Feeling Anxious?

There is a simple yoga technique that is restorative and that calms and nurtures the adrenal glands, which are always involved in this experience we call anxiety. It is called “Legs Up The Wall.”  It also calms hot flashes for those of you in menopause.

Place a yoga bolster or thick folded blanket (natural fibers like cotton and wool will hold the shape better) at the base of a wall. With your hips up on the support, extend your legs up and rest them against the wall. Check to see that your upper back, shoulders, and head are centered. Place your arms slightly away from the body with your palms up. Close your eyes (an eye bag helps calm the mind) and focus on your breath. Breath slowly and softly, letting the breath flow naturally.

**It is very important to bring your legs down slowly and gently by folding the knees to the chest and rolling onto your side. Rolling to the right is easier on your heart. This slow release will keep your heart rate from increasing too quickly, which will undo what you have accomplished.**

I would recommend soft lighting in a quiet room. Relaxing music is helpful for some people. If you are not accustomed to inversions, set a timer for 5 or 10 minutes the first few times you do this. If you do not become lightheaded, build up to 20 minutes. This can be done more than once a day. It is most effective if you enter the position at the earliest signs of becoming anxious.

Obviously this will not remove the cause of your anxious feelings (unless they are due to fatigued or hyper-sensitive adrenal glands) but it will support your body in nurturing the adrenals through increased blood flow to the area. It will also calm everything down so that you can more clearly deal with what is unfolding in your life. Please be patient with yourself during anxious, challenging times and know that you can create peace in your life if you find what works for you and be faithful in your practice.

Love and nurture yourself, dear hearts. Aum shanti.

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