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Ahimsa Yama - Creating Less Harm

There are 10 Yamas and 10 Niyamas - yogic take on human values and ethical practices that help us reach our full potential for personal, spiritual, and professional growth, and to liberate us from the repetitive cycle of suffering. When we live in contradiction to the highest values, when we avoid taking the higher road -  we get stuck in a rat. 

This month, we are implementing Ahimsa Yama into our lives - the daily practice of doing less harm, and self-inquiry to see which our unconscious patterns that cause it. Leaning into awareness, we can adopt smarter habits to take better care of our health, each other and our planet Earth collectively. We will build more sustainable movement habits, thinking longevity with better postural alignment using the props in classes.  Join us in looking into our own false beliefs about self-medicating, to reveal the stories we tell ourselves to make that self-harm acceptable.  With practice, we get to observe our behavior, the inner workings of our mind, how we relate to situations, what drives our reactions, and what fuels our addictions, resistance, rumination, and procrastination. Lets shine the light onto the obvious and not-so-obvious paths to creating less harm. 

7 Ways of Daily Ahimsa Practice:
 

  1. Addictions: what external substances (pills, vapes, plants, alcohol, sugar) do I abuse everyday? Addictions are always a hidden way of harm, and can only be conquered by TRUTH and ACCEPTANCE, followed by using professional help. Asking for help is the smartest and most loving thing we can do for ourselves, our loved ones, and our community. 

  2. Daily habits: let's stop driving and texting, scrolling and crossing the streets, moving too fast, having our hands full while walking downstairs, put firm limits on our APPs and TV, develop an earlier bedtime routine, dedicate an hour to spend outside, take a workout or meditation class to minimize our screen time.

  3. Let go of the victim mentality and stop blaming people for our distress, emotional or financial. Learning to take responsibility for any conflict, and apologizing with ease. This does not apply to aggressive and violent behavior - please stay safe and reach out for help whenever exposed to any violence.

  4. Forgive yourself and others 100% everyday. EVERYONE, EVERY DAY. This is a follow-up to taking honest action on steps 1-3.

  5. Environment: commit once and for all to never buy drinks in plastic bottles, and reduce or try to eliminate other single-use plastic daily use like shampoos, soaps, and food packaging. Buy food that is in season and comes from local sources as much as possible. Watch my VIDEO below with some zero-waste products that I love, and please join Caitlin myself for the International Ocean Film Festival April 12-14 >

  6. Community: being inclusive, respectful, honest & generous towards all. All our unhealthy relationships, competition, fear of each other, racism and the need to control one another create psychological trauma that contributes to all diseases, cancer, and immune dysfunction. Know that what we judge and conflict with only points us to the part of ourselves that needs work & healing.

  7. Relationships: following the Golden Rule, or the Law of Karma: our actions will always cause a consequence. If someone's done you 'wrong'  - contemplate when may you have unconsciously done that previously yourself. Treat others as you'd like to be treated. Assert your values with clear communication and boundaries, and do your part to act on them accordingly. 

What other ways I did not mention but would be your way to create less harm? Contemplate it this month and share it with us in classes! 

The material on my blog cannot be shared or quoted without my permission. Thank you for reading!

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How To Measure Our Stress and Self Control. Podcast Audio
27:41

How To Measure Our Stress and Self Control. Podcast Audio

The more anxious and stressed we are, the less we accomplish, the more fearful and irrational our behavior, the more lies we tell ourselves and our loved ones, and the more and more we disconnected from reality. What can help us to get out from perpetual self-destructive behavior is to look at our actions in ways we can actually measure - using science & numbers. In this Podcast episode, I share the research on HRV, stress, and one simple breathing exercise to increase our heart rate variability (HRV), lower blood pressure & anxiety, and not only improve cardiovascular and overall health, but also our mental clarity, willpower, and self-control. You'll also try my simple self-measuring check-in journaling tool to expose the real state of affairs on our habits, our mental, emotional, and physical health. Clinical Research Resources: 1. HRV and Stress. Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences, Boston University https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28478782/ 2. Autonomic Nervous System Dysfunction and Stress. Institute of Psychology, University of Graz, Graz, Austria. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32854795/ 3. Heart Rate Variability, Sleep Quality, and Depression in the Context of Chronic Stress. Department of Psychology, Concordia University, Montréal, Canada. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32525208/ Join our Daily 25-Minute Live (Zoom) Morning Selfcare Habit www.glowyogasf.com/product-page/month-of-live-group-coaching-healthy-habit-development
Breathwork for Sleep & Anxiety. Podcast Audio
16:11

