Is a daily practice important? Ask any professional athlete or musician and they’ll probably tell you that they need to cultivate their art in order to perform their best. Ask a gardener, a painter or a yoga teacher, and they’ll probably tell you that it’s the best way for them to maintain a steady connection with their soul.
My life changed for the better once I committed to having a daily practice. Don’t get me wrong, its no get out of jail free card, I still need to be a responsible daughter, sister, friend, partner and teacher. I don’t get any extra brownie points for getting up early and meditating daily. But I do have the opportunity to take responsibility for myself and for my actions everyday.
In Sanskrit, an ancient language that many yogic texts and scriptures are written in, a language that is said to hold a high vibration, there is a specific word that describes what I do. It’s called a ‘sadhana’ and the literal translation is a conscious daily spiritual practice.
In Kundalini Yoga, the idea behind a sadhana is that we choose a practice or a meditation that is designed specifically to enhance the strengths that we want to build on, or to remove the blocks that are getting in the way of our happiness, our health and wellbeing.
After a 1:1 balance session we also set time aside to program our body’s cellular memory with the affirmations and ideas that our combined spoken word and breath pattern. This helps us to integrate our new habits into our everyday reality.
We rest, but do we recharge? We stop, but do we integrate what we have learned? We see people, but do we build on our relationships?
Because we process so much in our sleep, a morning meditation is one of the best ways to start the day so that we are clear, centred and focused. My morning routine starts early before the rest of the world has arisen. Long before I switch my computer on and respond to emails, texts and messages.
Most of us that live in the western world have manifested lives that are incredibly busy. We are often too time poor to see our family and friends and more importantly too busy to have time for ourselves. For many, there aren’t enough hours in the day to process what we are exposed to through technology and our relationships with people.
A personal practice is a beautiful way for us to describe what we do everyday. It gives us the understanding to know that it is a practice. We won’t always get it right. It won’t always be perfect, but it will always open up a dialogue between our body, heart, mind and soul if we learn to listen.
A daily practice not only helps me maintain a commitment to myself and my goals, it also teaches me to take responsibility for my actions and all the aspects of my life that I want to change. It honours the calling of my soul so that I set the time to be quiet, to be still and to listen to what my heart desires and take the time to reflect on what my mind yearns to change in my life.
On the mornings when I feel clear and have momentum, my daily practice is what gives me the energy to be productive during my day. It’s the drive behind my momentum for my goals, my work and the quality of my life. For me, the vehicle is yoga, for a close friend of mine it’s her time to paint and for one of my students it’s his time to surf. What does your daily practice consist of? What do you need to do everyday, in order to fill your soul cup up, so that whatever you extend to others is a natural extension of you, and doesn’t deplete you?