By Dr. Kathryn “Kat” Kilpatrick
As the New Year unfolds it's a perfect time to bring awareness to becoming a better human being. One of the ways that can be done is by addressing the question “how do I want people to feel in my presence?”
The energy and emotion you bring to the room, your posture, your expression, the tone of your voice, all affect personal interactions. The more comfortable you are with yourself, the more comfortable people around you will be.
Looking closely at your breath and posture are two ways to improve the interactions you have with the people around you.
The relationship of breath to empowered emotions
Your breathing is directly related to your emotions and each emotion creates specific breathing patterns. By understanding this dynamic you can change your emotions by changing your pattern of breathing.
Picture your breathing the last time you really became upset. Your breath typically becomes shallow and choppy. If pain was involved there’s often a tendency to hold your breath or breath in gasps.
The breath patterns that occur with emotions typically take place unconsciously. By bringing awareness to your pattern of breathing, and intentionally changing the pattern, you acquire a tool for taking charge of emotions.
If you’re anxious about a meeting where it’s important to leave a good impression, look closely at how you’re breathing as you go into the meeting. The unconscious breathing pattern associated with anxiety can be thoughtfully replaced with the pattern associated with relaxation and you’ll find yourself feeling more empowered.
A relaxed pattern of breathing is slower and deeper than the pattern associated with anxiety. By consciously adopting a slow and deep breathing pattern your interaction will change and the impression you leave behind will be dramatically different from that associated with an anxious interaction.
The relationship of posture to empowered emotions
Just as your breathing pattern relates to your emotion, the same is true for your posture.
Take a moment to assume the posture of what you picture of someone who is depressed, shy and insecure. How do you feel when taking on that posture? Do you feel vibrant or depressed?
Now take a moment to stand in the Superman stance. When you stand tall, legs spread slightly apart, chest up, hands on hips, are you feeling empowered?
It all begins with awareness
Posture and breathing are two important principles in the practice of Yoga. Bringing awareness to your posture and breathing throughout the day can be powerful tools for creating personal change in the New Year
1) like, appreciate, or understand
2) discover information after a search or investigation
3) bring out something that is hidden or has been stored for a long time
4) extract from the ground by breaking up and moving earth
The name for this yoga blog was inspired by the Rainer Maria Rilke’s quote:
“Dig into yourself for a deep answer.”
We live in the age of information. We have answers everywhere from Wikipedia, Google, You-tube and Trip Advisor. But as Rilke advises we must "dig" into ourselves for the "deep" answer. We may have to unearth a lot of obstacles before we discover our truths. But as yogis, we make the U-turn of awareness from the outside world to the inside world of thoughts, emotions and digging up conditioned patterns.
Our intention for this blog, is to help students with this process. As yogi’s, we are like archaeologists excavating tension and holding patterns within the body/mind.
Sri Sri Shankar writes, “I tell you, deep inside you is a fountain of bliss, a fountain of joy. Deep inside your core is truth, light, love. There is no guilt, there is no fear there. Psychologists, or most people have never looked deep enough.”
Writings about asana (postures) will be rare, as there is much already written about that. We will explore concepts relating to the other limbs of yoga and other avenues to help students dig deep.