Hello and Welcome! Staying centered is remaining balanced. Balanced within your own sphere as well as balanced in your interactions and community. Centeredness and balance infer a collaborative and open response to internal sensations and external expectations.
When you are pulled in one direction or the other this can have the effect of destabilizing you internally as well as you within your environment. It can then skew your energy and focus onto a path that is not in your best interest.
The best way to stay centered is to maintain an internal awareness of your senses. Paying attention to how you feel in each of your internal centers will assist you in staying centered. You may use you internal sensory guidance system – your five plus one senses – to remain centered. The use of mindfulness and paradigm shifting are of great benefit in developing your relationship to your internal guidance system especially through paying attention and neutral observation of your sensory guidance system responses.
One way to develop this relationship to your centers is through the practice of Yoga. This is because you will have the opportunity to connect breath, with the integration of physical body positions and energetic spiritual centers.
In the Yogic tradition there are bandha that need to remain closed or locked as you do various positions to assist in building physical strength and maintain the pose for clarification. These bandha correspond with certain energy centers in your body called chakras. What is useful for the musculature is related to the emotional component of the center – one is at the root chakra and is referred to a kegel closure – the root chakra relates to survival and may connect to issues of fear. The next important bandha that is discussed is the belly button area – holding this bandha closed is described as pressing the belly button to the spine – this is related to the second chakra which deals with creativity of all types including sexuality and procreation. The third bandha that is discussed is described as holding the chin to the chest – this has a dual effect of closing off the throat chakra while opening further the chakra at the third-eye or the brow chakra which relates to inner vision and intuition. By closing off these centers while holding the Yoga positions the practitioner is strengthening the flow of energy within his centers so that the energy doesn’t dissipate. This results in strengthening the muscles and the physical core of the practitioner as well as the energetic flow of internal connection between these centers. This is how an intentional Yoga practice can assist in the strengthening of a practitioner’s sense of being, and remaining, centered.
Any focused attention with breath to your inner sensory guidance system will produce an increase in your awareness about what and how you are feeling, and responding, in any given situation and can provide guidance about what action is in your best interest which includes a choice to not act from an intentional place.
Centering your self is simply paying attention to, observation of, gathering information from, your internal sensory guidance system (your five senses plus one, intuition) and responding from a place of compassion, love, and neutrality to that internally connected information.
Remember that centered sensory guidance information is in general a calm, and charge-free instinct and results in a sense that something is the best response – rather than a loud, pushing-through-to -the-fore, anxiety-filled, reactive response.
Simple focused breathing for 30 seconds to 3 minutes can increase your capacity for mindfulness and can re-center you.
Longer focused, breathing meditation for 15 - 30 minutes can increase your centering-practice even further and allow you a space to reconnect to your inner self and inner center, this has a lovely additional effect of reducing your blood pressure and reducing your sense of anxiety by bringing your fully into the present moment.
A focused intentional Yoga practice can also encourage you to develop a deeper centering practice. For more information check out this article on Yogi Times, connecting spirit mind and body through Yoga.
Any activity that is present moment focused with love and breath will increase your capacity for centering, praying meditation, walking, running, singing, and dancing all have the components for increasing or deepening your integrated spirit, mind, and body connection.
Staying centered increases self-knowledge, self-love, strength, and right-action. In love and light, Beth