Yoga Nidra, or “yogic sleep,” is a powerful experience of progressively relaxing and restoring our whole bodymind, that then naturally opens us to accessing our intuition, unconditional joy, and deep peace. The Yoga Nidra process also makes it possible to clear out habits that no longer serve us and bring about positive and durable changes. One element of practice is our sankalpa, a self-selected intention or resolve.
Our day-to-day frame of consciousness (beta brain waves) makes it extremely difficult to make and maintain our good intentions because they crash into our long term conditioning, habits, and social pressures.
During Yoga Nidra, we consciously experience different types of brainwave levels that are receptive to change that include alpha, theta, and delta frequencies. When we make a resolve in the subconscious mind, conditions are created for significant and transformative change to take root and grow.
Establishing Your Sankalpa
Time is set aside at the beginning of Yoga Nidra for a sankalpa to reveal itself naturally instead of intellectually. Making intellectual sankalpas rarely yield results. In other words, one that you “should” make, or one to please others. Go for a balance between letting it come to you intuitively and thinking it through. If you have trouble establishing a genuine sankalpa, trust that your higher self already knows just what is needed and is working in the background on your behalf.
Furthermore, you could have one specific sankalpa to help with weight loss, getting more exercise, or stopping an unhealthy habit, but it’s advised that you pick a grander quality instead. In doing so, the behaviour change is likely to happen anyway, and you will also reap many more benefits. For example, if you choose kindness as your sankalpa, kindness will naturally bring on generosity, patience, and other positive qualities.
Word your sankalpa positively, in the present tense, clearly, and concisely. Keep it consistent. Back it up sincerely with gratitude and inner will. If using “I am” seems too challenging, try adding “more and more” to it. For example, “I am content, more and more.”
I am kind.
I am trusting.
I embrace all of who I am.
I enjoy life fully.
I welcome health and wellness.
true nature is joyful.
Using a Sankalpa during Yoga Nidra
A sankalpa is first silently said at the beginning of your Yoga Nidra experience and with your whole heart. It helps if you use your senses to imagine what it would be like if it were already true. Once again, repeat your sankalpa near the end of Yoga Nidra, namely, when you are totally at ease and in the fertile theta/delta brain-wave state, and before coming back to full awareness. This is when your brain is most receptive.
Know that Sankalpa practiced during yoga nidra is bound to come true in your life