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Yoga Nidra


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Hey all, quick question. I have gone to two yoga nidra sessions. Usually I can keep pretty focused and follow the guided meditation and there's no issue. Then like 2/3 of the way through the exercise and my mind starts wandering like crazy. To really random things. Almost like dreaming? Or like the visions you start to see right as you're falling asleep? And as these random visions start happening, I start losing focus on what the instructor is saying, and I have to keep fighting to really focus on the instructors words. 

 

Is this normal? Does anyone else have this issue? Does anyone have any general opinions or advice on yoga nidra since I'm a beginner? Thanks for your help. I appreciate it!

 

-Bully

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My guess would be that you can only stay focused for so long, and then you start drifting into more of a dream-like unfocused state. Yoga nidra requires relaxing into a receptive state, and maintaining focus. You don't seem to have a problem relaxing into a receptive state, so you just work on maintaining focus. Do you have a meditation practice? Any of the types of meditation that have you focus on a given thing will help develop that skill. Just that process of sitting and focusing on a thing, on your breath, on a picture, on a word, whatever, and when your attention starts to wander, bring it back. Don't fight it, or create mental tension, just persistently redirect your attention to the object of focus. 

 

This is a book on Yoga Nidra, by the teacher who developed the modern practice: https://archive.org/details/YogaNidra_201610

Joshua - Yoga Ninja Weasel #20: The Weasel goes on an Adventure!

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thank you @Darth Yoga !! I appreciate it. That makes sense to me. I am trying to meditate more, but have only really done 15 minutes at a time to start. So that makes sense, with yoga nidra being an hour long activity at our studio, that it's difficult to maintain focus for that long. It was just a weird experience to me because in meditation i can more easily get rid of thoughts or whatever...but with yoga nidra its not just thoughts its like a dream, like i said, i started seeing bright colors and weird stuff like that, and that was harder to draw my attention away from and get back to focusing on my intention and body scan and whatnot. so i'll just keep practicing and trying to hold my focus for longer!! thank you!!

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Yoga nidra does put you in an altered state of consciousness, so it is kind of like trying to meditate while on drugs. :) But it is essentially the same process, whether it is mundane thoughts of your to-do list, or fidgeting, or psychedelic unicorns, or visions of the celestial masters. You observe your attention has left your focus, you breathe, and you bring it back.

 

There are other guided meditation type techniques that involve engaging with the experiences one has in that weird dream-like trance state, following them and seeing where they go, but yoga nidra generally you tune that stuff out and focus on what you are focusing on. You can try some other time actually having your intention as getting into that dream-like state and running off with the psychedelic unicorns (or whatever) for a while. 

Joshua - Yoga Ninja Weasel #20: The Weasel goes on an Adventure!

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