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Banish Negative Thoughts With This 15-Minute Yoga Sequence and Intention

Does life always seem to get in the way of your yoga practice? You don’t need hours to practice – even just a quick 15-minute yoga flow can change your day. And really, all you need is an open mind to find your yogi flow anywhere by practicing Pratipaksha Bhavana!

Pratipaksha Bhavana (Prati-pak-sha Bha-vana) means “replacing the negative with positive.” So, in this 15-minute yoga sequence, you will use the Pratipaksha Bhavana intention to help you cultivate a healthy mindset.

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In this 15-minute yoga sequence, you will use the Pratipaksha Bhavana intention to help you cultivate a healthy mindset.

 
Our lives are fast-paced, constantly changing, and we never seem to make time for ourselves. It’s so easy to let one of our mental or emotional saboteurs help us justify why it’s okay to skip our yoga practice.
 

 
 
It could be as simple as you don’t have a mat, you’re not in the studio, or you have no time that day. The truth is the beauty of yoga is that you can practice it anywhere, anytime – truly whenever you want.

Together let’s work on replacing our negative thoughts with positive ones (Pratipaksha Bhavana) and take 15 minutes (or even five!) just for you.

Whether you’re in your living room, outside, or traveling around the world . . . yoga is for you and you can connect wherever you are.
 
 

Practice Pratipaksha Bhavana With This 15-Minute Yoga Flow

This simple 15-minute yoga flow helps to align your full mind, body, and soul. Give yourself a moment to connect and be mindful of your body. And when you’re ready to start, gently begin your 15-minute yoga practice.

Set your intention around the concept of Pratipaksha Bhavana: how can you embody replacing the negative with the positive on your mat? When negative, judgmental, or fear-based thoughts arise, use your intention to shift from them to an empowered mindset throughout your practice.
 

1. Three-Legged Downward Facing Dog (Tri Pada Adho Mukha Svanasana)

three legged down dog
This variation of Down Dog is mostly seen in Vinyasa flow sequences. It helps build our hip and leg flexibility, while simultaneously strengthening our upper body.

This pose is a great way to start your quick flow since it helps boost energy in the body and connects all elements of thought: fire, air, light, water, and earth.

Before beginning your pose, set your intention: “I am as grounded as I am strong.”

Let’s try it:

  • From Downward Facing Dog (Adho Mukha Svanasana), lift your right foot up and back, keeping your hips squared to the ground
  • Stay active on your grounded foot
  • Activate your core to support your hips
  • Spread your fingers wide and press firmly through your palms and knuckles
  • Distribute your weight evenly across your hands and keep your chest strong and lifted

 

2. High Lunge (Alanasana)

High Lunge
High Lunge helps us bring awareness to the body and breath to build confidence with power.

Set your intention: “I ebb, I flow, I change, I grow.”

Let’s try it:

  • From Three-Legged Downward Facing Dog, let your lifted foot come in between your hands
  • Inhale and lift your arms overhead into High Lunge
  • Square your hips so that your frontal hip points equally face toward the front of the mat
  • Maintain the integrity of your knee above your ankle
  • Lengthen your right leg, pointing your heel toward the back of the mat
  • Be mindful not to arch your lower back
  • Repeat your intention, find your balance, and focus, noticing where your mind goes

 
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3. Goddess Pose (Utkata Konasana)

Goddess
Goddess Pose is not only empowering but also mirrors grace and strength. It’s a great way to incorporate our power with our creative beauty.

This pose encourages the flow of prana (our breath and life-force), and the longer one holds this position, the faster they are able to gain confidence and focus.

It’s also said that since a lot of our stress gets accumulated in our hips, this pose helps reduce our overall stress levels – yet another way to practice Pratipaksha Bhavana!

Before beginning your pose, set your intention: “I am creating my own safe space to be me.”

Let’s try it:

  • From your High Lunge, transition your heels 45 degrees to the back long edge of your mat and let your chest square off to the front long edge
  • Lower your hips with both knees pointing out and press your heels into the mat
  • Lift your heart and tuck your hips under to engage your core and protect your lower back
  • Bring your hands to your heart center for eight to 10 breaths

 

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4. Warrior II (Virabhadrasana II)

warrior2
Warrior Poses were said to be named after the great hero warrior, Virabhadra, from Hindu mythology.

These poses were created to empower our strength and steadiness and the fierce determination to hold with integrity.

Transitioning from our grace and stability to our Warrior Poses subconsciously takes our outer strength into our inner power, making this a perfect next pose in our 15-minute yoga flow.

Set your intention: “I choose to do the right thing under difficult circumstances.”

