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(BPT) – Suffering from a case of “the blahs”?

The holidays are over. Our get-up-and-go is more of a sit-there-and-stay. Those resolutions? Maybe not working out so much. The days are shorter. We’re not getting as much sun. We’re isolated, we’re cold, we’re crabby.

Now what?

Got a case of winter doldrums? Yoga and meditation can help.

Recent studies have shown that Kundalini Yoga and meditation reduce stress and anxiety, helping to combat doldrums, blues, dumps, lows, and bummers.

Here’s the best part: It’s easy enough that anyone can do it, anywhere, any time. Which, when you’re feeling unmotivated, can be crucial.

3HO, an organization that promotes Kundalini Yoga and meditation worldwide, has instructions for dozens of “kriyas,” which are sets of practices — mainly simple breath control techniques and gentle postures — that are practiced to achieve a specific outcome.

The meditation described below is designed to lift your spirits by lowering the cortisol overproduced by your body when you’re under stress. According to Harvard Health Publishing, within just a week or two of regular meditation, you should see a noticeable change in your mood and stress level.

Start here.

Posture: Sit in a comfortable position with a straight spine. Lace your fingers together so that your fingertips find the space between the fingers of your opposite hand. Now extend your index fingers, press them together, and straighten them. Your thumbs should cross each other comfortably. Hold your hands at chest level.

Focus: Keep your eyes open. Focus on the tip of your nose.

Mantra: Chant Wahe Guru Wahe Jio. Don’t stress about the pronunciation. Imagine the word Wha coming from your bellybutton; the word Hey coming from your chest; and the word Guru coming from your lips. Follow the same sequence and rhythm for Wahe Jio.

Time: Continue for 3 minutes. (You can work up to 31 minutes, if you want to.)

End: Inhale and hold. Focus on the sound of the mantra. Exhale. Inhale, hold, and allow yourself to feel the source of your sadness. Exhale, and let it go.

Inhale, hold, and feel the preciousness of life.

Exhale, and let it go. Relax. That’s it!

It’s not hard to be kind to ourselves.

We should all do it more often.

For more information on Kundalini Yoga and other kriyas, visit 3HO.org. The winter blues should not be confused with Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). If you think you may be suffering from SAD, please talk to a medical professional for advice. If you or someone you know are having suicidal thoughts or feelings, call the National Suicide Hotline at 1-800-784-2433. 


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