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The power of Yoga, Breathe and Meditation for Mental Health

By now, most of us have heard what science has proven: that a regular Yoga practice is good for our mental health and resilience. I know it firsthand. To this day, I openly credit Yoga with literally saving my life. Ironically, I found Yoga extremely difficult to practice when I first tried it years ago. The physical part came easily to me- the breath and meditation piece did not! In my darkest hour, I desperately knew that I needed what I most resisted. I continued to simply show up. With consistency, what was so difficult at first eventually became a source of refuge and medicine for my soul. My overall health improved dramatically as a result. I believe in Yoga because my wellness is simply not the same when I do not spend time on the mat consistently.

I chose to become a Yoga teacher years ago so that I could share the tools of the practice to help others the way my amazing teachers helped me. It has been my joy to share Yoga as “medicine” with students in community classes who simply want to relieve stress and feel better about themselves. As a clinician, I have offered Yoga techniques to patients suffering from chronic pain, depression, anxiety and recovering from addiction. Yoga has taught me how powerful our ability to heal ourselves truly is. Sometimes we simply don’t know how to access that internal ability.

At this time, we remain in the midst of a global pandemic that has changed all of our lives and created a secondary pandemic of mental health crises fueled by stress, fear, and uncertainty for many. Stress and emotional dysregulation are often the root cause of many chronic illnesses- mental as well as physical. If they are not the cause, stress and emotional dysregulation certainly get in the way of our ability to heal from anything. Our stress can manifest in so many ways- including as pain in the body, anxiety and racing thoughts, poor sleep, increased blood pressure- the list is incredibly long and involves every system of the body.

In response to all of this, I am honored to offer Yoga and Meditation for Mental Health the first Sunday of every month at Buka Yoga as a service to our community beginning in March. Please know that we are not promoting Yoga as a “cure” for anything or a replacement for any necessary medical treatments one may need to be well. We also recognize that it may not be the right fit for every person. But if you are interested in exploring Yoga to potentially help you feel calmer, improve your sleep, boost your energy, connect with your body in ways you may not have in the past, or to simply benefit your overall health, then I would love to see you on your mat. The only requirement is to show up. Be sure to bring your curiosity with you😉.

This is a donation-based class. We want to offer this practice to anyone who needs it, even if you can’t financially afford to attend. Our donations each month will go to support a community Mental Health Center in Castle Rock, CO. At Buka Yoga we are about supporting our community and honored to be able to offer this monthly practice. Join me in the studio or online. If you sign up and can’t make the class, we’ll record it and send you a link to watch when you can.

Wishing you happiness and wellness-

Lourdes Wiley, RN, RYT, CHC

Lourdes Wiley has been serving the holistic needs of patients as an RN for 20 years. She is an Integrative Yoga Therapy teacher with trauma-informed training, a Certified HeartMath Clinician, and Certified Health Coach. It is her joy to share these evidence-based tools and techniques to help anyone interested in learning them.

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