Let's for a moment forget about the esoteric quest for balance in our hearts and minds. If we are talking balance in our bodies, there are very concrete things we can do to improve. When standing in Tadasana or Mountain Pose we are mindful of the alignment of the spine. The naval draws in and up toward the spine. Shoulders draw away from the ears and we find stability by connecting with our breath. The same is true in balance poses. We ground down into all four corners of the foot that is standing. Keeping a microbend (slight bend) in the knee helps to stabilize the lower half of the body. One of the most critical things we can do to improve balance is to draw the belly button in toward the spine. This is because it activates the core. A strong core stabilizes the entire body and apart from the workings of the inner ear, is the greatest factor in achieving balance. When I first started working with balance poses the suggestion to draw the naval in was incredibly effective. Additionally, finding a drishti or focal point was revolutionary. Poses that I often fall out of become much more attainable when I am engaging the core while simultaneously focusing on a fixed point in front of me. As I continue to practice and find balance in my physical body, balance at the energetic level naturally follows. The drishti is actually meant to be an inward point of focus. So much so that we can maintain balance in challenging postures even with eyes closed. It is this internal balance that will yield great results in your life off the mat.
With all of the demands placed on us today, there has never been a time where finding balance in our lives has been more important. Particularly as a woman, wife and mother I am constantly pulled in what seems like an endless array of different directions. Planning out meals, managing school work and extra curricular schedules for my oldest, working, finances, keeping the house clean, staying fit, staying in touch with friends and family, making my spouse a priority, serving in my community, caring for a baby, devotional time, loving my puppy. These are all incredibly meaningful tasks, but without the proper balance the joy gets sucked right out of them. I have come to learn that the airplane analogy really does apply to life on the ground. You have to put your own mask on first, before you can save anyone else. I have to make my own peace, health and well-being a priority. Even when my schedule leaves no room for it. Even when I have a list of a thousand reasons why I shouldn't. When I take the time to find the still place inside myself, I am able to be more present for the ones I love. I am able to be more intentional in the way I make decisions and complete tasks. Finding balance is essential to doing life well in the 21st century. Allow me the honor of helping you find balance in your life by offering a 1/2 hour complimentary yoga and lifestyle consultation. Sign up here theuptightyogi.weebly.com/contact.html& include the keyword consultation in the comments. Blessing of love and light to you and yours.