Saturday, October 1, 2011

Joy & Happiness

Sometimes our days can be so hectic: full of appointments, responsibilities, obligations, meetings, and more. A lot of the time our days are structured around calendars, day planners, kids' soccer practice, and PTA meetings. With our lives being so full, we often miss the spontaneity in our lives. There is absolutely no time to go out have fun on a whim because you already have something scheduled to do. With all of this over-scheduled living, we miss the essence of the actual word: living. The pose I am featuring here is to help remember the joy and excitement that we all need in our lives on a regular basis. Think back when you were a kid. Yes, we had school and homework, but think of all the fun you used to have with your siblings and neighborhood friends. Just pure fun: playing tag, building sand castles, riding your bikes. Pure bliss. Happy Baby Pose (Ananda Balasana) The Sanskrit for this pose translates to Blissful Child, so this posture is to remind us of the simplicity of the child's life. Remember to be playful and spontaneous when life gets too complex. Lie on your back and bring your knees toward your heart. Set your intention here: ask for joy, peace, bliss, and happiness in your life....then smile! Keep it simple. Hold onto your bent knees with your hands then open your knees and feet wide. You will begin to feel a stretch in the inner thighs. Happy Baby Pose is a great way to provide release to tight hips, inner thighs, and backs. Hold here for a few breaths then take your feet up toward the ceiling. Your knees will remain bent and your legs wide. The bottoms of your feet will face the sky. Reach up and hold onto the bottoms of your feet from the inside of your legs. Gently press the feet downward. Your knees should be outside of your shoulders and moving toward the floor. The gentle press will create more of an opening in the inner thighs. You are now in Happy Baby Pose. You have formed a posture that you may have seen babies actually do! To provide more sensation, press your lower back toward the floor as well. This will further extend the spine and open up the hips. Remain in this pose for as long as you like. Breath (and smile) while you hold the posture. When you are finished with the pose, lie in Savasana to end your home practice. Keep in mind the desire to bring more joy and happiness into your life. The pose may encourage you to free up your schedule a bit so you can leave some room for a little fun. Go see a movie, take a walk outside, catch up on some gossip with a friend on the phone. Do anything that will bring a smile to your face. Namaste

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