Prenatal Yoga Nidra: Sleep Your Way to a Positive Birth Experience

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Over  the summer I had the honour of taking two yoga trainings. The first one was my pre and postnatal certification and the second one was my Yoga Nidra certification. You can check out my article on Yoga Nidra here (unfortunately there are a couple typos and they misspelled my teacher’s name…Tanis). On Wednesday, I had the pleasure of mixing the two in my pre-registered Prenatal class. I created a birth-positive Nidra where the Sankalpa (a concise affirmative statement that one deeply desires usually starting with I AM) was centred around birth. Some examples were, “I trust in the process of birth”, “I am safe and fully supported”, “I am at peace”. I also took the women in my class on a creative visualization journey through their immanent labours.

When they came out of the Nidra, I had them write in journals I provided. We had an opportunity for discussion and not one of the women remembered me taking them through the creative visualization! I was astonished. What this meant was that the positive, creative visualization surrounding birth was assimilated on the sub-conscious level, much deeper than the conscious level. We will have to see how their births turn out in my mom & baby classes!

Even if there are no birth-specific Nidras to attend in your area, you can hold a positive intention for your birth. You can write it on a piece of paper and activate it by placing crystals around it or just put it in a frame and hang it in your bedroom so that you are surrounded by your positive intention when you go to sleep and wake up.

Prenatal Crystal Altar

Prenatal Crystal Altar

We cannot necessarily change the outcome of our birth experiences but we can relax our busy minds and often fear-based messages by holding positive intentions and trusting the unknown.

Namaste,

Samantha

Setting an Intention

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How often have you gone to a yoga class where the teacher asks you to set an intention for your practice? How often have you spend the whole time allotted to setting your intention wondering what your intention is? Usually, I tell my students, simply that it is their “why” for coming to their mats. However, it is so much more. Everything we do on our mats can be done with intention. Perhaps this day it is gentleness you seek, so you absolve to honour yourself and be gentle to yourself through you internal dialogue. Perhaps it is peace and presence you seek so you move through your practice with your inner drishti set on your breath. Intention is something you can also take off of your mat. Every morning you can set your intention before your feet hit the floor. I should note that an intention isn’t the same as a wish. Jumping out of your bed and setting your intention to win the lottery probably isn’t going to yield the results you hope for. It is beyond that into something you set for yourself. An intention to breathe through the tensions of the day and invite peace and gratitude into whatever you do can have profound effects on how you move through the day.

Dr. Wayne Dyer wrote the book The Power of Intention. In it he highlights how we cannot divorce intention from the law of attraction. We must become what we wish to attract. He puts it beautifully in the video provided below:

When we sit down on our mats, hands in Anjali Mudra and we set our intention we are tapping into that infinite Divine intelligence that makes all things possible. That moment of silence is a gateway into creating our best life. What is your intention?

xo

Samantha

The Dentist and the Gayatri Mantra: How to Overcome Anxiety

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Today I went to the dentist. This is my fourth visit in 6 weeks. This is my second visit where I’ve had to have work done. Prior to finding a dentist suited to my highest good it had been approximately fifteen years since I had been to one. Those 15 years were spent in a state of complete avoidance hoping I would never have to go to one again. Teeth would constantly come up whenever I went to a healer and I could feel it intuitively besides. I finally went. I don’t know what made me go finally, but the courage came from a  place that meant healing. In fact, I won’t even refer to my dentist as such, I refer to her as a tooth healer. According to Chinese medicine we have meridians in our mouth that line up with all of the major organs of our body. The health of our mouths directly has an effect on the rest of our body.

Chart developed by Bobby & Kerrie Broe via behmnaturaldentistry.com

Chart developed by Bobby & Kerrie Broe via behmnaturaldentistry.com

This combined with the necessity there is for me to get my amalgam fillings out is where I find the strength to get many of my teeth worked on week by week. When I was a kid I would faint without fail in the waiting room while my mom paid. I felt awful every time. I felt powerless and like there was something wrong with me because my teeth were constantly getting cavities. As soon as I could make my own decisions, I never went back. However, we can never truly run from these types of things can we. Now, I have to undergo a lot more work than I would have had I been going all along. Still, I can see why I didn’t. The reason? I needed yoga teacher training. I would never be able to weather the anxiety I am up against if I hadn’t learned pranayama techniques and gotten in touch with the power of Mantra. The first three visits I focused on my breath. The third visit I also developed a fear of choking. I think this comes from that feeling of powerlessness I had when I was a kid. My throat closes up and my mind goes there as my frozen tongue struggles amid the giant obstacle course in my mouth. I can feel my tongue scrunch to the back of my throat so not to let any foreign liquid get past it’s gate. It is here that my heart rate rises and all of a sudden I feel as if I need to swallow double time. Anxiety. Panic.

So today, I didn’t want to go there again. I took two Fluorite crystals with me (good for dental work) and the Gayatri Mantra, the miracle mantra. I was already anxious when I went today. I could feel my heart pounding in my chest so I picked a spot on the ceiling and I recited the Gayatri Mantra in my head over and over. Whenever my awareness returned to the present moment and focused in on my mouth I could feel my blood pressure rising again and I would return to the mantra. Soon after, I couldn’t feel my heart pounding any longer.

Namaste,

Samantha