Over the years I have heard many people use the word ‘decompressing’ to describe time they have spent relaxing, letting go, or unwinding, generally after an effortful period of work.

I unintentionally spent a few minutes yesterday evening simply sitting in my quiet home in silence; after a little time I realized that I quite literally felt decompression happening within me. I could feel the crowding of people and voices around me perceptibly vanishing after days of constant interaction and activity. I could feel my skin, ears, and eyes relax and soften. I could feel my senses becoming curious again after days of filtering and even blocking out some sensory information due to overload. I could feel my breath moving in a simple and regular pattern. I could focus on one thought at a time, calmly and quietly, as well as notice the space between them. I felt peaceful and light and content within. This is the harmony and wholeness of body, breath, mind, and heart that I aim to teach through yoga.

Practicing physical yoga on a mat is one excellent and deliberate way to help decompress the tangible and intangible layers of ourselves. Sitting in stillness on the couch in the evening is one excellent way to do so inadvertently! Include both intentional and inadvertent kinds of practice in your life; intentional practice teaches you to perceive and to savour the surprise moments of harmony within.

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