Hildegard

Yoga Nidra and anxiety

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I was doing yoga nidra earlier today as suggested by Candace's New You Yoga program* and I started feeling quite anxious and out of it. I started thinking (for any value of thinking because I felt really out of it) that maybe I should call it quits because it started to feel like a full-blown anxiety attack. I couldn't make up my mind, but the phone rang and I had to pick up. I decided to continue the practice, mostly out of curiosity and stubbornness, while also hoping there would be some sort of 'wake up' section toward the end of the session. I was able to carry on, but I can't say it was a very soothing experience.

Now, this wasn't the first time I did yoga nidra, though it was the first time I did yoga nidra in the middle of the day. Previous experiences only included yoga nidra before bedtime and they all were very relaxing, nothing at all like what I went through today.

I was wondering if the sudden burst of anxiety I experienced could be considered as normal, that is to say, if strong emotional release is a common effect from yoga nidra practice. If that's the case, I'm curious as to whether anyone have any advice as to how to deal with said strong emotions (anxiety) following the practice. I went on to do my regular yoga practice (a nice flow with some good heart opening poses and plenty of focus on my breathing), but the weird feeling in my chest that anxiety brought along hasn't gone away.

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*not Candace's actual yoga nidra video. Can't afford it at the moment.

YogaByCandace likes this

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This used to happen to me when I was in a really bad place mentally and physically. In the middle of my Lyme disease treatment and in a lot of pain emotionally and physically - I would lay down for yoga nidra and a wave of heat would wash over me and I felt like I was suffocating. When I was going through teacher training they said there's no need to really evaluate or mull over the emotions that pop up. Instead, just trust the process and let them come and go just as you would with thoughts during the practice, and as you continue to practice they will eventually fizzle out and you can get back to your innate state of balance and calm. That was a frustrating answer for me because I always wanted to process these things and go over them, but my teachers encouraged me to just let them go, suggesting that going over and over them was a way of attachment. So I tried to let them go, and eventually that reaction stopped coming up for me and now yoga nidra is one of my favorite practices. So I'm not sure if that's super helpful but...there ya go! :) 

Hildegard likes this

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21 hours ago, YogaByCandace said:

This used to happen to me when I was in a really bad place mentally and physically. In the middle of my Lyme disease treatment and in a lot of pain emotionally and physically - I would lay down for yoga nidra and a wave of heat would wash over me and I felt like I was suffocating. When I was going through teacher training they said there's no need to really evaluate or mull over the emotions that pop up. Instead, just trust the process and let them come and go just as you would with thoughts during the practice, and as you continue to practice they will eventually fizzle out and you can get back to your innate state of balance and calm. That was a frustrating answer for me because I always wanted to process these things and go over them, but my teachers encouraged me to just let them go, suggesting that going over and over them was a way of attachment. So I tried to let them go, and eventually that reaction stopped coming up for me and now yoga nidra is one of my favorite practices. So I'm not sure if that's super helpful but...there ya go! :) 

Oh, this is very helpful indeed. I was worried that I'd either overreacted, done it wrong or there was something wrong with me. Knowing that it's normal and what to do next time it happens is a huge relief. I'm pretty stressed out and both my mental and physical health are not what I'd like them to be, so it makes perfect sense that I had such a response to the practice.

Thank you!

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