The Subtle Art of Going Inward.
By: Anna Bek
Calling all go-getters and dream makers!
When was the last time you took an afternoon to do nothing?
In our society, hard work and constant pursuit of taking action and being productive is valued and appraised. But this can put a damper on our spirit, and can eventually lead to burn out. Illness begins when we forget our true nature and when we become so absorbed by our bodies, our to-do lists and our work schedules that we don’t take the time to go inward and realign with our true purpose.
This state of exhaustion and depletion can not only happen in our work lives, but in our personal lives when we expend all our energy outwardly in our relationships or businesses. Our minds, bodies and souls can start to feel scattered, numb and disharmonious when we don’t take the time to recharge and refill our wells of love, service and action. I mean...I know I am not alone in trying to do it all?
From my own experience traveling around the world, I have learned what makes me feel my best and how to keep my health up to par so that I can continue to give my best in my yoga and sound offerings, photography and creative projects along the way. It usually starts with taking inventory of my emotional state, my energy levels, sleep quality, and digestion. I now have to carve out space for myself with much more intention to squeeze in my own practice, to spend time alone in nature, to get in the sauna, do a face mask, check in on astro charts etc..
So, why is it so important to go inward?
💫When we rest the mind, we create the necessary space for the things we'd like to see in our lives.
💫We can tune into our emotional landscape and ask ourselves what our needs are and take action accordingly.
💫We can come back into our natural rhythm and creative magic.
💫We can satisfy the needs of our inner child by being present with the moment to let our curiosity run wild.
💫Take back the reins on our own life. Your unique human experience is truly the only thing we own. How do you choose to make use of it?
Are you convinced yet on hibernating for a while and getting comfy with yourself? It may make us uncomfortable to think about doing something alone, to put our to-dos aside....but like anything, you will create a new ritual for you to claim your time.
For me? I adore going on long swims in Punta Galera in Ibiza during summer, visiting the Korean Spa in Los Angeles during winter, the water temple in Ubud, and journaling while on the airplane. Sounds like I am a water baby, huh? A nightly shower. that's also my jam. These little habits are rituals or sacred routines that bring me back.
Here are some of my favorite ways to go inward and practice pratyahara - the fifth and often called the "forgotten" limb of the 8 Limbs of Yoga according to Patanjali. Pratyahara is the withdrawal of the senses or an allowing to tune deeper into our Highest Selves.
How can I reset my mind, body and soul?
When we take five minutes a day to write down and ask ourselves what touched our hearts, what we need to let go of, what inspired or surprised us that day and what we are grateful for, we can tune deeper into our needs and what lights us up, aside from striving and thriving towards achieving our goals, or ticking the to-do boxes.
When we close down the eyes, focus on our third eye, or chant a mantra in our minds, we can withdraw from our senses and tune deeper into the energetics of our chakras, and our emotional and subtle bodies. Where have we fallen out of alignment in these spaces and where can I practice more self-love?
Going for a walk and being surrounded by nature.
Letting your mind wander and rest by being surrounded by the beauty of nature whenever you are - by the beach, in the mountains, alongside a river or in a park in the city - there is beauty everywhere and in everything. Pondering on the connection between us and the creation that surrounds us can take us out of the dramas of our lives and make us take life a little less seriously.
Basking in sound and silence.
Singing and chanting is a great way to connect with the Divine and let your mind be scrubbed by the power of mantra. Silence is also a powerful practice to withdraw your energy from others and bring awareness to the power of your thoughts and how they are translated as words in the world. Even taking a day out of your week to get quiet, get disconnected and chant or sing can allow you to go deeper. For those of us who always are listening to music, perhaps see what happens when you surround yourself with natural sounds instead!
Going on a retreat.
Taking the ultimate time for yourself by pampering your mind, body and soul by resting by the shore or basking in nature can be a great way to tune within. My upcoming retreat called Nomad Spirit taking place in Marrakech, Morocco on Nov 2-9, 2019 was created with the goal of having participants rest and reset on the beaches of Ibiza through gentle yoga, sound experiences, lazy beach days, and plant-based nourishment. I firmly believe too it takes going out of our comfort zones to see how other people live in order to make some pivotal shifts in our minds.
So I encourage you to take some time out of your week or month to tune deeper within, and ask yourself what lights you up, what you need in the moment, and how your Higher Self wants to be expressed in your work, relationships and travels. The subtle art of going inward is not a selfish task, it is helping you be in right alignment so you can be of better service to those you care most about.
Love & Light,
Anna Bek is a yogi, DJ, and storyteller with a nomadic spirit. She helps bring people back into their natural rhythms through sacred movement, ancient philosophies, self-care, and sound. By cultivating positive habits, she is empowering others to turn routine into ritual, finding creativity in the mundane. She enjoys crafting soundscapes to help motivate the movement and realign specific chakra points with live and prerecorded sounds. Each yoga session with her is tuned to a unique rhythm and intended to connect like-minded beings to elevate consciousness and inspire change. Check out Anna’s upcoming offerings in Morocco and Spain!