So, you are among the yoga believers. You see how these exercises help you relax, fine-tune your mind and body, and let your thoughts wander after a hard day at work. And then, your yoga instructor brings up an idea of writing a diary…
Wait! What? A diary for my yoga practice?
Yes, you read that right. You might not associate yoga with writing a journal. However, as professionals state, taking notes of your progress as well as keeping track of all your thoughts and ideas as you get better at yoga is extremely helpful, both mentally and physically.
And if you still have doubts about this, then read on. You are about to learn something truly wonderful about the effects of having a diary of your yoga practice.
1. Track Your Results and Achievements
At the end of the class, you need to take some time and analyze how this class helped you breathe deeper, relax, and stretch. No matter what it is that you are proud of by the end of the class, write it down. This will keep you motivated and encouraged. After all, one of the major focuses of yoga training is affirmation. And tracking your progress is the way to do it.
2. Write Down How You Breathe
Analyze your breathing during the session and take notes of how it went. Did you breathe deep enough? Were there things that distracted you from the proper breathing in the process? If so, then take notes to pay attention to those things next time you exercise.
3. Explain Your Emotions
No need to carry your worries and fears around with you. If you want to get rid of that burden, yoga is the answer. Make sure you are making the most out of yoga for your emotional awareness by keeping track of your emotions in a diary. Analyze your emotions and see which ones you cannot really get rid of. Learn how to express them with your body during yoga classes.
4. Build Accountability
Having a diary to write about your daily yoga training can be helpful as it will hold yourself accountable and will motivate you to continue exercising even if you do not feel like it.
Be sure to keep track of dates. Write a date next to the place where you leave comments about the training. It will help you see how well you are doing and how often you skip exercises. In other words, you are training your self-discipline. And it works like a muscle: the more you train it, the stronger it becomes.
5. Identify New Goals
There is some magic in writing things down, no matter whether you are composing a thesis statement or tracking your current progress. You see what you have already achieved, analyze how much you have grown in some areas, and decide that it is time for you to move on and set new goals. But to realize it, you need to see those numbers.
Michael Hyatt, in his article on goals and New Year’s resolutions, states that around 42% of people who wrote their goals down, were at least 42% more likely to achieve them in the nearest time.
Sounds impressive, don’t you think? So, keep your goals on paper.
6. Be Vulnerable
It is okay to admit that you cannot do some things or that you cannot conquer some fears immediately. Talk about that in your diary after your yoga session and you will see how dealing with such emotions gets easier.
Becoming more mature emotionally is possible and it is much less painful if you keep a journal. Understanding your own feelings, fears, and struggles is easier when you keep track of them on paper. So, build up your emotional maturity by being open and vulnerable to share what you feel.
7. Strengthen Mindfulness
In the fast-paced world we live in, we hardly ever have time to stop and mindfully enjoy the moment. That is why having a journal to help you stay focused is crucial.
Just try to be present in the moment without worries about the future and frustrations about the past. Take your pen and describe exactly how you felt during the yoga class to make the most out of it.
8. Mention Flaws
Is there something you need to practice more? Can your yoga teacher help you do it right the next time? If so, then write it down. Because if you don’t, chances are you will forget about it altogether. And you definitely do not want to miss out on this one!
9. Write Down Your Lessons
Did you have a breakthrough or an insight of some kind? Did you master some move you could not really do before? Is there a better and more effective way to practice yoga? If you answered yes, then write these answers down and save them as a list of lessons you want to remember and polish during the next class.
10. Point out the Applications
Finally, you need to write how what you have learned during the class about yourself and your abilities can be actually applied outside the studio. What insights can effectively change your life on a day-to-day basis? You should not leave those insights for the yoga classes only, but rather make sure to apply them in real life.
As you already know, yoga represents a chance to grow physically and emotionally by taking your time to stretch, calm down, and organize your thoughts. And even though the asanas alone have a positive effect already, when combined with journaling, they can take your yoga practice to a brand-new level.
Journaling does not have to be a fancy thing to do, but I recommend to choose a nice notebook you will want to write in and stay organized. And good luck on this journey!
Want to start using a diary on a retreat? Go on a Kundalini and writing yoga holiday!
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