Breathwork for Sleep & Anxiety. Podcast Audio

An invitation to explore visualization with the breathwork to improve concentration, and our ability to re-route our mind from the external environment into the breathing, our internal steady rhythm. I recommend practicing this daily and keeping it in your toolbox when you feel scattered, anxious, unproductive, worried, angry, and cannot sleep. I notice more and more people take substances to help with insomnia, sleeping problems, and anxiety and I want to let you know that anything we 'swallow' is just a bandaid, another dependency we create that doesn't solve our underlying problem, which is a lack of evening mental hygiene. According to the National Sleep Foundation, 1 in 4 Americans take some type of medication every year to help them sleep. However, sleep specialists do not have any evidence for medications that can cure insomnia. Cognitive therapy helps people sleep better. 10 Sleep Insufficiency Facts from US National Sleep Foundation: 1 😴 Falling asleep in less than 5 minutes could signal an unhealthy level of sleepiness. Almost half of adults say they feel sleepy during the day at least 3 days per week (low-quality sleep). 2😴 More than 50% of Americans lose sleep due to stress or anxiety. 3😴 Around 75% of adults with depression suffer from insomnia. 4😴 More than 90% of people with PTSD have been found to have insomnia. 5😴 3 Hours of exercise a week reduces daytime sleepiness and increase concentration. 6😴 According to the National Sleep Foundation, 1 in 4 Americans take prescription medication to help them sleep. However, sleeping pills do not cure insomnia. 7😴 Sleeping specialists now focus more on cognitive therapy lessons for patients to help them sleep better. 8😴 Yoga helps with quality sleep by reducing stress and anxiety which is the cause of low-quality sleep. 9😴 Drinking alcohol has been found to decrease sleep quality by 39.2% 10😴 Poor sleep is one of the major contributing factors to deaths in car accidents. This breathwork can also be used anytime during the day too to get our minds out of racing and chasing and into calm and clarity. It is different from any 'Night Time Stories' as this is an actual practice of gentle breathing technique to create physiological shifts in our brain, hormones, and nervous system, a gentle way to tuck our mind to bed. The breathing exercises I share have helped me overcome anxiety, insomnia, horror dreams, and scattered mind. This is my regular practice. To measure and track your sleep quality I recommend wristbands and rings without a screen.  I love measuring my sleep - helps prioritize my rest and self-honoring evening choices. A great book to read about sleep is 'Why We Sleep'. My Breathwork Book for the Anxious Mind: 10 Days to Clarity & Calm https://www.glowyogasf.com/product-page/breathwork-book-for-anxiety Sleep well, Natasha sustainable selfcare advocate

SPIRITUAL RESOURCES I LISTEN TO:

 

  1. Adyashanti recordings - he has many recorded sanghas I like listening to on my walks >

  2. The Untethered Soul by Michael Singer (constantly, on repeat  - it's a lifelong reminder) >

  3. The Book of Awakening by Mark Nepo. I read it in print in the mornings -contemplative meditations to start my day with >

  4. Tantra Illuminated: The Philosophy, History, and Practice of a Timeless Tradition. by Christopher Wallis >

  5. The Spiritual Psychology teacher Michelle Chalfant's Adult Chair Podcast >

  6. Weekly recordings from the Spirit Rock The Heart Wisdom Podcast of Jack Kornfield >

WHAT CLASSES DOES GLOW OFFER

 

At Glow, we teach yoga for all ages as a holistic 8-Limb practice, preserving the richness of its ancient philosophy. Every month we focus on a particular subject which you can see in our Blog. We offer a thoughtful variety of classes: Flow (Strengthening Vinyasa), as well as Yin-Restorative, Meditation+Pranayama, SoundBaths,  Pre/Post-Natal Yoga, 360Barre, Deep Stretch & Self-Massage classes. Please take a look at our current in-person schedule  > 

ENJOY OUR WEEKENDS WITH WELLNESS EXPERIENCES

 

Your life is now. Here. In the city. Make it more meaningful, enjoy it, and do something different. We are bringing a variety of holistic leaders and healers to educate, unwind, nurture our spirit, and entertain our curiosity every weekend > 

Sending you love, health and peace,

Natasha & Glowing Team

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