Your Fears and Yoga: Learning How to Self-Soothe

We all have fears and our own ways of dealing with them. We’ve grown up with them, developed them somewhere along the way, or hidden them so well that we’ve forgotten they were there. But we have a couple of them we need to learn to overcome, or at the very least, learn to live with. The stress and anxiety from fears can have many physical manifestations. One thing that yoga teaches you is that whenever you start getting anxious or stressed, learn to manage your breath. As unlikely a solution as it is for most people, it’s awareness and managing your breathing patterns that help address these symptoms.

So grab your yoga pants or workout clothes and let’s get comfortable.

Restorative Yoga

A version of yoga highly accessible for everyone as it has different variations of reclined, seated or prone poses. Here’s a simple sequence to get you started:

Janu Sirsasana

  1. Sit on a folded blanket with your legs straight out in front of you.
  2. Bend your right knee and place the sole of your foot against your left inner thigh.
  3. Stack 1 to 3 blocks in front of your right shin to rest your forehead on top of.
  4. Have your arms rest by the sides with your palms turned up.
  5. Set the timer for 5-7 minutes and close your eyes.
  6. Do the other side.

Reclined Twists

You’ll need two blocks and a bolster.

  1. Place one block the second height at the back of your mat and set the other block the shortest height 5 inches away from the first block and closer to you.
  2. Rest the bolster on top like a slide.
  3. Sit with your legs folded together and sit really close to the bolster with your right hip next to the lower edge.
  4. Place your hands on either side of the bolster.
  5. Inhale and extend your chest up, turn your torso further to the right, and lay your chest and upper body on it.
  6. If it’s comfortable for your neck, look over your right shoulder.
  7. If not, turn it to the left.
  8. Arms rest at the sides at a comfortable distance for you.
  9. Set the timer for 5-7 minutes.
  10. Close your eyes and rest.
  11. Do the other side.

Supta Baddha Konasana

  1. Keep the blocks and bolster set up and grab another pair of blocks or pillows.
  2. Sit with your back turned away from the bolster with your tailbone close to the setup but not sitting on it.
  3. Bend your knees and open them to the sides to rest the soles of your feet together.
  4. Prop both legs with pillows underneath the thighs and recline onto the bolster.
  5. Set the timer for 5-7 minutes.
  6. Close your eyes and turn your palms to face up.
  7. Rest.


Breathing exercises are helpful and a way to self-soothe. Prenatal yoga is an excellent example of how it creates a more peaceful atmosphere for what could potentially be stressful.

2-to-1 Breathing

  1. Sit upright and you can have a blanket to sit on.
  2. Make sure your head and spine are aligned.
  3. Place one hand on your belly and another on your chest.
  4. Notice if you’re breathing more through the chest or through your belly and start transitioning into breathing through your belly more.
  5. Count silently 1 to 3 for your inhales, and then, count 1 to 6 on your exhales.
  6. Contract your belly to prolong your exhales.
  7. Do 15-20 rounds.