The Covid-19 pandemic has caused us to shift and bend our lifestyles indefinitely. Between lockdowns and learning how to balance work and home life, we have been presented with situations that are anything but normal. We now seem to be finding ourselves in a constant state of flux. The continuous uncertainty has led to restless and sleepless nights for many of us.
A study by Sleep Medicine, found that since the start of the pandemic last year there has been elevated rates of clinically significant insomnia (20%), acute stress (15.8%), anxiety (18.5%), and depression (24.5%). During these times of uncertainty, many people have found support and deep rest in an ancient technique – yoga nidra for sleep.
A Method Old As Time
Yoga finds its origin in India nearly 5,000 years ago. The practice of yoga is a life-long journey of moving toward mastery of the physical, mental, and spiritual body.
In its modern-day use, yoga is becoming more than just a form of exercise. With today’s hustle and bustle, everyone is looking for a break, a rest, a deep breath, a great sigh of relief, a gentle nurturing of their most tender inner self and quite simply; a good night’s sleep.
Why You Need Sleep
While a Healthy diet and exercise are the most widely promoted factors for maintaining a healthy lifestyle, sleep is quickly being recognised as the most important factor of all. It is a basic human need, without it we simply cannot survive.The importance of a good night’s rest cannot be overlooked. Quality sleep:
- Enhances Cognitive Performance
- Many scientists make a strong argument that sleep plays a vital role in how much information your brain can retain. In your awakened state prior sleep helps you with the acquisition, consolidation, and recalling of information.
- Boosts Memory
- The information we take in throughout the day can only be secured in our long term memory depot via a good night’s rest
- Reduces Stress and Anxiety
- In the past year, most of us have taken on additional stress and anxiety in some shape or form, often resulting in restless nights. While the body is built to respond to stress in small doses from time to time, the ongoing large stressors typical in our current workplaces and lifestyles are having detrimental effects. Obtaining proper sleep can help us better manage and significantly lessen the burden of the stress we encounter in life.
- Builds Tolerance and Stabilizes Moods
- Let’s be honest we all get a little cranky when we don’t sleep well. Quality sleep is known to be the very best natural mood stabilizer.
- Improves Your Physical Health
- Once your body is better rested you automatically become a better version of yourself! Type 2 diabetes, kidney disease, and several forms of cancer have been negatively linked with inadequate sleep.
In spite of these facts, not everyone is getting the rest they require to cope with today’s stress-inducing environments. And even those who are sleeping are not necessarily getting good quality rest.
That can change.
How To Achieve Deep Sleep Via Yoga Nidra
You may have heard about yoga nidra but are not entirely sure of what it really is. Yoga nidra [or yogic sleep] is a simple form of meditation where one’s mind is guided to move from point to point throughout the body becoming aware of every sensory experience. Yoga nidra is probably the best-known technique to induce complete physical, mental, and emotional relaxation.
Yoga nidra allows one to achieve a deep state of relaxation which in turn leads to a peaceful night’s rest. It can also help us to become aware of the thinking patterns that hold us hostage to bad habits and behaviours. By learning to disentangle ourselves from these thoughts we move toward our higher consciousness. The Yoga Nidra instructor guides you in this process through a very specific script.
Let’s take a look.
Yoga Nidra Scripts
Although there is no right or wrong way to meditate, the Yoga Nidra script provides a very specific process for entering quickly into a state of stillness. The instructor designs these scripts to include the core components of Yoga Nidra all wrapped in their own creative style. Instructors can specifically design these sessions around a client’s needs. The sessions can be either live, pre-recorded, solo, or in a group. The duration and the focus can vary depending on the needs of the client or group.
Getting on Track
A scientifically proven pathway to better sleep and countless other benefits, Yoga Nidra will be a friend to your health and wellbeing. Whether you use yoga nidra to overcome insomnia, a power nap or energy boost, or to improve sleep quality – Integral Tracks have you covered. We understand that achieving a peaceful state of mind can be a challenge during these difficult times. We offer a timezone friendly schedule to ensure that you can build the all-important, healthy sleep habits that you need.
Access a free guided Yoga Nidra from one of our co-founders (Mel) and follow her on Insight Timer.