When I first started practicing yoga, I went into it thinking it was going to be some weird hippy-dippy practice that I would get bored doing. Oh, how was I so wrong? (Well, maybe not about the hippy-dippy part – it can be – but definitely about the boring part!) It has benefited my life in so many ways, and I am so thankful for that day I first decided to step onto my mat. I’m not going to write a novel here about how cool yoga is, but here are just 10 of the ways yoga has improved my life.

me

Yoga helps me…

1. Take a step back. I sometimes try to go full-force with every little thing I do. Yoga has taught me I can just take a chill pill and calm the heck down. 

2. Reduce anxiety. When I’m stressed, anxious, or overwhelmed, I go to my mat. It is my safe place – my place just for me. 

3. Increase my flexibility. We all know it’s important to keep those muscles loose. What better way than to stretch out than to ease your body into cool yoga poses, am I right?

yoga pose

4. Ease my depression. Yoga has helped my depression tremendously. The good vibes in my yoga studio and my favorite instructor always have the ability to bring a smile to my face. 

5. Strengthen my mind-body connection. If I’m tired, I don’t make myself bend into a certain pose. I can stop. I can breathe. It is my practice, my practice for me – not anyone else! 

6. Become more mindful. When I step onto my mat, I don’t think about everything that happened right before that moment. I don’t think about what will happen after I step off my mat. I think about the here and the now. 

7. Breathe more deeply. I use yogic breathing techniques outside of my practice, too. It helps to calm me down when I’m super stressed or anxious. 

8. Challenge myself. Working my way into new poses and learning to quiet my mind has challenged me and helped me in ways I never thought I could. 

9. Work from within. Not every workout has to leave you drenched in sweat. Sometimes we get so caught up in that mindset that we forget how working out should really be working within our minds. Sure, yoga is great for your body. But it also helps you grow far more than just some toned arms, ya feel me? 

10. Love myself more. Yeah I know, cheesy. But yoga has taught me to love and appreciate my body a whole lot more than I ever thought I would be able to. 

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About The Author

Alyssa is a sophomore at Stonehill college. She could eat a sweet potato everyday and spends too much money on nut butter. A yogi, semi-gym rat and health nut, but also a huge believer in balance. She talks a lot about mental health and a healthy lifestyle on her blog blissful-lyss.com.

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