Monday, November 11, 2013

Healing the Solar Plexus Chakra

By concentrating your attention on healing your solar plexus chakra, you can overcome shyness. You can make your voice heard. You can express yourself  freely. You can boldly take on new challenges. Above your navel and just below your sternum is your solar plexus chakra, the center of the energy associated with the ego. This is the source of personal power, self-belief and self-worth.
The Solar Plexus Chakra symbol
Your solar plexus chakra is activated:
  • anytime you muster the courage to do something that scares you
  • anytime you speak up for yourself
  • anytime you exert your willpower and self-control
You’ll notice that in these situations, your energy is high, your posture tall and commanding and your voice firm.
Look around you at the people who are successful: they stand tall, speak with conviction and strength and look others straight in the eye. Their personal power is strong and they are comfortable using it! Personal power does not mean power over others; it means self-mastery – the ability to master your thoughts and emotions, overcome any fear and take appropriate action in any situation.
When your solar plexus chakra is blocked, life becomes a series of disappointments and frustrations. People with a weak solar plexus chakra see themselves as victims. They pessimistically walk with their heads down, put up with poor treatment and they have low expectations and aspirations. They are shy and rarely take the leadership role – but are quick to sarcastically put the leaders down!
How can you overcome your shyness or lack of self-confidence, or temper your over-compensatory behavior?
Healing this chakra requires you to work on your self-confidence. One very effective approach is to set goals that challenge you a little and excite you a lot, and take small, consistent steps to achievement. You’ll gain confidence as you see progress!
What to do if your solar plexus is blocked? Practice smiling more, better posture, and slowly you will gain confidence!
Work on the “fake it ‘til you make it” approach. This is not bravado or overcompensation; it’s simply acting the part even before you embody the part.
Do this by:
  • dressing sharp
  • walking faster
  • standing taller
  • speaking up when you need to
  • taking care of yourself with exercise and nutrition
  • looking people in the eye
  • smiling more
  • using meditation to develop the self-control you need to overcome fear and do what you know you need to do in order to advance.
Over time, these behaviors will influence your solar plexus chakra and you’ll be on an upward spiral of true self-confidence.
However, avoid singing your own praises because this can lead to overcompensation and a tendency to praise yourself without backing your words up with results.
If you’re already on the other end of the spectrum and you overcompensate for your feelings of inadequacy, know that a blocked solar plexus chakra can cause you to behave in potentially selfish and harmful ways. Whenever you feel the urge to boast about your accomplishments in front of others, STOP. Be humble. Let your achievements speak for you – and if you haven’t achieved anything worth speaking about, take on a goal that excites and motivates you, and start taking steps toward it.

Other ways to open the solar plexus chakra:

  • seek out new experiences and wisdom to expand your repertoire of knowledge and skills; and then quietly use those new tools to express yourself and achieve your goals
  • dance
  • practice yoga
  • eat yellow foods such as bananas, corn, grains and drink herbal teas
  • wear yellow and introduce yellow into your home environment
  • encourage yourself to step out of your comfort zone by changing your daily routine. By removing yourself from your comfort zone, your natural resource of confidence and the energy of self belief will be coaxed out of you, and you will have little choice but to be yourself and to focus on action – which will give you even more confidence.
The key to a healthy, open solar plexus chakra is finding a balance between making sure that your voice is heard without being pushed aside, but without overpowering other people with false displays of confidence. In other words, don’t be a pushover but don’t be domineering or boastful, either. Let your actions speak for themselves; and find the courage to take action by focusing on your strengths and taking small proactive steps.
When your third chakra is open, you are assertive without being unfair or overbearing, you are respected without having to demand it, you are not crushed by failures or mistakes, you recognize your positive attributes and you are satisfied, happy and peaceful.

Are your chakras opened or closed?

Monday, November 4, 2013

Heart Chakra - Love Energy

The heart chakra is the part of the energy body associated with the human emotional center and particularly the emotion of love and relationships. The heart is seen the gateway to the soul and the seat of emotions. Capable of producing deep love, joy and inner peace, it can also be the source of great pain and emotional suffering.
Feeling loved and loving others is vitally important to maintaining a happy mental, spiritual and physical existence; we all need love, for life without love is an empty existence. That includes self-love. However, too many people are living lives of lonely, painful despair. The cause of loneliness and heartbreak can be traced back to a blocked heart chakra.
The energy of the heart chakra is depicted as a deep emerald green color that ties us to all living things. Green is associated with new life and natural surroundings – it is tranquil, yet energized, soothing yet vibrant. The energy produced by the heart chakra allows us to have meaningful relationships and to feel empathy, compassion, passion, forgiveness and caring for others.
The Sanskrit word for the heart chakra is Anahata, meaning an “unstruck sound”. This  metaphor refers to the potential of the heart to produce a beautiful music or resonance when we find the person or people, or even ourselves, that can ‘strike’ it. However, the "Anahata" is also all about choice. The heart chakra must be ‘struck’ through your own choice, the choice to share your love with others instead of guarding it or refusing to let it openly flow- as people often do if they have been hurt.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Detox Yoga- Poses to cleanse your body

