November is the month of Thanksgiving. Many Americans hold Thanksgiving as their favorite holiday of the year. Add me to the list. It is a day when we may communally express our gratitude for what we have, our contentment with who we are, and our thanks for where we are in life.
November is also the middle of autumn and a time to prepare for the full holiday season. Here are a few tips that could make this your best November.
- Take a few slow breaths each day to acknowledge the things for which you are grateful. Consider some intangibles: good health, love, joy, freedom, friends, personal integrity, the beauty in the world around you. With these things, be contented (santosa).
- Do something spontaneous to help a needy person, particularly over the Thanksgiving weekend.
- Practice the yogic principle of non-greed (aparigraha). Think about evolving away from a sense of not having enough time, money or space, toward a feeling of having just the right amount. You might be amazed at the liberation!
- With a busy season approaching, you may want to adapt your asana and practices to preserve energy as well as to offer gratitude. Consider practicing the following poses daily.
CHILD’S POSE WITH PRAYER HANDS
From a Table position on hands and knees, bring the big toes to touch, separate the knees wider than the rib cage and gently drop the forehead down. Extend your arms toward the front of the mat and into Prayer Position. Keeping the elbows rooted, bend the elbows, bringing the hands toward your upper back. Variation: For a deeper stretch across the shoulders and triceps, rest the upper arms on yoga blocks.
|Child’s Pose||Child’s Pose with Blocks|
This heart-opening version of Savasana encourages the feeling of contentment and gratitude for all that you have. Use blankets or other props to support the torso and head. Let the shoulders and arms drape off the edge of the blankets with palms facing upward in a receptive attitude.
Fine tune your position for complete comfort, and then relax, breathe quietly and enjoy the sensation of an open, thankful heart.
Have a peaceful month.