With so much going on, it’s not surprising that many of us feel exhausted or, sometimes, just plain burnt out. In a given 24 hour period it can almost feel that there are forces at work to rob us of our free time, energy, and relaxation. Over the years, I have searched on a personal level to try to find ways to keep my life as stress-free as possible. I may not have been successful at this every day, but I have come across some practices that have helped me along the way.

First I realized that scheduling was vital. It helped me take back control over Time. Second, trying to eat as healthy as possible. Third, drinking water to flush out the toxins from my system. And last, but not least, I have discovered, like some of you out there, the benefits of Yoga.

I know, you say the word “Yoga” to some people, and you get rolling eyes and chuckling, while others come forward and say, “Good for you.” I myself am no expert on Yoga, but please allow me to explain what it has done for me. When I first started, I thought, like many other forms of exercise, that Yoga would become repetitious, mechanical, and boring. In the beginning, I would lay on the floor, follow the exercises, and just go through the motions. Then after a few days I began to feel different. I found myself becoming more relaxed and more limber. My breathing improved. I suddenly realized that for me, Yoga is about stretching the body and relieving it of stress. These were all the benefits at the beginning. I started feeling less stressful in my back, it became easier to run up and down stairs, and I had more energy throughout the day. I was surprised how quickly all of this happened. Fifteen minutes each morning had given me all this. Now, I do it twice a day.

After one month, something extraordinary began to occur. I began to understand what other people who do Yoga were talking about. The same thing started happening to me. This is really hard to explain, but let me give it a shot anyway. When you practice Yoga, after a period of time the cumulative effects start to occur. The mind, the body, and the soul start to become centered. Your whole sense of being becomes synchronized. Your body starts showing you how much you are stressed out on a daily basis, and where you carry that stress. Because of that awareness, you can take care of it. For me, Yoga, combined with prayer and meditation, are potent forces to fight off stress and negativity. The benefits of Yoga improve with time. Age becomes a friend, not an enemy.
Whenever I find something that has helped me, I always try to pass it along, because really, that’s what life is all about. A relay race where one passes the baton to another. Thoughts that help are meant to be shared.

To your health,
love, Jennifer Avalon
© 2002 Jennifer Avalon

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