We all know there are numerous mental, physical and spiritual benefits of yoga. It helps us feel more relaxed, slow down, connect with our breath and make us more grounded among dozens of other benefits all the way down to a cellular level.
Many of us feel like we should be doing it more, but how can we make it part of our busy lives? As teachers, we often hear the sentence ‘I love yoga, I just don’t have the time for it.’
Well today, we’re here to give you some tips to help you build the habit of daily practice and make yoga a regular part of your life without feeling like it’s a chore.
How to build a new habit of regular yoga practice
Here are our favourite tips for building your yoga practice, let us know if you have any we should add to the list!
1. Think about your time more consciously
One of the main reasons we don’t roll our mat out to practice is because we think we don’t have enough time. But you DO have time - your practice doesn’t need to last long.
Don’t put pressure on yourself! Your practice doesn’t need to be a full hour, carefully constructed sequence! Just 10 minutes of breathing and stretching can make a whole world of difference.
Who doesn’t have 10 minutes in a day? You probably scroll on your phone for 10 minutes or spend 10 minutes at least watching something on a screen.
The way we value time and how we spend it can be so skewed! Try to think about how you prioritise your time and the value you can get from different activities that take the same amount of time…
Keep that in mind next time you’re making excuses not to practice.
2. Schedule the time in your calendar
If we just have it in our head that we want to do some yoga tomorrow, it’s pretty vague and not really a concrete goal.
Set a concrete goal for what you want to do and write it down in your calendar. This will make it more real and help remind you to do it when you’re in the middle of your busy day!
Say you want to start with 15 minutes a day of yoga, schedule it in at the same time daily.
Maybe that’s first thing during the morning or during your lunch break. If you always make it the same time, it will slowly start to become a thing you don’t even think about.
3. Create a habits calendar
Struggling to get started with a yoga habit? Try a 30-day challenge. There are dozens of apps and online programmes out there to help hold you accountable.
It doesn’t even have to be this complicated. Print out a calendar for the month, stick it on your wall and every time you practice, tick off the day.
This visual representation of your end goal (30 days of yoga) will help you stay motivated to keep going. It also acts as a gentle reminder that you want to do this.
4. Have an accountability buddy
Motivating yourself to practice yoga regularly can be a challenge, especially if you have a busy schedule. Get a friend to be your accountability buddy.
Whether you go to a class together or take an online class at the same time, your buddy will help you stay motivated with building a regular practice.
5. Limit your barriers to practice
When we want to build a new habit, we always find it easy to make excuses why we can’t do the set activity. Make it easy to practice!
Find an online teacher you like so you can learn some simple sequences.
Roll out your mat the night before so when you wake up in the morning there’s a physical reminder that you want to get on it.
Find a studio that’s near your house or work so it’s not an effort to make your way there. Book in classes the week ahead so that you have a set schedule of times you’ll practice.
6. Use classes or retreats to start building your yoga habit
Working with a teacher can help you start finding the way to a regular yoga practice. Whether you sign up for a regular yoga class, online course, or 30-day challenge, find something that works for you.
Retreats can also be a great way to intensify your yoga practice. You’ll practice every day and start to notice the difference in your body and mind. You won’t want to give up that feeling when you return home!
7. Be kind to yourself
If you set the goal to practice yoga 3 times a week, but miss a practice, don’t be mad at yourself about it.
Try not to set goals you know you won’t be able to achieve, that will demotivate you from the offset.
Some days you won’t feel up to practising, so be gentle and accept that you won’t practice. It’s no big deal!
Just start doing more yoga!
Want to know the biggest thing holding you back from a regular yoga practice? It’s not getting started practising at all.
Start slow, start gentle and slowly and surely, you’ll realise you can’t live without a regular yoga practice!
Want to kick-start your yoga journey? Join us at our retreat from 29th September - 4th October.