Deep rest (and better sleep, too!)
Yoga nidra is a sleep-based guided meditation that uses your body’s natural sleep mechanism to go into a deeply restorative state of healing. There is nothing required but to lie down and listen. In today’s busy times, we may find it hard to stop – there is always more to do, and even our relaxation time can be full of activity, thereby missing out on the opportunity to truly rest. But our bodies and minds require the reboot that rest offers, a chance to clear the input of the day, make necessary repairs, and be ready to run at optimal efficiency.
One of the beautiful benefits of yoga nidra is that not only do you get to rest during the meditation, your brain is being reminded how to go into its natural sleep state. So if you find that you have difficulty winding down at the end of the day or often don’t feel well rested even after a full night’s sleep, you are likely to find an improvement in your ability to fall asleep and sleep well. When we can greet each day feeling truly refreshed and revitalized, we can offer the best of ourselves to whatever the day brings.
A quick search online will bring up a wealth of recorded yoga nidra meditations to listen to at home. You will also find yoga nidra classes offered throughout your area at yoga studios and wellness centers. Yoga nidra is gaining popularity in hospitals to assist with healing and recovery; in support groups for addiction, depression, and PTSD; in schools to help students manage stress; among high-powered executives and professional athletes wanting to perform at their best.
Yoga nidra is not just for yogis anymore!
Try some Yoga Nidra!
There is nothing quite like a live class, but my daily practice is mostly done listening to recorded meditations. This makes it possible to have my yoga nidra nap anytime, anywhere, whenever the opportunity arises. Even a short 15 minute meditation on your lunch break can make a tremendous difference in the energy and focus you have to give to the rest of your day.
Here are a few of my favorite free online yoga nidra meditations:
- Healing Chakra Chorus, led by Divine Sleep Yoga Nidra® creator Jennifer Reis
- I AM Yoga Nidra: Journey Through the Chakras, led by Kamini Desai
- iRest Yoga Nidra 20 Min Practice, led by Dr. Richard Miller, PhD
- Daring to Rest meditations, led by Karen Brody (and check out her book, Daring to Rest)