Autumn – time to pause!

This autumn; pause, catch your breath and allow yourself a bit of time for clarity and perspective.

With a nip in the air and the leaves starting to fall – it’s important we regcognise this time of change; both inside us and out in nature. If we are awareful, this time of year can be very beneficial to us and our journey forward. As the earth begins to cool and the nights draw in, how about reaching inward to the warmth inside?

In Dru Yoga we often talk of ‘Dru Points’ or places of internal and eternal stillness that we can encounter through our yoga and meditation practice. It is where we find ourselves in perfect balance and harmony with ourselves, our loved ones and the world around us. Dru Points are a  powerful way to stay connected to your inner self – even when things are a little rough round the edges.

By pausing for a few breaths each day and taking just a few minutes to anchor yourself in reality, it is also less easy for people or situations to knock you off balance. How you sit or stand to do this is really important as your posture effects not just your physical body, but also your emotions. If your spine is tall,straight and strong – those are exactly the qualities you will feel inside too.

Practical Tip – Vertical Alignment Breath

Tadasana
Stand tall; ideally out in nature. Iif this is not possible, sit comfortably with your spine straight – not slouched! Close your eyes and begin to take your awareness inwards towards your physical body. Take your awareness down to the feet, where they are in contact with the earth or floor beneath you. Feel a balance between the left and right feet and the toes and heels. Feel perfectly centered and balanced.

Draw the awareness up the legs feeling a wave of strength moving upward into the hips. Engage your core muscles by gently pulling in at the lower abdomen and up from the pelvic floor muscles. Feel that wave moving up the spine, to the top of the head. Feel as though the crown is being lifted slightly, so that the rest of the body feels light. The shoulders and gluteals are relaxed.

Vertical Alignment Breath
Once more focus at the feet. This time take you awareness down into the earth beneath you. See if you can tune in to the trees around you the soft earth, the leaves on the ground. Then spread your awareness outward so you feel the hills around you, the fields, rivers and lakes. From here take the focus downward again into the solid strength of the earth. You may be able to touch a feeling of light and warmth from the earth.

With a conscious in breath, draw warmth, strength and light up from the earth to the souls of the feet and up through the legs to the heart. At the heart allow yourself to pause and as you breathe out continue the journey of the breath up to the crown of the head. Breathe naturally as you focus here. Become aware of the air and spaciousness around you. The birds in the air, the clouds, the wind and the blue sky. Move the awareness upward as in your mind’s eye you see the sky above you filled with stars, solar systems and planets. You can feel the warmth from our sun. With the next in breath draw that warmth, spaciousness and openness down to the crown of the head, and down through the chest into the heart once again. Pause here as the focus starts to move down again to the earth.

Once you have identified your visualisations of Earth and Sky, you can move through this process a little quicker. From the heart take a breath in and then breathe out and push the awareness down into the earth. Connect with the earth and with the in breath raise the awareness again to the heart. With the next out breath, push the awareness upward from the heart to the crown and beyond into the space above you pause in that expansion and again with the next in breath draw those qualities back down to the heart. Repeat several times. When you are ready to complete; rest your awareness at the heart centre for a few breaths. Touch the deep stillness within.

This technique is very powerful for helping you to establish your place on this earth. You are walking firmly anchored to the world around you, but, as Gandhi said, “your head is crowned with the stars”. At the heart is a place of balance – this is your centre. Your equilibrium. Come to rest here daily and you will feel calm and peace pervade everything you do.

Enjoy the peaceful earth this autumn!

by Anouschka Dack
Dru Yoga Teacher trainer and holistic therapist in Manchester

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Dru Meditation – stress buster!

Dru Meditation is a fantastic tool to get you relaxed, emotionally balanced and looking at life from a place of stillness and focus.

Meditation is not about sitting in uncomfortable positions for hours on end… its about enjoying a bit of stillness and peace in a life that is moving very fast indeed. This week I had the emmense privilege to film one of our senior Dru Meditation teacher trainers, and original founders of Dru, Chris Barrington, for our Dru Yoga Online Studio. Every two weeks we bring out new Dru classes on a variety of subjects, like ‘Stress Less’ and ‘Trim and Fit’, but from the 1st of May Chris will be teaching a series of 3 fantastic Dru Meditation classes and teaching techniques that are unique
to the online studio!

As I was camera woman, set design, tea maker and producer of sorts… I was able to sit in and watch, listen and learn from one of the best in the field! Even the understanding of how and why to sit correctly, either in a chair or on the floor was a real eye opener. So often in my meditation I find myself restless or uncomfortable, but by simply learning to tilt the pelvis forward a fraction and lift through the sternum, means I’ve been enjoying my meditation even more this week!

So in this blog, I wanted to share a simple stress busting technique with you just to get you ready and prepared for Chris’ classes on the 1st May…

Relax for a few moments and focus on your breathing, watching the natural rhythm of each inhalation and exhalation.

Imagine a situation in your life that needs healing. Create an image of that situation in front of you, as if it were on a video screen. As you breathe in, draw some of the stress of the situation into your heart and immediately send it upwards and out of the top of your head as you breathe out. Feel that above your head is a region of golden light in which you have full access to your healing potential. Imagine the stress entering this region and visualise the situation being completely healed.

On an in-breath, draw this new situation into your heart and breathe it out into the scene in front of you, bringing peace and a good solution to that situation. See smiles of relief on the faces of everyone concerned.
Repeat steps 2-5 until you feel relaxed, calm and full of joy.

“Thanks to my regular Dru practice, I am able to meet challenges at work head on. I am now actually enjoying delivering presentations to important clients and closing a deal, whereas before I sometimes felt like crumbling!” – H.Y., architectural designer

Wishing you a stress free April and Happy Meditating!
Anouschka Dack

Dru Yoga teacher trainer and holistic therapist, Manchester
P.s. Meditation Online? Join our Dru Meditation Online Course to get 9 months of powerful meditation techniques and tools to learn how to relax at will, boost your brain power, become more successful in your relationships and achieve your goals!

Go to www.drumeditation.com now to find out more…

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