The wonderful thing about a yoga or meditation practice is that you don’t need a lot of physical “things” to get started. In fact, you don’t need much more than a cheap yoga mat and some basic props you’d find around your house to begin. Want to become a yogi? Awesome, then do a little yoga in your living room. It’s that simple!
I like to think of props and other yogic objects as tools to deepen that simple practice. For me, these sacred tools allow me to tap into my own spirituality on a deeper level and open my heart and mind to the endless possibilities of this practice. Over the years, the trinkets I’ve collected have in and of themselves absorbed the magic of my yoga practice, making them that much more special. Whether I’m holding one of my favorite crystals in the palm of my hand or wearing a sacred mala as I go about my busy New York day, these objects carry great meaning and, in many ways, allow me to take my yoga and meditation practice well beyond the four corners of my mat.
One of my favorite tools for deepening my practice off (and on) of my mat is mala beads. This magical meditation tool typically contains 108 beads and is used similarly to a rosary during mantra meditation. Malas can be worn as a sacred necklace or bracelet and are a wonderful reminder that your meditation practice can and does travel with you wherever your journey may take you.
Crystals & Grids
As a crystal Reiki Master, this is a biggie for me. I love crystals and the high vibration they can bring into a room or space. Different crystals signify different emotions, and can therefore bring out certain aspects of my own yoga or meditation practice when I use them. Rose quartz tends to help during heart-opening sequences or loving kindness meditations, amethyst guides me whenever I’m working on tapping into my intuition, you get the idea.
Having quite the collection of crystals of my own, I also like to display these sacred stones throughout my home. One of my favorite ways of doing this is through a crystal grid. Using the sacred geometry of the seed of life, I arrange my crystals in a design based on my mood or whatever intentions I might be working on that week. The act of making these grids is a form of visual meditation and then, when I place my grid in my home, it serves as a reminder of my intention whenever I walk by!
Fresh Flowers & Plants
For the same reason, I also love fresh flowers and plants. Like crystals, these living tools carry a high vibration and can elevate the vibration of any room where you might place them. My own meditation corner is chock full of live plants and is a mini slice of urban nature.
Incense & Essential Oils
I’m a huge aromatherapy gal, so it’s no surprise that my love of incense and essential oils carries over into my yoga and meditation practice. Incense always helps me clear away any negative or stagnant energy in a room (thus creating the perfect environment for meditation), while essential oils allow me to heal emotionally-charged energy during and after my yoga practice. I always keep an essential oil blend in my purse too because hey, you never know!
Meditation Cushion (& a Furry Rug!)
One of the best “yoga props” that I ever invested in was a solid meditation cushion. It was a treat for myself back when I first started diving back into yoga, and has quickly become my favorite tool for deepening my practice. Not only does this nifty cushion support my spine during seated meditation, it also creates a dedicated space for my practice. I leave my meditation cushion out in my little corner of the living room so it’s there, ready to go, whenever I want to meditate. Bonus points for placing a meditation cushion on top of a super soft, faux fur rug to tickle your toes and bring a little extra snuggle to your practice!
Books on Spirituality
I read. A lot. And I’d say a good 65% of the things I read have to do with spirituality and deepening my personal practice. Some of my favorites right now include:
- A Return to Love by Marianne Williamson
- Be Here Now by Ram Dass
- The Wisdom of Sundays by Oprah (and other incredibly inspirational humans)
- The Untethered Soul by Michael A. Singer
- The Book of Awakening by Mark Nepo
Oracle cards and wisdom decks are another incredible way to set intentions for your practice. I have a few that I return to again and again, and always draw a new card to place on the altar in my little meditation corner each week!
There is nothing more magical than the sound of a Tibetan singing bowl. Depending on the pitch of your bowl, the sound created when playing this instrument is typically tied to a specific chakra in the body. For example, my singing bowl mirrors the sacred sound of “Om.”
And finally, what 2018 list of tools would be complete without a little tech? Surprisingly, your phone is actually one of the best mindfulness tools in your arsenal. Why? Because you carry that damn thing around with you each and every day, that’s why.
I have a dedicated folder in my phone called “Self Care” where all of my mindfulness apps live. Some of my favorites include:
- Calm – guided meditations, sleep stories, and meditation series (including a phenomenal one for commuting!)
- Insight Timer – guided meditations & a literal meditation timer (you pick the instrument, duration, and time!)
- CalmKeeper – incredible mindfulness activities to distract an anxious mind
- Viridi – you tend to a cute succulent garden that never dies, need I say more?
- Colorfy – adult coloring on-the-go
- The Moon – tracks the moon cycle and alerts me of each full moon
So, what are your favorite tools to deepen your existing yoga and meditation practice?
The Yogi Lawyer