Let’s try it:

  • From Goddess Pose, slowly bend your front knee 90 degrees and straighten your back leg
  • Make sure that your front heel lines up with the middle of the back arch of your foot
  • Lift and lengthen your arms so they are shoulder height, strengthening your shoulders and arms
  • Gaze out past your front middle finger
  • Gently bend a little deeper into your front knee, keeping it lined up over your ankle
  • Press into the knife-edge of your back foot and feel extension outward from all your fingers

 

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5. Triangle Pose (Trikonasana)

Triangle trikonasana
Triangle Pose is a great way to continue opening the hips while also stretching the back body.

This pose represents power, divinity, fire, heart, mountains, prosperity, harmony, and royalty so we wanted to make sure we added this pose into our 15-minute yoga flow focusing on Pratipaksha Bhavana!

Before beginning your pose, set your intention: “I am stable. I am grace.”

Let’s try it:

  • From Warrior II Pose, slowly straighten your front leg and carefully turn your back foot out 90 degrees
  • Make sure that your front heel aligns with the inner arch of your back foot
  • Keep both legs straight. Ground through your feet and lift up through your thighs
  • Look toward the front of your mat and form a “T” with your arms
  • Inhale and reach forward with your front hand and hinge forward at your front hip
  • Lengthen your spine over your front thigh
  • Place your front hand on the ground or on a block at the outer edge of your front foot
  • Rotate your torso to the long edge of the mat and lift your opposite arm toward the sky
  • Look up toward your lifted hand

 

6. Revolved Lunge Pose (Parivrtta Anjaneyasana)

Revolved Lunge 1
While building our strength and flexibility, we don’t want to leave out a strong twisting pose from our sequence, which helps increase stamina.

Twisting poses help create awareness and tone, and reduce blockages.

Before beginning your pose, set your intention: “I am healing.”

Let’s try it:

  • From Triangle Pose, cartwheel your hands to the inside of your front foot, squaring off your hips to the ground and stacking your back heel over the ball of your back foot
  • Lift your right hand up to the sky to find a gentle twist
  • Draw your inner thighs together for a more secure twist
  • Push through your back heel
  • Open your chest and gaze up at your lifted fingertips

 

7. Seated Forward Fold Pose (Paschimottanasana)

Seated Forward Fold
Finishing off this 15-minute yoga sequence, it only seems fitting that we end with a seated forward fold.

Known as one of the best asanas for the entire body, Paschimottanasana affects everything from our head to our toes.

This pose not only tones our whole body, it also helps calm the brain, relieve stress, soothe headaches, and reduce fatigue.

What a perfect way to embrace Pratipaksha Bhavana in our quick, do-anywhere 15-minute yoga flow!

Set your intention: “Pratipaksha Bhavana.”

Let’s try it:

  • Find your way to a comfortable seat on the floor
  • Stretch your legs out in front of you, sitting up tall
  • Take your peace sign fingers and reach and wrap them around or toward your big toes
  • Inhale and lift up through your spine, moving from your pelvis as you begin to lean forward
  • Keep lifting up and away with the crown of your head and then gently fold over your legs to a place that’s comfortable for you

 
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8. Repeat

Repeat the entire sequence on the other side. 🙂
 

9. Corpse Pose (Savasana)

End your Pratipaksha Bhavana practice with a moment of silent reflection and meditation in Savasana.

Let’s try it:

  • Come to lay down on your back
  • Close your eyes and surrender your weight
  • Stay for a few minutes to absorb the effects of your 15-minute yoga practice

 
 

Use Pratipaksha Bhavana to Practice This 15-Minute Yoga Sequence Anytime, Anywhere

Let yourself take your time with this 15-minute yoga sequence and flow. Repeat on both sides as many times as you’d like – you get to decide the pace of your flow.

Now it’s time to reflect:

  • How did your practice go?
  • Did you enjoy working with Pratipaksha Bhavana?
  • What thoughts came up while you moved through your 15-minute flow?
  • Were you able to use this intention to keep your mindset positive and empowered?

    Please share your experience in the comments below – we love hearing from you!

    Change Your Thinking, Change Your Life: This Is Why You Need Positive Affirmations

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    Comments

    wonderful comments!

Leah Ward

Leah is a Certified Authentic Development Coach for Authentically Connected, studio co-owner of Barre-Up Raleigh and creator of LivingWild™️ Yoga. She has turned her passion for helping individuals into a brand, career, and life purpose. Leah helps you bring mind + body connections through wellness, self awareness and mindfulness to create your own path to LivingWild™️ and be your true authentic self.

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