Since the beginning of my yoga journey I’ve noted consciously doing some involuntary actions less…we generally have little control over our emotions which tend to rule our personalities…one thing I know for sure is that my emotions, mostly the negative, especially crying whether it’s been out of anger, frustration or sadness have become easily manageable.
As a continuation from my previous blog posts about ‘letting go’ and ‘withdrawal of the senses’ there is another word which, if not understood, could certainly be labelled as selfish, that is ‘detachment’. Not only from subtle influences like emotions but also from objects or even people around us.
For people that are overly emotional and let their hearts rule their decisions becoming more aware of being able to detach your feelings and emotions from your actions may be an impossible accomplishment. But with understanding could definitely be used as a helpful tool for positive action and direction in your life, not to mention inner healing and peace.
I find myself thinking a lot more before acting impulsively and therefore a lot less guilty as a result.
Here are just a few practical examples yoga can help you achieve detachment:
- Clear the mind of any thoughts that do not serve you during your yoga practice with the intention of being in a constant meditative state.
- When doing an intense or restricting pose remind yourself to relax internally so that your mind does not conjure feelings of claustrophobia, doubt or fear which can lead to a panic reaction, or feelings of disappointment or failure.
- Do intense poses for an extended period of time and then allow yourself to relax in shavasana (lying on your front or back) giving the mind, body and breath time to recover, and then repeat.
- Remind yourself to relax your face from all expression especially the lips, neck and shoulders.
- Keep reaffirming yourself that you are capable of reaching your goals in yoga asanas (postures and poses) – practice makes perfect.
- Breathe! Find a soothing breathing rhythm that can become a natural adaptation to the involuntary breathing you do on a daily basis and be aware of that breath from time to time during the course of the day. Use this as a subtle reminder to reaffirm your thoughts and actions.
- Cultivate a love of self and enjoy time alone.
- Be sure that what you are practicing as detachment is an honest process and not one of denial which can isolate you and do more damage than good.
Detachment can be likened to an invisible force field around oneself, a protective spiritual barrier. It may be recognized by others as being aloof or uninterested but only because there are other processes at work which cannot be seen or understood by anyone but you. *
Also noteworthy is that once we detach from subtle feelings and emotions we can begin to work on any addictions which may hinder ones progress. From coffee and smoking to depression and drugs addictions are linked to a constant need to increase or decrease ones feelings and emotions. Another reason why yoga is so beneficial as a rehabilitative therapy.
*Article by Sally Kempton on the processes of detachment: http://www.yogajournal.com/wisdom/1241