December may mark the closing of the year, but it’s far from a somber time. Across the world, billions of people celebrate holidays like Christmas, Kwanza, and Hanukkah, each of which encourage us to recognize our shared values and practice compassion to all. Even for those who don’t celebrate a specific holiday, love and positivity is still heavy in the air.

It’s a time to cherish friends and family, a time to reflect on the year now passed, and a time to give selflessly to others. It’s the season where the greatest gift is giving, and doing so is an  act that can both change another’s life and improve one’s own karma, an important part of your yoga practice.

Karma Yoga and the Gift of Giving

Alongside other forms of yoga, such as Hatha Yoga (the physical path of asanas and controlling one’s body) and Jnana or Gyana Yoga (the path of wisdom), Karma Yoga is another step toward bringing one’s self to true union. Remember that yoga is about transforming yourself into a dynamic center, non-reliant on outer attainments or perceived desires. It’s by practicing these paths that we reach the realizations that make this union possible.

At it’s core, karma is about seva, a Sanskrit word that translates most literally to “service” but is better defined in this context as “selfless giving.” The practice is about understanding that we live in a reciprocal environment, where both what we give and take matter. Knowing this, we begin to understand to understand the true gift that giving is – it’s a practice that keeps the world and our own self in balance.

This month, take time to practice your karma yoga. Dedicate part of your schedule to helping others, or when you see another in need, be that first person to extend a hand. Reflect on what the year has given you, and remember that those who are given great things should also give great things to others.

Announcing New Gifts from Yogi Surprise

We’re also excited to announce our new gifts subscriptions. With 3, 6, and 12 months options, they make the perfect gift for that special someone. Help them practice a healthier diet or encourage them to get more active through a new yoga routine. Simply add them to your account to keep track of your gifts!