This is not the article I had planned for today but it is the one I need to write.
It’s about pain. Specifically chronic pain. I have struggled with chronic pain for half of my life and yet I am a yogini.
Before I start sharing about my yoga practice, I need to get this out of the way. Pushing yourself and having big expectations of how your exercise will change you are completely contrary to that. I know. I have tried and failed many times before I learned this ?
The thing with chronic pain and yoga is to move, or not, with the pain. On days when the levels are low, I am able to do a full, half hour-ish session without fail.
On days where the pain is moderate, I adjust my yoga to become gentler, simple, less straining.
And on days with heavy pain I do something else. I visualize. I imagine myself on the mat and doing the asana from my full session. I slow down my breathing and let my session play through my mind.
Even though I lay in bed, letting my yoga session play in my head calms me down, and even makes me smile despite the pain.
The added benefit is that ever since I have started doing this, the pain flare days have shortened. Where in the past flares could last for weeks, it now is a matter of days.
And that is the greatest blessing of yoga I can imagine!