Yoga Nidra for HSP
Yoga nidra or sleep yoga offers you guided verbal instructions will lead you to a state of consciousness that are somewhere between waking, dreaming and sleeping. It is a guided meditation that takes you to a place of relaxed, spacious awareness. You will be guided into a state of effortless non-doing that is beneficial for highly sensitive people. Through your experience of yoga nidra you will enter into a conscious sleep where your mind slows down and your thoughts move further and further away from you.
Elaine Aaron, research psychologist and foremost expert on highly sensitive people talks about the importance of rest in the form of transcendence for highly sensitive people. In other words rest that allows us to rise above it all in the form of meditation or contemplation. This is a kind of meditative rest that allows highly sensitive people to remove themselves from ordinary thinking into the pure consciousness of pure being. Elaine Aaron says it will give us a bigger and fresher perspective of life when we return.
I feel that this prescription of meditative rest and transcendence is the perfect description of yoga nidra. A way of resting within the pure awareness that exists within our waking, dreaming, deep sleep beyond all imagery and pure consciousness that is our Awareness of our True Self.
Each of the different states whether waking, dreaming, sleep or the pure consciousness of awareness offers our mind a different quality. Sometimes deep rest, sometimes a feeling of security, sometimes downtime for unwinding and allowing our minds to float and sometimes access to our deep inner resources.
In order to practice yoga nidra you want to be as comfortable as possible. You can practice it on a yoga mat, but you could also practice it in bed, on the couch or in a chair. You are going to be here for 20 minutes, so it is a good idea to have some padding underneath you and a blanket over top of you in case you get cool. You might want to have a pillow under your head so that your chin is slightly lower than your forehead. This will allow you to access your parasympathetic nervous system – your rest and digest. Using and eye pillow or covering your eyes will allow you to release over stimulation.