Yoga is Self Improvement

After five thousand years of written documentation, Yoga may well be the oldest self-improvement system that ever existed. We don't know what Yoga knowledge may have been lost before man started to record it. In the time period beyond 5,000 years a fair amount of knowledge would have been passed on by word of mouth, and as a result, some of it would be missing.

There are many different types of Yoga, but all of them contribute to mankind's self-improvement. So, mankind has been a work in progress for thousands of years and has organized systems to constantly improve. Let's look at some Yogic principles that are often recognized as "modern" self-improvements.

Activate your mind and body together through daily Yoga practice. The mind is more powerful than the sum of its thoughts and it must be controlled. The mind that is allowed to wander usually produces random and unproductive thought.

In varying degrees, most styles of Yoga tie the physical postures, proper breathing, and focused concentration, together, in one single session. This constant bonding of mind and body, creates inner harmony. This in turn, results in a productive mind-set. This gives the average Yoga student an advantage in productivity, organizational skills, creativity, and self-preservation.

You can enhance positive energy with daily Yoga practice. After each Yoga session, many students commonly mention how good they feel. Yoga classes, or Yoga sessions, give the practitioner a chance to discard negative feelings, worries, tension, and stress. This gives the average Yoga student a simple way to prioritize life's daily problems.

As a result of this, the Yoga student is able to set and prioritize goals. Whether it is a serious goal or a whim, ideas that produce seeds of thought become reality, especially when followed by action. This formula will produce even more bursts of positive energy within the mind, resulting in a productive and positively charged mind-set.

Yoga students should be taught to identify, and when possible, remove negative energy from within the mind. Negative thinking is contagious and should be purged or quarantined, just like a disease. Identify those people who have it. If possible help them, but if not, avoid or isolate them. Negative thinking produces nothing of value and contributes to self-destruction. Therefore, you should learn to identify or leave negative surroundings that will stifle your self-improvement efforts.

Finally, listen to your heart and this will tell you if a decision is right or wrong. Some people call it a "gut feeling," but you can feel it, "in your heart," if a decision is morally correct, and know, if you can live with your actions.

Paul Jerard is a co-owner and the director of Yoga teacher training at: Aura Wellness Center, in North Providence, RI. He has been a certified Master Yoga teacher since 1995. He is a master instructor of martial arts, with multiple Black Belts, four martial arts teaching credentials, and was recently inducted into the USA Martial Arts Hall of Fame. He teaches Yoga, martial arts, and fitness to children, adults, and seniors in the greater Providence area. Recently he wrote: Is Running a Yoga Business Right for You? For Yoga students, who may be considering a new career as a Yoga teacher. ml

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