Readiness and Reminders
Choose a quiet place. One where you’ll feel comfortable and are unlikely to be disturbed. Get your props ready, shut the door, dim the lights, and turn off the phone or whatever else might be distracting.
Relaxation Pose (Shavasana)
Let’s get ready to experience yoga nidra. Lie down on your back, aligning your head, neck, and spine. If you like, use a thin cushion under your head and a cover for your comfort.
Move your shoulders down from your ears and tuck your shoulder blades in comfortably. Place your arms out to your sides with your palms up. Have your legs uncrossed and out straight.
Make sure the insides of your legs don’t touch. If you prefer, put your feet flat on the floor with your knees up. Please close your eyes or have them slightly open.
Mentally, let yourself know that it’s time to experience the rest, relaxation, and renewal of yoga nidra… Make yourself as comfortable as possible. In your own way, remind yourself of the value of relaxation and to stay awake… Let your experience be natural and effortless.
Needless distractions will be easy to handle. Feel free to add your own reminders now.
Setting a Sankalpa
This is the time for making your sankalpa. It’s a consistent statement that can express a positive quality that’s personally beneficial, or affirm a change in your behavior for the better, or reflect something meaningful you’d like to do with your one, precious life. Something to ignite your energy so your spirit soars.
If you wish, use this time to formulate your resolve now. Keep it clear, brief, and sincere. Be consistent by using the same one from one practice to the next. Silently say yours in a heartfelt way a few times… Imagine what it’d be like if this was already happening.
Take a big breath in and let it go. Remind yourself to stay aware and alert. If you’d like to make any adjustments for more comfort, feel free to do it now.
Yoga Nidra in Six Stages
Stage 1: Body Scanning and Rotation of Consciousness for Physical Relaxation (Anna Maya Kosha)
Notice where the back of your head touches the surface supporting it, having a direct experience of the contact point where your head meets the surface… letting the surface completely support your head. It’s time to open your mouth a little and gently move your jaw up and down and around. Easy does it…
Now, let your mouth rest and close your lips, allowing your teeth to part slightly and the corners of your lips to soften and relax. There’s no need for any facial expression, so let any muscular tightness or holding fade away. Let’s be more attentive to your senses, bringing them alive.
Please focus your attention on your eyes. Keeping them closed, lift and lower your eyebrows a few times… Now, let yourself become still. Become aware of your eyes resting in their sockets… Sense the outside air on your eyelids…and become aware of how your eyelids touch and cover your eyeballs, like eyeshades.
Even though your eyes are closed, you can still see. Start focusing your inner vision and watch whatever appears on the inside shade of your eyelids, coming and going. It might appear dark, there may be some color, perhaps some shapes… It doesn’t really matter what’s there—what matters is watching whatever comes and goes… There’s no need for making comments about it…
Let your eyes rest now and become still, yet watching the inner space…simply looking and softly gazing and watching in stillness.
To enhance hearing awareness, begin noticing the sounds you’re now hearing… Start focusing on the distant sounds…simply taking in these sounds… There’s no need to name them, or even to prefer one sound over another…letting the sounds come to you.
[Pause, thirty to sixty seconds]
And now, listening to the nearby sounds right around you…letting them come and go…listening effortlessly to the nearby sounds… And now, listening to the sound of your own breathing…noticing the air coming and going…and how it sounds… You might be aware of other internal sounds…simply listening with curiosity, openness, and acceptance, listening without reacting or naming the sounds…
And expanding your awareness from the sounds of breathing…and blending the nearby and faraway sounds, like listening peripherally, letting them all blend together…and into the background… And continue listening to the instructions being given. Staying alert and aware yet relaxing and feeling calmer and calmer.
ROTATION OF CONSCIOUSNESS
It’s time to mentally pay a visit to various areas of the body… It’s fine to silently repeat each location to yourself as you mentally follow along. There’s no need for any movements as you follow along.
It’s time to mentally find your right hand…sensing where your right hand is, finding your right hand mentally…your entire right hand…and the right thumb…the pointer finger…the middle finger…the ring finger…and the baby finger…the palm of the hand…the back of the hand…the wrist…the lower arm…elbow…upper arm…right shoulder…the armpit…down the right side to the hip…upper leg…knee…calf muscle…ankle…heel…bottom of the foot…top of the foot…the big toe…the second toe…the third toe…the fourth toe…and the baby toe…and now the whole entire foot…the whole entire foot.
And now, mentally find your left hand…sensing your left hand, finding your left hand mentally…your entire left hand…the left thumb…the pointer finger…the middle finger…the ring finger…and the baby finger…the palm of the hand…the back of the hand…the wrist…the lower arm…elbow…upper arm…left shoulder…the armpit…down the left side to the hip…upper leg…knee…calf muscle…ankle…heel…bottom of the foot…top of the foot…the big toe…the second toe…the third toe…the fourth toe…and the baby toe…and now the whole entire foot…the whole entire foot…having a direct experience of your whole foot.
