The DEN Meditation now offers Yoga Nidra classes Sunday through Wednesday. Led by our wondrous instructor, Hilary Jackendoff, this session is sure to leave you feeling calmer than before.
Yoga Nidra isn’t another type of yoga you’ve never heard of. This yogic sleep is a state of consciousness that leaves the body in complete relaxation while lying in shavasana… kind of like being in the process of falling asleep, but for 45 minutes. Yoga Nidra is different from other forms of meditation because it does not require a single focus to center on.
Perfect for those who are new to meditation, Yoga Nidra is a guided process lead by an instructor that includes verbal instructions for practitioners to follow. The goal is for participants to becomes increasingly aware of their inner world through the sense of sound alone, lying in complete stillness. This practice has been linked to decreased stress and increased relaxation (obviously!) and helps relieve feelings of anxiety.
The Yoga Journal offers 10 steps for a successful Yoga Nidra practice:
1. Connect to Your Heartfelt Desire
Bring to mind your heart’s deepest desire—something that you want more than anything else in life.
2. Set an Intention
Reflect on your intention for your practice today. It might be to relax and rest, or to inquire into a particular sensation, emotion, or belief.
3. Find Your Inner Resource
Bring attention to your Inner Resource, a safe haven within your body where you experience feelings of security, well-being, and calm.
4. Scan Your Body
Gradually move your awareness through your body.
5. Become Aware of Your Breath
Sense the body breathing by itself.
6. Welcome Your Feelings
Without judging or trying to change anything, welcome the sensations (such as heaviness, tension, or warmth) and emotions (such as sadness, anger, or worry) that are present in your body and mind.
7. Witness Your Thoughts
Notice and welcome the thoughts, memories, and images that are present in your mind.
8. Experience Joy
Welcome sensations of joy, well-being, or bliss emanating from your heart or belly and spreading throughout your body and into the space around you.
9. Observe Your Self
Be aware of your sense of “I-ness,” or personality. Notice this sense of identity when you say “I’m hungry,” “I’m angry,” or “I’m happy.”
10. Reflect on Your Practice
As you complete your practice, reflect on the journey you’ve just taken.
And, to finish, come back to your surroundings by transitioning into your “waking life.” Whether it’s through small movements, focusing on the breath, or picturing the room you’re lying in with closed eyes, coming back slowly at your own pace, allows your body to reorient to your surroundings.
References and more information: