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7 Day Sadhana Challenge

You know how to look after your physical health…
but what about your mental and spiritual health?

Adding meditation to your life has many benefits, such as:

  • Stress reduction
  • Reduce anxiety naturally
  • Improve overall sense of wellbeing
  • Increase mental clarity
  • Bring peacefulness to the heart and mind
  • Reduce reactiveness and increase responsiveness
  • Develop mind awareness
  • Increase happiness
  • Increase creativity
  • Reduce and/or heal depression
  • Increase insights
  • Uncover your true self

A daily Sadhana (dedicated practice) is the perfect way to make meditation a part of your day so you can enjoy all these benefits, whilst providing a means to discovering your highest truth.

In this simple, straight-forward practice I will teach you how to add the practice of meditation to your life in a way that is maintainable for life, and not to mention enjoyable.
I’ve broken it down into 3 stages.
So if you only have 10mins available, just do the first stage.
If you have 20mins available, you can do stage 1 and 2.
And if you have 30mins – do the whole practice.

The challenge includes:

  • Your simple step by step meditation program
  • An audio file explaining what to do and how to do it
  • A bonus Ayurvedic Psychology cheat sheet to help you understand how your mind operates and how you can adjust your lifestyle to make your mind your best friend (not your worst enemy!)

This is the number 1 self care practice that all my clients and students are raving about!
Try it for yourself and experience the benefits!

Sign up here now – starts next week!! Share it with a friend and take the challenge together!

See you in the challenge!

 

Yoga Brain

Yoga Brain

Imagine for a second you’re walking along a yellow brick road with your dog Toto, bewildered and naive, and all of a sudden a scarecrow starts giving you directions. Except, he gets mixed up, arm over arm pointing in opposite directions because he “hadn’t got a brain.”

Before I started practicing yoga, I was Dorothy, figuratively. I was lost and confused and I didn’t know which part of myself to listen to– which life direction would make me the happiest. I was mixed up, continuing the mental chats over and over again until I realized I hadn’t a clue about life direction, path or emotional stability.

If I only had a yoga brain.

Is what future me says today, and what I’ll say forever more.

During my life struggle in my 20s, it was difficult for me to be decisive, present, content, happy or calm. It seemed that everyday I was overanalyzing my life plan, thinking far into the future, comparing myself to others, depressed and anxious.

And then came yoga.

Just as it did for a group of 17 random adults in a study conducted by researcher Chris Streeter, yoga improved my mood and decreased anxiety.

We all have a brain chemical called GABA: gamma-amino butyric acid, “which is associated with improved moods and decreased anxiety,” says Streeter. And when the yoga group practiced for four weeks compared to a group that walked over that same period, yoga proved to be the better mood booster.

Exercise is paramount, but yoga, yoga is paramount for emotional stability, improved moods and what this study proves to show: calmness and contentment.

More research has shown that yoga enlarges certain parts of your brain. And very important parts at that.

Yoga increased the size of the areas of your noggin that: contain the mental map of your body, are involved in directing attention, decrease stress (the hippocampus), are the keys to our concept of self, and the visual cortex.

Helping Us Become Self Aware

A big part of why yoga has all of these benefits, is because of the breathing involved in the practice. The connection of mind and body.

When we’re stressed our bodies instinctively tense our muscles, we start to breathe rapidly, our minds become anxious, stress hormones elevate and our heart beats faster.

And during the asanas, the sometimes very difficult holds, bind poses and repetitive sun salutations, this can happen. Our bodies are thrust into stress response

But our controlled, slow breathing has incredible effects.

We slow our heart rates, push negative, stressful thoughts out of our brains and out of stress response and stay relaxed through these difficulties.

We are Retraining Our Brain Habits

In fact there are several poses that aid in diminishing stress and train our brain to react to tension through stretching, breathing and consciousness.

But yogi brain doesn’t just stop at reduced stress– we still haven’t touched on improved memory, concentration, motor speed, information processing, emotion regulation (really feeling in general) or pain tolerance!

Studies show that yoga and meditation stimulate “your brain’s ability to recreate itself,” says B. Grace Bullock, PhD.

Your brain is able to grow and change throughout our entire lives, but the only way we can make this happen is by constantly challenging it!

And yoga, for example, creates new connections between brain cells (synaptogenesis), allowing your brain to rewire itself and change. Neuroplasticity is the brain’s ability to develop new connections and occurs a lot when we’re younger, learning new skills and encountering new challenges.

But by doing new hobbies or activities, practicing the art of yoga and repeating the practice, you can keep your brain healthy. Yoga and meditation emphasize awareness and attentiveness, and are constantly stimulating our brains to remain calm, take on new challenges and to be self aware. Reinforce your connections, strengthen your hardwiring and keep practicing!

But before I go, I’ll leave you with this.

Ongoing yoga practice can result in increased insula gray matter, meaning, the part of the brain that feels gets bigger.

So not only does this mean that we are more tolerant to pain when this happens, studies show, but this area of the brain is responsible for emotions like: love, gratitude, self-confidence, empathy, trust and truthfulness, to name a few.

If some of these are areas you struggle in– I know for me it was loving deeply, appreciating what I have and being honest with myself, perhaps a weekly yoga practice will aid your brain just as it did mine.

