What is Yoga Nidra?
What is Yoga Nidra? I’ve been teaching Yoga Nidra classes and workshops for a couple of years now and have noticed the same questions cropping up time and time again.
So today, I’m going to answer the five most common questions I get about this incredible practice. This is just a little snippet – watch the video for all the juicy details!
What is Yoga Nidra?
Also known as yogic sleep, yoga nidra is one of the deepest forms of relaxation. It’s a combination of allowing your body to relax while you keep your mind awake. By doing this, you reach a profound state of relaxation – on all levels of your being.
I like to think of it as a kind of internal yoga. It’s practiced lying on your back in savasana with your eyes closed – and the hardest part is actually staying awake! It enables you to let go of all ingrained tension and stress.
But relaxation is just the beginning – yoga nidra can truly transform your life.
How can Yoga Nidra help you apart from relaxation?
During the practice, you access your subconscious mind. Your conscious mind – that part of you that tells you you can or cannot do something – that gets out of the way. By doing this you’re accessing your inner world. It’s like opening a door to your inner world.
This is the optimal setting to work on manifestation and to release the old, limited you.
What happens on a physical level during a Yoga Nidra session?
Well your breathing slows down. Your heart rate slows down. And your brain waves slow down as well.
So your nervous system is just unwinding itself and you’re allowing your body to just release all that pent up tension and stress.
What are the proven benefits of Yoga Nidra?
There are so many! But these are the main five:
– Yoga Nidra is deeply restorative. One hour of practice is said to be the equivalent of four hours of sleep.
– It helps you switch off your mind – that is why it’s been successfully used to treat insomnia.
– Studies show that it is very effective at increasing learning capacity and memory.
– Yoga Nidra increases creativity – new insights and ideas just drop in after a session.
– But the most powerful benefit of Yoga Nidra is the way it alters your unconscious programming.
How is Yoga Nidra is how is it different from meditation?
For starters, during Yoga Nidra you’re lying down in savasana and you’re trying to reach a state in between being awake and being asleep.
Whereas in meditation, typically you practice sitting – and you want your spine to be as erect as possible and you want to remain completely awake and alert the whole time.
That’s the starting point. But the main difference is that in a Yoga Nidra session you go through distinct stages and your focus is constantly shifting. This is a very different from meditation where you generally focus on one thing, such as your breath or mantra.
Yoga Nidra is a transformational practice that truly changed my life – and I know it can do the same for you.
I started practicing more than a decade ago in Thailand. At the time, I was very nervous speaking in front of other people. I wanted something to help me overcome this debilitating fear – my heart would pound so hard in my chest every time to I had to speak up. I couldn’t focus on anything other than what I was about to say and when I did speak, my voice came out feeble and shaky! It was really holding me back on a professional and personal level.
So I turned to yoga nidra and it truly transformed my life. I consistently used the sankalpa ‘I speak with confidence and clarity’ in my practice. My fear subsided and slowly but surely I felt comfortable and confident speaking up. So much so, that I went on to fulfil my dream of working as a television journalist.
But don’t take my word for it – try it for yourself!