We warn children not to compare themselves to others, and tell them that words will never hurt them. Yet these interactions are prevalent on social media. Its nature invites status comparisons. As an online channel, it lets people communicate in an asynchronous, invisible, and often anonymous manner. Its users feel a degree of disinhibition and might behave differently than they would in person.
Though it offers many benefits and enables positive interactions, social media also makes many people feel status pressure. It exposes them to a lot of harsh criticism and can make people lose their self-esteem.
Social media isn’t going anywhere, and those aspects of it aren’t likely to change anytime soon. Thus, most people turn to coping mechanisms or other sources of support. It’s great to receive some words of encouragement from your real-life friends. Pampering yourself with a luxurious hair mask is an excellent way to de-stress. But if there’s one practice that can help you counteract the root of the problem, it’s yoga. Here’s why.
Boosting mood through action
Anyone who’s had to deal with issues of negative self-esteem can tell you that it’s difficult even to get started on the right path. Negativity puts you in the wrong frame of mind. It saps your confidence and tends to amplify other underlying issues. It creates a spiral that drags you downward.
Yoga practitioners have long known that it has powerful benefits for our well-being. It incorporates techniques for improved breathing and meditation that are known to improve physical and mental health. However, research has also demonstrated that the mere act of performing asanas, or yoga poses, improves your self-esteem.
The scientific mechanism underlying this effect can be linked to the ability of asanas to stimulate the vagus nerve. The exact process is not yet clear, but what matters most is the implication. Simply performing an asana makes you feel more empowered and in control. Thus, even if you’re burdened with negativity, you can break out of the trap. Get into a pose, and start feeling the mood boost. It will enable you to make even greater strides forward.
Embracing positive thinking
Despite the benefits, which are increasingly being circulated on the internet, many people still hesitate to practice yoga. When you see images of advanced practitioners performing amazing feats with their bodies, it can be truly intimidating. Just like watching a master artist at work, it can feel like something only possible for those few with natural gifts. And if you fail in the attempt, you might just end up looking silly.
However, those thoughts of fear, failure, and limitations all stem from the mind. Yoga is all about learning through practice. Sequences are devised for a reason; they let your body lead you into the flow. You don’t jump into bow pose or downward-facing dog without first entering easier poses, such as bridge or cat-cow. If you’re reluctant at first, seek help from a trained instructor. They will guide you through poses that are suited to your level. You’ll be able to find the right sequence to enter challenging poses.
Done correctly, yoga will demonstrate the capabilities of your body. You can perform asanas that your mind would not have thought possible. By letting the body lead the way, you put yourself in the best position to embrace positivity and disregard excess of thought.
Extending the transformation
People often work out to achieve external benefits, such as slimming down or getting sculpted muscles. But doing yoga is unlike many other forms of physical exercise. While you’ll improve in terms of physical fitness, yoga is an internal practice. It starts to change you from within by creating a personal transformation.
This transformation can then spread outward. Once you’ve learned to unburden yourself of thoughts and emotions, you’ll experience greater freedom to act and express yourself with confidence. In this respect, yoga can operate much like a keystone habit. It functions as that one fundamental, powerful practice that makes everything easier.
Practice yoga, and it will become easier to deal with stress and anxiety. You can be honest with yourself about the people and things that matter and shed the rest. This frees up more time for you to improve in other aspects. You can further your mindfulness practice by writing, for instance. Or try your hand at an artistic endeavor, being unafraid to fail.
We can’t go back to the pre-internet age, and negative influences will always abound online. By practicing yoga, you’ll be able to transform your life. Time and again, you’ll manage to rise above negativity and keep on getting better no matter what people say to try and bring you down.