Yoga is the perfect means to get your creative juices flowing when you are looking for inspiration and an injection of passion into your life.
We all know that yoga offers a lot of benefits. It is of course a great means to stay physically active and healthy by toning and stretching the body. It’s medicine for the mind, helping it stay calm, clear and focused and beneficial for emotional wellbeing too. To add to all of this, yoga is also an ideal way to get your creative energy flowing.
If you’re thinking, “that’s all well and good, but, I’m not the creative type,” think again. We all have a creative centre and yoga can help unleash this power. Creativity doesn’t have to mean being a great artist, musician or writer – rather it’s a way of thinking, a means of expression or an energy we can tap into to give us inspiration, passion and excitement in our lives.
We are all creative souls, just look at how we think and problem solve – sure some of us may take an analytical approach but there is also creativity involved. Creativity is at work when we cook, we dance, we love, we dream. It’s at play when we retell a good yarn to friends or when we put together our outfits together for the day. It’s just how you choose to approach it.
But for some of us, getting caught up in our day to day lives and the stressors it can create, has an inhibiting effect on our creativity and causes it to be cut off or pushed to the side. The good news is there are lots of ways we can tap into and unleash our creativity through yoga.
The practice of yoga in it’s entirely offers an ideal space to cultivate creative energy. In yoga and meditation, the aim is to shift our focus away from the external and to look deep within ourselves. When we withdraw the senses, quieten and clear the mind and look inside, inspiration can jump out! When we free ourselves from the prisons of the past and the worries of the future, we allow ourselves to be completely present. Yoga delves deep and in the moment, when the body, mind and spirit are in harmony, the creative mind can flourish.
So if you are suffering from a creative block or are just looking for inspiration, take a break from what you are doing and dust off your yoga mat now!
If you are new to yoga, try some simple stretches or sit and focus on the breath. Close the eyes and simply become aware of every inhalation and every exhalation. Try to inhale to the count of four and exhale to the count of six. Allow the breath to be full, slow and steady. When the mind becomes distracted, slowly bring your focus back to the breath each time. The aim here is to give you a point of focus so you can stop the chatter of the mind and find calm and clarity.
For the more advanced yogi, have some fun! Try out a new flowing sequence or a posture you haven’t perfected yet. Giving yourself a new challenge and a break from the norm, will get your blood pumping and creative juices flowing. Inversions, backbends and balancing poses in particular are known for their invigorating and dynamic effects and require total focus and concentration.
Once you’ve finished practice, ease yourself back into your writing, music, art or any other activity. Through yoga, a fresh mind offers clarity, inspiration and makes room for new ways of thinking to tackle whatever task you face. And remember, just because you might not be technically creative, doesn’t mean you don’t have this energy within you. So, try out some yoga postures today and let your creative side shine through!
Veronica is a yoga teacher and freelance writer based in Sydney. She has been practicing yoga for 11 years and trained in India, the home of yoga. She also works in communications and marketing for a international development and aid agency. Visit http://www.alotusinmud.com