I was overweight, I had bad skin and was losing 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 US 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 began my yoga practise.
Ten years later, I am at my ideal weight. I eat healthier and never fight to ward off cravings. It may sound bizarre but I only crave what is good for my body and my hair and my skin are not just under control, but fabulous. I have a healthy attitude towards my work – I work hard but am detached from the outcome of the results – and often I find myself floating on a creative high. I have better control over my emotions and have realized that there is nothing in this world, or in this life, that should make me unhappy. No matter how clichéd 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 practise helped trigger my transformation. My time spent at the Sivananda Ashram taught me that yoga is not just a physical practise but a lifestyle, and that it is crucial to inculcate yoga into all aspects of your life. The yogic life happens organically and naturally. And it begins with just 10 minutes a day.
Perhaps the simplest way to explain it all is through the five points of yoga.
The five essential points of yoga are:
1. Proper Breath
2. Proper Relaxation
3. Proper Diet
4. Proper Exercise
5. Positive Thinking
Th ese points are interlinked. Each one leads to the other, and practise of yoga helps nurture all fi ve. While physically practising yoga, you always focus on your breath. As you hold the asana, you learn how to relax deeply. Asanas work on your internal organs and hormone systems, which in turn helps control sugar cravings and unhealthy eating habits. Asana practise, even a short one, leads you away from negative feelings of anger, anxiety and fear towards positivity and joy. A good diet will come naturally. When you practise yoga, you will only want to do what is best for your body and will stay away from things that don’t serve you well.