Don’t be a scarecrow. Rid your brain of hay. And take up a practice that replaces that hay with innumerable benefits to your new brain!

Talk soon! (:

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5 Poses a Day #2

5 poses: Completely doable. No fuss. Loads of benefits.

Yoga asanas are the perfect way to workout.

They work our body on all movement planes, they increase strength whilst promoting flexibility; they are weight bearing without jarring the joints; and depending on the style of your practice, they can be a great cardio workout too.

They have a calming effect on the mind whilst  simultaneously stimulating yet balancing the nervous system.

They assist with lymphatic drainage.

They bring fresh blood to the skin, giving you a healthy ‘glow’.

Asanas give us an opportunity to slow down, and take time out.

But there is reason why they are superior to your standard exercise regime.

Asanas, in conjunction with full yoga breathing, clear the nadis (energy channels) and allow for the free flow of energy up the central energetic channel- the sushumna. The sushumna is the flow centre for the sattvic (mode of goodness) energy within our body. This helps to bring us into a state that is more conducive to meditation and the yoga lifestyle on a whole. Asanas influence the mind by lightening and brightening our thoughts, and gently bringing about mental clarity. Which is why they are considered a superior way to work out!

Sometimes when I feel the pressure of ‘shoulding’ all over my asana practice (ie. I should be doing some asanas; I should have done my poses this morning, etc), I physically stop and remind myself that asanas are not something to should all over myself about.

They are there to help me; a tool I can implement to assist me in living a more sattvic life.

The truth is, you can live without asanas and still meditate and live a completely peaceful, yogic life…

But I’ve NEVER regretted class.
I’ve never regretted a handstand, backbend, spinal twist.
I’ve only ever come out of my practice- no how big or small- feeling refreshed, rejuvenated and grateful for the time to slow down and tune in with my body and mind.

Here is another #5posesaday sequence to help you pause and reflect, and soak up some of the wonderful benefits that yoga asanas have to offer. If you need assistance with the poses, please email me to request a complementary Yoga & Meditation Guide.

5 asanas a day

Remember: Change starts with us.
If you want to live a world that is more peaceful; cultivate peace within yourself.
If you want to live a world where people are being more compassionate; be compassionate yourself.
Don’t expect from other’s what you’re not willing to cultivate/promote within yourself.
Together we can make a difference. But we need to start with our selves.

And don’t forget, if you want support and accountability, we are all here to help you in our private, women’s only FB group. I hope to connect with you there!

Well wishes,

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Transform Your Life

 

5 Yoga Poses a Day

Hello and welcome to my blog!

I actually can’t quite believe that my first blog post is ACTUALLY happening. Managing a household & family, 4 small children, homeschooling, and looking after myself, I’m baffled that I manage to find time to run a business! As they say, where there is a will, there is a way.

I have been on quite the journey over the past 10 years. Recovering from mental illness and healing from Poly Cycstic Ovarian Syndrome was and has been an ongoing commitment. Recovering my health and vitality took healing on all levels- mentally, emotionally, physically and spiritually. So within my blog, you can expect to see info on all the elements of healing that have played a role in my successful recovery. From Ayurveda, to fitness, yoga & meditation, nutrition, as well as mindset and coaching. All these things continue to play a huge positive role in my life, and I have seen the lives of many of my clients change dramatically, just by slowly implementing this essentially ‘holistic’ way of life.

One of the best things that EVER happened to me, and continues to happen, is falling in love with Yoga. And by that I mean Yoga in it’s most complete sense- the lifestyle, the asana’s, the love and compassion, Ayurveda, kirtan, meditation, relationships, and ultimately, our relationship with the Supreme… Yoga is everything we need to live an AMAZING life of HAPPINESS and FULFILLMENT.

To celebrate love; and to celebrate yoga, every Monday I’ll be posting a yoga-asana sequence based on a simple and achievable 5 poses a day program. The main focus of the program is to integrate yoga-asana’s into our lives in a way that does not add pressure, nor feel like a ‘should’. 5 poses, to be held for a minimum of 5 breaths each, can take anywhere from 5-30 mins, based on how you’re feeling on the day, and how much time you have available.

5 poses breaks down the need for a spare 60-90mins to be able to practice.

5 poses allows us to open, soften and stretch regularly without taking away from our day.

5 poses gives us TIME and SPACE internally and externally.

Here is Day One of the program (right click and save to download it for easy reference; or Pin it). You can practice the same sequence over and over throughout the week- moving deeper into each pose, spending more time discovering different elements of the pose. Or you can make up your own sequences. If you’d like a copy of my free Yoga and Meditation guide, please email me at admin@samanthadoyle.com and I’ll send you a copy. It has some great sequences and a full break down of over 50 yoga poses to help get your started in your practice.

5 poses per day

I hope you enjoy practicing the sequence and I look forward to catching up with you about it in our women’s only support group!

And remember to NEVER under estimate your impact on the world.
You are making an impact already. The magnitude and effect of that impact is based on your level of effort and awareness of what’s possible.
So how are you impacting other’s and your environment? (Food for thought 😉 )

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Transform Your Life