot to do with eating and nutrition. Health coaching and functional medicine both look at the system as a whole. You have symptoms, but what is the underlying cause?

Q: What were your next steps?

Kara Crow finishing her first marathon in October 2018. (instagram.com/karacrow)

Kara Crow finishing her first marathon in October 2018. (instagram.com/karacrow)

I had personal training clients come to me with a host of ailments, and I didn’t feel like I knew exactly what was wrong. There’s so much going on underneath the layers of the onion. I wanted to know what makes people tick and how to help people outside of the fitness aspect. I wanted to be able to do more with my skill set, reach more people and have more education to help my clients. I wanted the tools to help propel them to the next step.


Q: Why Boston?

A: Boston has a relatively young crowd of people ranging from entrepreneurs to corporate people; there are lots of people to get to know. It’s a city, but not one so busy that it’s overwhelming like New York. I love that there’s so much opportunity if you know where to look, especially when it comes to healthcare. Not only do we have one of the best hospitals in the country, but also some of the best holistic practitioners.

Nutrition is key! (instagram.com/karacrow)

Nutrition is key! (instagram.com/karacrow)

Q: What are the health coaching classes like?

A: I’m currently doing health coaching for small groups, in which we go through the basics of behavior change throughout a six-week time period. We start by discussing: why is change so hard? Then, we begin creating a structure to drive the change: SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, Time-bound) Goals.

From there, we dive into nutrition. I keep it simple, breaking down to the types of foods, explaining calories and advising on how to modify dishes at restaurants to make them healthier. The next week we talk about movement including the benefits of exercise and what you’re “supposed to” do in terms of amount and type. People tend to say, “If I can’t do it in full, I’ll do nothing.” Even if Mayo Clinic says do x minutes of exercise, doing y minutes instead of zero minutes is still progress.

Get more insight for how to reach your fitness goals with CNY health coaching in Boston, MA, by Kara Crow. Chasing Nirvana Yoga provides on-site yoga, meditation and other health-focused classes around the country.