The power of Ujjayi

I guess Anxiety starts with thinking. Yes, we need to think to function. But most of our thinking is useless unless you are so focused on what you are doing. I am talking about when you don’t have a task at hand. You think about what has happened in the past, what might happen in the future. Somebody said 85% of our thoughts are useless, non-productive thoughts. So, DON’T THINK UNLESS YOU HAVE TO. Now, what do we do when we are not thinking? We can fill the mind with NOTHING, EMPTINESS, BLANKNESS. You might think this is easy. Just try it. For a few moment, let you mind not think. Then you will realize the challenge. For the moment, the mind starts to think, and the thoughts are non-essential, the mind starts to tire. Not only that, depending on what you think, the mind can start to feel – anxiety, tension, etc.

I have felt anxiety or at least the start of it, in the bed. I usually go to bed around 10:30 PM and after some reading I go to sleep. When I wake up in the middle of the night, I am quite refreshing – at least not tired – enough that the thoughts creep into my mind. I have thought about my future or my family and some of these thoughts (like the possible bad ones) causes me anxiety or insecurity. At this point, I feel sort of a tension near my heart – as though the passage that the blood flows through is squeezed and the flow is restricted. If these thoughts and incumbent tension/insecurity goes out of hand, I can see how it can lead to panic.

Luckily, Ujjayi comes to help at these moments. I have practiced enough Yoga to know that I should stop thoughts when not necessary. Ujjayi is Victorious breath. When you achieve victory over your breath, you are the master of your thoughts. Quite simple put, the simple but enormously powerful practice is just to listen to the sound of your breath. You can make noise while breathing if that helps. What this listening does is to keep the mind from thinking. Simple!

Now, when I say Ujjayi is enormously powerful, this statement is very loaded. I know what difference it makes when I kick out that anxiety from myself when I practice Ujjayi. I know, the effect on my health when I practice Ujjayi again and again and again. It takes you to a state of mind that you want to be with all the time. It is so addicting! Unfortunately, we can’t be practicing Ujjayi or Yoga all the time. We live in a system where the system overwhelms us and controls us. Getting back to what I wanted to say, Ujjayi induces calmness and fights anxiety. It fights depression and stress and everything bad for the mind. You will realize what I am saying if you make it a habit of practicing Ujjayi regularly. Please do; that calmness can change your life.


  1. Loosely pronounced – ‘ooo-jay-eee’. In the Sanskrit pronunciation, ‘oo-jja-ee’ – emphasis on the middle syllable.

  2. I have problems sleeping and will definitely try this. How do you pronounce it?

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