6 Yoga Poses For Mercury Retrograde That Will Keep You Centered Through The Chaos
With the final retrograde of 2017 currently taking reign, you might find yourself feeling incredibly out of whack during this astrologically stressful time. Mercury is a mischievous little planet that seems to frequently enjoy wreaking havoc on, well, basically all of humanity. However, you don't have to feel totally helpless until Dec. 22. Rolling out your mat and flowing through a few yoga poses for Mercury retrograde will help you find your balance throughout the chaos.
From messing with your innermost emotions, to provoking inexplicable anxiety, to f*cking with your sleep schedule, the solar system's smallest planet sure knows how to do a whole lot of damage in a short amount of time. Literally every time I'm feeling totally unstable and not at all like myself, I check to see if Mercury's in retrograde, and sure enough, that little demon planet appears to be spinning backward.
But, as a yoga teacher, I know that the power of a grounding and soothing flow can cure just about anything, which is why I like to incorporate a few balancing and calming asanas into my classes and personal practice during each and every retrograde.
If the current retrograde is making you feel some type of way, try flowing through these six yoga poses during your practice to calm your mind and find your center.
1. Alternate Nostril Breathing (Nadi Shodhana)
Start your practice with a technique called "alternate nostril breathing," which will balance your nervous system and provide some much-needed mental clarity.
This "pranayama" (aka breathing practice) can help reduce stress and anxiety, improve concentration, and even balance the powerful solar energy around us. Basically, this bad boy can do no wrong.
It's best to practice this one on an empty stomach, so try to do it in the morning when you first wake up. However, if you're not able to do this pranayama in the a.m., don't sweat it. Nadi shodhana will help soothe your retrograde struggles at any hour of the day.
2. Mountain Pose (Tadasana)
Mountain pose is the foundation of many yoga poses, and it'll leave you feeling grounded, stable, and connected to the Earth.
Tadasana may seem ridiculously simple, but oftentimes in yoga, less is more, and this is certainly the case given all the chaos taking place during Mercury's time in retrograde.
Draw your shoulders down your back, and tuck your tailbone as you inhale deeply. As you exhale, close your eyes and savor the stillness and strength found in the present moment.
3. Half Moon Pose (Ardha Chandrasana)
You probably feel anything but balanced during the retrograde, so adding a couple of balancing asanas into your yoga sequence will help you translate a physical sense of stability into a subconscious, psychological balance.
Half moon pose requires strength and focus, but once you get the hang of it, this asana will help melt away many of the anxieties you're experiencing. If you're having trouble balancing, try practicing the pose against a wall.
Retrograde's got nothin' on you, girl.
4. Tree Pose (Vriksasana)
Tree pose is another grounding and balancing asana that is perfect for when your brain feels totally wired.
Place your raised foot on either your calf or your thigh, and bring your hands to heart center in prayer. As your thumbs connect to your heart space, breathe deeply, and let go of any unnecessary tension that you may be holding onto.
Again, a wall can be used for support if balance feels a bit unattainable during this time (curse you, Mercury).
5. Goddess Pose (Utkata Konasana)
Utkata konasana is a strong yoga pose that will ground you through pretty much any turbulent experience. You'll literally feel like you can harness all of the feel-good forces of the universe when you sink into goddess pose — it's that good.
Close your eyes and channel your inner, glowing goddess. Try sinking a bit deeper into the pose, remembering to keep your chest wide open as you focus on your breath.
6. Legs Up The Wall Pose (Viparita Karani)
When Mercury is in retrograde and trying to steal your beauty sleep, legs-up-the-wall pose is here for you, fam.
Viparita karani is literally the cure to the chaos, as it will help silence all the noisy chatter fluttering around in your brain. Try practicing this posture right before you go to bed so that you'll be able to sleep soundly through the night.
Peace out, retrograde — see you next year (ugh).