Yoga, as laid out in Patanjali’s Yoga Sutra, is an eight-limbed path. The first two limbs of yoga, the Yamas and Niyamas, form a moral code of conduct and an ethical guide to living. The Yamas are the don’ts; the Niyamas are the dos.
As described by Yoga Basics, the second limb of yoga, or the Niyamas, helps people maintain a positive environment in which to grow and encourages self-discipline and inner-strength. While the Yamas lay the foundation for ethical marketing strategies, the Niyamas help marketers develop ethical professional skills.
So what are the Niyamas and how will they help you professionally? Let’s explore.
Yogis (and marketing practitioners) should seek to remove impurities and negative influences in both external environments and internal bodies. Have you heard the saying “You are the company you keep”? It’s true! Surround yourself with positive mentors, peers, employees, and clients and you will, in turn, become more positive.
Positivity leads to productivity. Productivity leads to success. Seem daunting? Don’t worry. You can practice Saucha in the simplest of ways, like cleaning off your desk. A clean, uncluttered workspace encourages clean, uncluttered work.
Contentment promotes inner happiness. Free your mind of expectations. Focus on the present moment and trust the journey. Don’t worry about future projects. Concentrate on current projects. By living and working in the present moment, you can minimize stress and avoid becoming overwhelmed.
Tapas promotes both hard work and effort. When applied with Samtosha, Tapas promotes wise effort. This focuses your energy so you can work harder and smarter. The focused energy produced through this practice helps you replace unproductive habits with those that will better serve you and your work.
In order to become better marketers, we must always be learning. In addition to theoretical and practical marketing knowledge, self-reflection is a necessity. What skills do you possess? What needs improvement? By acknowledging your strengths as well as your weakness, you can grow your skillset and grow your business.
Ishvara pranidhana (Surrender to God)
Traditionally, Ishvara panidhana instructs students to surrender to God. While ‘god’ can have different meanings to different people, this Niyama asks for something simple – dedication to something greater than yourself. A marketer can use this Niyama as a reminder to remove ego and self-centeredness. Don’t be too afraid or too proud to take advice or ask for help. Dedicate yourself to sharing your ethical marketing practice with others and together we can remove the negative stigma that sometimes surrounds the marketing industry.
Looking for more information on using yoga to guide an ethics-based marketing strategy? Be sure to read our blog on the Yamas if you haven’t yet. We also recommend printing our downloadable infographic to keep a reminder of the Niyamas at your desk.