If you get distracted, simply bring your attention back to what we’re doing. Remember to stay alert and aware. Moving your awareness now to the base of your spine…up to your lower back…midback…and upper back…to the top of your head…and now to the center of the forehead…
[Pause fifteen seconds]
And now to the right eyebrow…left eyebrow…right eyeball…left eyeball…right eye socket…left eye socket…right eyelid…left eyelid…and the line between your eyelids… letting your eyes rest…
And now the right ear… the left ear…right cheek…left cheek…the nose…and the tip of the nose…the upper lip…the lower lip…the line between the lips…and the corners of the lips…
And now the jaw…and going inside the mouth…sensing the inside of the mouth…the tongue…gums…teeth…feeling the moisture, actually feeling the moisture…and tasting the taste, just tasting the taste…and now to the throat…the heart…the upper abdomen…the navel…the lower abdomen…and the base of the spine.
Can you notice yourself sensing a feeling of calmness coupled with alertness?
[Pause thirty seconds]
Remember to stay aware and remain alert. And now to the right leg, the whole and entire right leg…all the parts of the whole right leg, all at once…
And now to the left leg, the whole and entire left leg…and all the parts of the whole left leg, all at once… And sensing both legs at the same time…sensing both legs. And now to the right arm, the whole and entire right arm…all the parts of the whole right arm at once…
And now to the left arm, the whole and entire left arm…and all the parts of the whole left arm at once… And both arms at the same time…sensing both arms…both hands…and both arms and hands.
And moving on to sensing your head…and now your face…and both the head and face at the same time…the head and face together. And now having a direct experience of the back side of your body…sensing the contact points where the back side of your body touches the surface it’s on…picking them all out…feeling them…and now, experiencing the whole back side of your body at once…
And now the front side of your body…the whole and entire front side of your body…perhaps feeling the textures of your clothes touching your skin…and sensing the air touching your skin…and both the front and back side of your body all at once…and all together at the same time. This is the time to sense your whole self, your whole body all at once…all together now…sensing your whole body at the same time…
Notice if it feels heavy and still, being totally relaxed, yet fully awake… Perhaps, sensing the space around your body…and now the body and the space around it simultaneously. If you would like to shift around or make adjustments, do so.
Stage 2: Breathing and Chakra Meditation (Prana Maya Kosha)
Now, we go to the breath…move your awareness to the ongoing and natural breath; there’s no need to change it…just feeling the breath as it comes and goes…again and again, remaining aware of breathing and little else…and letting any mental chatter dissolve into the background, focusing mostly on your breathing…following the soothing breath, over and over…noticing how soft and subtle it is.
Now it’s time to notice where it’s easiest to monitor your breath…it could be how it sounds, or how it feels at your nostrils…perhaps in your throat…or the upper, middle, or lower part of your lungs…simply noticing wherever your breath is most prominent…it really doesn’t matter where, just let your attention and awareness rest wherever your breath is most noticeable now…and if distractions come…simply bring your attention back to the breath…anchoring your attention on breathing.
And now, please rest your attention at the forehead…let your attention remain at the brow.
And now, you can start using your mind’s eye, if you wish, for remembering and imagining a few scenarios. Use whatever senses make this easy for you.
Some people can visualize and “see” things, many don’t. It might be easier to conceptualize, or feel, or use the sense of smell or taste. Sometimes, the scenarios will change on their own in order to match your needs more closely; if so, just let it happen.
And if you’re not in the mood for this, or scenarios are illusive, or something entirely different comes up, that’s fine too.
If you prefer, feel free to linger on a scenario or two—or change it on your own, picking back up whenever you like.
Go with this in the spirit of curiosity, accepting and trusting what’s happening for you, and with the heart of a neutral, yet compassionate observer.
Let your attention start running up and down the entire spine from the top of the head to the base of the spine…circling up and down…up and down…connecting with the energetic power centers within…connecting with the chakras.
Become aware of a time, place, or circumstance for feeling completely comfortable, safe, and protected. It can come from a memory, or from using your imagination to make something up; or maybe you’re feeling it right now.
Bring it alive in your mind’s eye, sensing it now, a feeling of being completely comfortable and protected… How does it look?… What does it feel like?…
Were there sounds or smells involved?
Sensing what it’s like to feel secure and protected. Embellish it any way you want so that you’re feeling more and more secure and protected…
And noticing how and where feeling secure and protected feels in your body. Welcoming in whatever you experience.
Now, draw your awareness to a time, circumstance, or place of experiencing your senses, engrossed in what you were seeing, feeling, smelling, or tasting.
Perhaps it was out in nature, like watching the sky.
Or maybe you were doing something with someone, or experiencing something special. Make it a time when you felt fully present and aware of what you were feeling and sensing.
Feeling emotionally alive, sensual…creative… And noticing whatever your experience is right now. Noticing how it shows up mentally and physically.
