The Christmas Season is a time of giving. The end of the year in general, regardless of cultures or beliefs, is dedicated by most people to love and devotion. In the Vedic Traditions, one could say that it is a time where we choose to practice Bhakti Yoga, or yoga of love and devotion.
The last couple of weeks in my house have been focused on my family and friends. We have hosted visitors from out of town and delivered small tokens to show our appreciation. Either way, I can truly say that I am thankful for all they do for me or my family. Opening Holiday cards is a special reminder of all the cherished relationships in my life.
Getting ready for a new year
As the beginning of a New Year approaches, the focus turns to you. It is the time to start over, set new goals, and do things differently, or sometimes just do things better and smarter. Most of us like to look at the New Year as an opportunity to start over, erase the board and rewrite our story from scratch. You are still focused on love (love for yourself), but now you are also focused on action. In the practice of Karma Yoga, the yoga of action or selfless service, you become more aware of the choices you make as an individual and how they effect you or the people around you. In the New Year we want to improve our quality of life by being aware of our actions. Before setting your goals for 2015, I encourage you to take inventory how your decisions affect you and the people around you.
SMART Goals, focus on the R, – Realistic
New Years resolutions are one of the most common ways to set new goals in our lives. As we set these New Year goals, it is important to consider not only what is very important to us, but also choosing goals that are realistic and attainable. It is important to set goals that will bring you well being and keep you focused, not goals that will make you feel discouraged and ready to quit.
Setting Physical Goals
An exercise routine is usually at the top of everyone’s list. As you set an exercise goal, be realistic of how you will take on this new endeavor. Many will go full speed the first week of the month, then will be exhausted and sore after only one week, eventually quitting the exercise routine completely and not coming back for the rest of the year. Instead, my recommendation is to build from the ground up beginning with exercise three days a week. Start with something that you enjoy such as walking and light yoga. The purpose is to establish a foundation to build upon. Eventually, you will be able to build endurance, add short and long runs and longer sessions of yoga that really focus on strength. You can’t begin your exercise routine by running 3 miles the first day if you have never ran before, just as you would probably not take an entire class of Ashtanga yoga (A really hard advanced yoga) without taking any breaks if you have never tried yoga before. It is more beneficial and important to build your endurance, strength, flexibility, and most importantly, confidence! At Bliss Balance Health, I am challenging my students to commit to 21 days of Yoga in 2 months starting in January 2015, that is about 2 classes per week and something that everyone can build upon.
Setting Nutritional Goals
Healthy eating is another popular goal ranked near the top of most people’s lists. In my experience, a lot of people fail to maintain healthy eating habits because they set unrealistic goals and start diet plans that are difficult to maintain long term. While there are many diets that promise quick weight loss, most of them fail in sustaining the desired weight long term. Focus on your lifestyle or eating habits, then slowly shed the weight in a healthy and responsible manner. When you start a new diet or embark in a new lifestyle change, ask yourself this question; “Do I see myself following this plan 5 years from now?” If the answer is yes, great, take steps to initiate the lifestyle change. if the answer is no, maybe you should choose a a less dramatic diet change and find something that is more in line with your mind body type (Dosha).
At Bliss Balance Health my philosophy is to integrate whole foods into your diet that complement your specific Dosha. My process is one of bringing back foods that are made for us by nature, and phasing out processed foods. It is simply a way of reeducating oneself to eat things that we have forgotten about. One of my greatest pleasures as a Wellness Consultant is examining an individuals specific Dosha and prescribing foods that are best suited for that person. Revisiting past diet experiences, your relationship with food, your likes and dislikes, your lifestyle and then creating a plan that is customized for you are all part of the experience. Whether your goal is just to be healthier or loose unwanted extra weight, we can customize the perfect plan for you!
Setting Mindfulness Goals
A Mindfulness practice is also a wonderful way to reset your mind. The mind is a key component in the will and strength to stay with a lifestyle change. Meditation is a mindfulness practice that not only helps to reduce stress in the body as well as in the mind, but also helps you to stay present and connected to your needs and desires. I teach a meditation Practice called Primordial Sound Meditation. It is a meditation that has been practiced for thousands of years, that has been revitalized and brought to western cultures by Drs. Deepak Chopra and David Simon. Primordial Sound Meditation is a mantra based practice in which each individual has their own personalized mantra based on the time, date, and place of birth. I teach Primordial Sound worldwide via Skype or FaceTime. And available to teach in person in the Carolinas.
Whatever your new goals are, just remember to make attainable and nurturing choices. Your goals should bring you happiness and well being, not frustration and additional stress. Journaling your feelings and your daily accomplishments is a great way to check in with what is going on with yourself. Just be light and have fun! Well being is meant to be an enjoyable experience!
I wish you a wonderful New Year filled with light, peace, joy, and love!
Contact me if you are interested in learning how to meditate, have a nutritional consult, or to try a yoga class with me!
864 551 57 31