The five P's
The P's were introduced by Swami Sivananda in the Saraswati Yoga tradition to balance all aspects of the human being. The five P's are known as proper exercise, proper breathing, proper relaxation, proper diet, and positive thinking. The wonderful thing about these set of principles is that they can used universally. If you are not into yoga then other activities and adjustments can be made. Let's take a look at each principle and explore how to apply the frame work to suit you.
As this refers to the strengthening and regulating the physical body it refers to yoga postures known as asanas, in essence there only five directions to move the body - forward bending, backward bending, side bending, inversions and twisting movements. If you are an outdoor person then know that you have a wide range of activities activities to choose from.
Proper breathing refers to the quality of inhalation and the quality of exhalation. In yoga, it is considered that life is base not on the amount years but the amount of breathes we take. Science has estimated that humans breathe 21,600 times per day.. The practice of pranayama (breath expansion) is used to regulate the breath and to slow it down by introducing breath retention as a powerful technique to expand ones life force.
Proper relaxation is just as important as exercise, as this allows the body to revitalise. The position of shavana allows the liquid of the body to stablise, allow the breath to be natural and observe the relaxation taking place. A particular technique that one can tap into is the practice of yoga nidra. It is a guided relaxation of the physical body and the subtle body.
Proper diet plays a very important role because it is directly connected with nutrients absorption and generating our energy. On a subtle level it affects our mind and consciousness. There will be certain ingredients depending on your body type that will enhance the state of dullness, lethargy, certain ingredients of generating a busy mind and a sense of lightness and clarity.
Positive thinking refers to out look in all aspects of life and our activities. Sometimes we cannot help our negative encounters however, yoga teaches us how to contemplate such experiences and how to release them in a healthy way. Meditation allows us to reflect our daily experiences, it also helps us to think about our responses.