Thursday, June 3, 2010

East, Sleep, Poop, (Yoga)

I know there's some hierarchy about the needs people have but we forget all the time. When dealing with children, especially those too young to "use their words," we look at their behaviour and if it's off, we start asking questions to ourselves. Has this child had enough sleep? Have they had enough to eat? When did they last go to bathroom?

And then we grow up and no one asks that about us anymore and we carry on. (Funnily enough, the words used for the greeting "how are you" in some Asian languages is "have you eaten.") And we carry on until we get stopped. Life breaks down. Things stop working. We get cranky.

It's at that point (earlier would be better) that we could be asking ourselves, have I had a good sleep? Like, am I getting enough sleep in general? Many people do not get enough sleep. As we get older, we so much do not get enough sleep that we take medication to help us get enough sleep. We've had to miss a lot of sleep before we get tranquilizers and then the sleep we get isn't quite as "pure" as before. All medications have side-effects.

We do things that discourage good sleep. Here are just a few things we do that can make sleeping difficult: watching TV late (for some people I know it puts them to sleep); being on the computer up until bed time; eating late; eating certain foods late; drinking alcohol in the evening (it may make you sleepy initially but will wake you up later); going to bed without enough time to get the amount of sleep we need; and you know how the rest.

And then there's eating. Have you eaten? And by that, really I mean, have you nourished yourself? There's lots of foods we can eat that do not nourish our bodies. So have you eaten in a way that serves your body first? If your body's given the best ingredients to do its job, it will function better. We know this, but we don't always do it...

Pooping. Very important to poop... I work with kids in the hospital every week and a big issue for them when they're away from home and with new foods and program, etc., is finding a way to go to the bathroom in peace. If you don't have a good system for pooping or your poops aren't healthy, you'll not be in top form. That's just how it goes.

And then there's yoga and meditation. Most people can probably get by without doing yoga and/or meditation. For a while. Until they start adding it into their lives. Once you've added it into your life, it'll be noticeable when you don't do it. If you're used to flossing and brushing your teeth, you won't like the feeling of dirty teeth even for a day. Same thing with doing yoga and meditation. Once you're used to being comfortable in your body and good with yourself and not thrown so far by your thoughts, you won't want to miss it.

So then the question is - did you sleep? Have you eaten? Did you go to the bathroom? Have you done your practice? And if not, what are you going to do about it?


Anonymous said...

Very good post and an excellent reminder. It's funny how all that stuff we think is frantically important at the beginning and end of our lives gets neglected in the middle, isn't it?

Finola Francis said...

I'm so guilty of staying up on the computer too late and drinking wine in the evening. I am definitely not getting enough sleep right now.

I also need to get back into yoga. I'm going to try to do the parliament hill yoga on Wednesdays. My yoga mat is already at work!

Tranimator said...

nice post jamine! the simple fundamentals :)