A Note from Tracy: Research has proven that yoga is an effective tool to help overcome depression, according to this article recently published in Harvard Health Publishing. Effective yoga practices to combat depression are about more than movement, however. Breath and meditation are equally, if not more, important. In this series of articles, I will share six practices (some movement, some breath, and some meditation) from my series Overcoming Depression with Yoga. Enjoy!
For many of my clients, depression manifests as a lack of energy. Energy to do the things they love, energy to take care of themselves, energy to live life to the fullest. We all have things in our life that deplete our energy, just like the holes that drain water from the bucket above. Some energy drains can be avoided, but others are necessary, such as earning an income and taking care of loved ones. If we can’t plug the holes, then we need to find ways to refill our bucket.
The meditation below is designed to help you reconnect with with everything that brings you joy.
Filling Your Energy Bucket Meditation:
- Sit comfortably with your spine erect and the crown of your head floating up to the ceiling, or lie comfortably in a position that allows you to be pain free yet still alert.
- Allow your eyes to close and notice your breath—without intentionally trying to change it. Bring your attention to the sensation of movement in your belly as you breathe in and out.
- After 2 – 3 minutes or whenever you feel ready, begin imagining all the things in life that fill you with energy and give you joy. Examples include people you love, hobbies or things you enjoy doing, gifts of nature, or even something as simple as a hot bath or time spent resting in front of a crackling fire. Let these thoughts float through your awareness as images, sensations, smells, or whatever else has the most power for you.
- If your mind wanders to anything else, bring it back to the sensation of the breath. Then re-focus your attention on all of the things in life that bring you energy and joy.
- After several minutes ask yourself one or both of the following questions:
- How I can increase energy and foster joy and community in my life?
- What actions can I take to invite more energy, joy, and gratitude into my daily life?
- When you become distracted by other thoughts, simply notice those thoughts without frustration. Then, with your next inhale, invite your attention to the above questions again.
- Continue this meditation for 10 minutes or longer if you’d like.
Enjoy, and if you’re interested in learning more about my private yoga therapy practice and yoga teacher training, visit my website at http://svanayogaseattle.com/
My newest Downward Dog Mystery, Pre-Meditated Murder is available now in e-book and paper back copies everywhere! Check this link for some local ideas. http://tracyweberauthor.com/buy_premeditated.html