Before we begin...
This set of practices is designed to fit into your life by making a big impact in a short span of time. In order to feel the full impact of your new transformative practice, take a few minutes right now and make some decisions. They're simple, so go with your gut - it's only 11 days! Then you'll have solid information to base your next step on.
- This series is designed as a morning practice. Morning yoga practice is ideally one of the very first things you do after rising. Some things you might want to do before yoga - these can become your triggers, things you associate with doing yoga:
- drink 24 ounces of water - one big go, from your bedside table, first thing (this one is a major super charger)
- make and pour a cup of coffee or tea - bring it to the mat with you (this one eases the transition)
- brush your teeth (this just feels good)
- put on yoga clothes (you can do it in your jammies if you want :)
- roll out your mat (mat optional)
- Block out 15 minutes of non-negotiable time for these 11 days. What time will this start each morning?
- What day will you begin?
- Decide if you'll practice to music, quiet or the sounds of your family waking.
- Gather some things you might need:
- Yoga mats are a great way to mark out your time and space. Rolling it out becomes a cue, and the space becomes your laboratory
- I recommend 2 yoga blocks, though not everyone will need them. They're useful for sitting on and for extending your arms in balance poses and forward folds.
- A yoga strap or a long scarf or belt - this will be helpful to connect your hands behind your back or reach you toe in certain poses.
- Eye pillow. You can substitute a folded wash cloth if you'd like. This is a really great way to sooth your nervous system; the light, even pressure on your eyes and forehead is a direct trigger for your relaxation response.
- Bolsters - 3-5 or about 3 feet thick compressed. You can purchase yoga bolsters or use things you have around the house: pillows, couch cushions and blankets are all useful for supporting your body in final rest pose and in restorative poses.
- Blanket. You'll use this in final rest pose. The light, even pressure over your entire body is another signal to your relaxation response, which will reduce cortisol and other stress hormones allowing you to focus better for the rest of the day.
- Put the yoga things you have gathered in one place, whether that's the corner of a room, a room all by itself or the narrow space between your bed and the wall. Yoga practice adapts. Don't worry, as you go you may decide on a better location, decide to make more space or even move it outside. Right now, just choose the best place you have available. You never know what you'll learn.