How to feel happy when you’re down – by an expert yoga teacher

-Sep 13, Jenny Paul, Mind -

We have turned to one of our favourite yoga teachers Nadia Narain for some advice on how to think positively when life is getting you down. 

Everyone has moments of feeling down, and in fact there’s a pretty solid argument that it’s actually good for you – if you didn’t ever feel fed up, then you wouldn’t ever make any positive changes for the better. 

But some days, it can be hard to kick yourself out of an emotional funk, and that’s why we have turned to Nadia Narain, who is one of Britain’s best-loved yoga teachers and author of a best-selling book – which The Sunday Times dubbed ‘Marie Kondo for the mind’. 

Self-care is essential when you’re not feeling good 

Nadia advises that self-care is what we should focus on when we’re feeling less than sparkly: ‘I’ve been invited to do talks at companies and what I’m teaching them and my students is that in the words of the great Dalai Lama “you are not qualified to look after anyone unless you look after yourself first.”’

She continues: ‘When you get on a plane and they show you the safety demonstration, it’s the same thing every time: Put the oxygen mask on yourself first then on your kids.’

How to learn to look after yourself 

Nadia explains: ‘Learning to look after yourself, I think is one of the most important tools we could learn. Learning when is enough, when you need a break, when you need some quiet time even a nap!

‘It’s something that you can only reflect on and see the difference it makes in your life. Time is a luxury. Time for yourself to reflect and retreat and be in nature and practice yoga and meditation and to breath are such essential components for health and well being. I’m learning to look after myself better and as I do, I feel so much happier and light and strong and balanced all at the same time. If I don’t look after myself first, I cant be there for anyone else!’

How to do nostril breathing for instant calm 

Nadia has also kindly filmed us a sequence that she and her sister Katia talked about in their first best-selling book Self-Care for the Real World, which had forewords by both Kate Moss and Reese Witherspoon. A second book called Rituals for Every Day will be on sale soon and we can’t wait. 

This is how to do nostril breathing, which is one method that Nadia recommends for an instant way to feel calm when you feel as though your blood is boiling. 




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If you’re looking for more positivity, read our interview with Strictly star Karen Clifton who reveals how to stay positive no matter what life throws at you. And, broadcaster Edith Bowman has some fantastic advice for when other people are saying negative things about you. 

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