How detoxification works
There are three main systems of the body that play a crucial role in the elimination of wastes — circulatory, digestive and lymph. The circulatory system pumps blood throughout the body, delivering oxygen to and carrying waste products away from cells. The digestive system processes the food we eat, separating nutrients from waste and eliminating anything the body doesn’t need. And the lymphatic system collects intracellular fluid from throughout the body and transports it to the lymph nodes where anything harmful (such as bacteria or other contaminants) can be removed before the lymphatic fluid is returned to the bloodstream.
It’s a robust system that works well on its own. But in order to help your body keep up with the heavy demands our stressful lives and nutrient-poor modern diet place on these systems, the trick is to give your body an assist so it can perform its natural detoxing function. And yoga is an ideal companion.
How yoga facilitates cleansing
Most forms of vigorous exercise stimulate all three systems of elimination to some extent, thereby helping the body in its quest to cleanse and detox. But yoga, with its focus on systematically stretching and compressing every part of the body, is particularly well-suited to keeping the waste-removal departments of the body functioning well.
In a well-rounded yoga practice, every part of the body is pushed, pulled, twisted, turned and upended. This facilitates the removal of waste products such as carbon dioxide, lactic acid and lymphatic fluid from the deep tissues and extremities of the body that a run or a bike ride just don’t reach."
Controlled breathing also plays an important role in promoting detoxification. “We have as many bad habits in breathing as we do in every other area of our lives. Sitting with poor posture impedes the lungs from inflating fully, and our chronic state of low-grade stress often leads to a clenched diaphragm—the parachute-shaped muscle at the bottom of the rib cage that assists in breathing. As a result, we don’t take in as much life-sustaining oxygen when we inhale, or expel as much of the potentially hazardous carbon dioxide when we exhale.
Controlled breathing helps clear out carbon dioxide from the lung tissue, stimulates the organs of digestion and can, over time, retrain the diaphragm to move freely. And when the diaphragm moves with its natural fluidity, the abdominal organs are massaged and the lungs are fully emptied with every breath — not just the ones you take on the yoga mat.
Clear mind, clear body
In addition to its physical benefits, yoga aids in mental detox as well. “When we’re in a state of stress, fear or depression, that attitude creates a sensation in the body. Doing yoga helps purge toxic thoughts by teaching you to move your awareness away from the chaos of the mind and back to the present moment. That practice is not a basic component of other fitness pursuits.”
As a result, a regular yoga practice helps you eliminate the tangible and intangible toxins that could otherwise keep you from feeling your best. Here are three poses that are particularly suited to aiding detoxification or to help you kick off a natural body cleanse.
Yoga poses to detoxify the body
Marichiyasana 3 (Marichi's Twist) 

Detox benefits: Squeezes the abdominal organs and stimulates digestion and elimination.
Sit up tall with your legs straight. Bend your right knee and bring the sole of your right foot to the floor just in front of your right sitting bone. Rest your right hand on the floor behind your back for support.
Reach your left hand up so strongly that your ribcage lifts up. Rotate your torso to the right and bring your left elbow to the outside of your right knee. Stay for 5 deep breaths, gradually and gently using the sensation of your left elbow pressing into to your right leg to encourage your torso to twist further to the right.
Either look behind you, over your right shoulder or straight ahead, depending on what feels best to your neck. Repeat on the other side.

Downward Dog

Detox benefits: Getting the heart higher than the head reverses the pull of gravity and aids in the circulation of blood and lymph. Also gently tones the abdomen, which stimulates digestion.
Start on your hands and knees with the entire surface of your palms pressing into the floor and your toes tucked under. Slowly lift the knees and straighten the legs. Press equally into the hands and feet and lift your sitting bones up as you move the thighs back. Allow the head to hang. Stay for 5–10 deep breaths.
Legs Up On The Wall

Detox benefits: Encourages circulation of blood and lymph from the feet and legs. Bathes the abdomen in fresh blood, stimulating the digestive organs. Soothes the nervous system, allowing your body to shift its attention from warding off stress to daily bodily functions, including detox.

Sit in front of a wall with your right hip and shoulder touching the wall. Bend your knees and roll onto your left side, so your feet and seat are touching the wall. Roll onto your back and extend your legs so that they rest on the wall. Either rest your hands on your belly or let your arms lie on the floor, palms up. Stay for at least 10 deep breaths.

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