I was overweight, I had bad skin, and I was losing my hair.
None of my clothes fit me and my constant state of agitation was ruining my personal relationships.
I had just moved back to India from the United States and I was depressed, lethargic, and had a major case of writer’s block. Overall, my life was utterly imbalanced. This was my state of being when I first started my yoga practice.
Ten years later, I am at my ideal weight. I eat healthier and never fight to ward off cravings. It might sound bizarre, but I only crave what is good for my body, hair, and skin.
I have a healthy attitude toward my work. I work hard, but I am detached from the outcome of the results. Often, I find myself floating on a creative high. I have better control of my emotions and have realized that there is nothing in this world, or in this life, that should make me unhappy.
No matter how cliché it sounds, I’ve also realized that no matter what the circumstances, or how dreary the situation, life can truly be a joy every step of the way.
A simple yoga and meditation practice helped to trigger my transformation. My time spent at the Sivananda Ashram taught me that yoga is not just a physical practice, but a lifestyle, which is crucial to inculcate yoga into all aspects of our life.
The yogic life happens organically and naturally. And it begins with just 10 minutes a day.
The five essentials of yoga are:
1. Proper breath
2. Proper relaxation
3. Proper diet
4. Proper exercise
5. Positive thinking
These parts of the practice are intertwined. Each one leads to another and helps to nurture all five aspects.
While physically practicing yoga, we always focus on our breath. As we hold the asana, we learn how to relax deeply. Asanas work on our internal organs and hormone system, which in turn helps to control sugar cravings and unhealthy eating habits.
Physical practice—even a short one—leads us away from negative feelings of anger, anxiety, and fear toward positivity and joy. A good diet will come naturally.
When we truly practice yoga, we will only want to do what is best for our body and will stay away from things that don’t serve us well.