The focus of this morning's yoga class (courtesy of YogaGlo) was creativity. The instructor encouraged body movements that mimicked the flow and ease of water. Gliding through the poses, I could indeed feel an opening to that meditative, creative channel that gives birth to inspiration.
After the practice, I began to think about how, despite not being much of a swimmer, I am drawn to water. I love to gaze at it, paddle on it, soak and float in it. Like many people, I get some of my best ideas in the shower. Water brings a sense of peace and stillness to my body, settling my busy monkey mind and connecting me to my truth and intuition.
In the Primal Health Coach certification, I learned that water therapy (like floating) activates the parasympathetic nervous system. The heart rate is slowed, digestion improves, the body relaxes. Water activities help balance our sympathetic nervous system-"fight or flight"- and can encourage meditative states. In fact, the US Marine Corp uses surfing as a therapy for PTSD. In a recent Huffington Post article, marine biologist Wallace Nichols describes how water rests the brains, induces a meditative state, reduces stress, encourages imagination and reflection, and connects us to a sense of awe and wonder.
My takeaway: even if you don't fancy yourself a swimmer or water sport enthusiast, you can enjoy the restorative, creative-inducing advantages of water. Take a bath, float in a pool, walk around a lake, sit on the beach and watch the waves.
♥ How do you enjoy water? ♥