SOLAR PLEXUS CHAKRA
Bring to mind a situation when you felt really good about yourself…when you felt on top of the world…happy about an accomplishment, possibly feeling really confident. Use your mind’s eye to bring it back alive…
And noticing how it feels in your body now, sensing it, here and now, physically, mentally, and emotionally. Welcoming into awareness whatever you experience.
This time, recall being loving, compassionate. It could be loving or compassionate toward a person, a pet, or something else. Any affectionate feeling, a fondness.
What’s important is feeling loving…and experiencing it again now… And how about a time when you felt really loved…so cared for and lovable, a time when you felt loved, supported, and accepted, just for who you are… Use your imagination to feel it now and sensing how this impacts your body and mind.
And noticing how this feels, noticing what you’re feeling right now. Welcoming in whatever you’re experiencing. Staying with whatever you’re experiencing.
Now it’s time to become aware of being completely understood… If you like, use your mind’s eye to sense being able to easily communicate clearly, kindly, and honestly…and able to understand what’s being communicated with you, deeply listening, understanding… And noticing what you’re feeling right now.
Stage 3: Relaxing Mentally and Emotionally (Mano Maya Kosha)
It’s time for reflecting on your experience of these scenarios. Trusting in what happened, or what may not have happened…trusting whatever was encountered and revealed. Taking in the sweetness, the surprises, and the paradoxes…and letting areas that may be calling out for further exploration to rise to the surface.
Welcoming the images, the thoughts, the feelings, and all the rest. And knowing that it’s not even necessary to have to fix or solve anything but to simply hold awareness in a gentle, accepting kind of way, relaxing into it, more and more… Reflecting.
Stage 4: Experiencing Intuition (Vijnana Maya Kosha)
And now, continuing to be at ease and resting in awareness, it’s time for welcoming in fresh perspectives, insights, and new understandings…and being ready to receive intuitive guidance that can come now or perhaps later. Being open and receptive now…and having insights about something that’s helpful for you.
Stage 5: Experiencing Joyfulness (Ananda Maya Kosha)
Being in the present, notice whatever you’re experiencing. Perhaps it’s a sense of inner peace, of delight, of deep satisfaction. If it’s helpful, use your mind’s eye to experience feelings of pleasure, a time of contentment, of happiness…
Perhaps a time when you laughed so hard you could barely stop…or the feeling of jumping for joy…bringing the feelings back alive…and noticing how these sensations and feelings can be relived now…
And, if you like, let the memory fade away…not having to rely on events, things, or anything else for being aware of sensations of contentment, joyfulness, and ease, and being in touch with this constant inner joy that is always and already yours.
Stage 6: Atma Awareness
And now expanding your awareness and settling into a feeling of being connected, of belonging, perhaps sensing deep contentment… Oneness and wholeness. Resting in pure, limitless awareness.
[Long, silent pause]
Part 4: Remembering Your Sankalpa
Om shanti—peace, peace, peace… Now it’s time to remember your sankalpa.
Repeat the same sankalpa made at the beginning. Say it with your heart several times… Imagine how it would be if it were already so.
Take a full breath in…and let it go.
Transition Back to Full Awareness
And now become more and more aware of your whole self… What’re you xperiencing?… And sensing that now. What’re you noticing?… Perhaps it’s feeling completely peaceful and quiet, yet so refreshed and full of delight.
Welcoming what’s happening now.
And notice your soft and subtle breathing…in and out…in and out. Becoming more and more aware of the whole body, lying here and experiencing peaceful, relaxing, and joyful energy.
It’s time to come back into full awareness and wakefulness, and to bring back with you all the benefits of yoga nidra to help yourself as well as to benefit others. Becoming more and more aware of this time and place…sensing this moment in time and these surroundings.
You’re becoming very clear-headed and so wide awake, and noticing how you’re feeling totally relaxed and refreshed.
Become increasingly more aware of your presence in these surroundings: what’s above…what’s all around…and sensing what’s below… When you’re ready, begin moving your body, stretching it however you wish to… It’s time to get ready to roll over onto your side…
Okay now, roll over and curl up into a comfortable position.
It’s time to use your arms to bring yourself into a comfortable and upright sitting position… Touch the tips of your thumbs to the tips of your index fingers and rest your hands on your knees. Soak it in.
Blink your eyes open. Inhale deeply and let it go… Notice if you’re smiling.
Remember, the best results come with regular practice. You’ll be blessed with better health, a clear and balanced mind, emotional stability, kindness, and more.
Keep your sankalpa in mind and allow it to take root and flourish in your daily life.
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This script has been crafted with love and formatted in a clear, organized layout, making it easy to read aloud for individuals or groups. It is suitable for personal and professional use, including YouTube videos and monetization, and for voiceover recordings.
Use this script to lead your own Yoga Nidra meditation, edit or alter the script to suit your needs, use it in courses you create and sell, or use it privately with your clients.
- Digital Download
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Frequently Asked Questions
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