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What do you do to relax?

What do you do to relax?

My yoga tutor asked us this question in one of our very first classes and out came the usual answers: A glass of wine, a good read, seeing friends, gardening, walking the dog, watching a film or trashy television, exercise… Then we began to unpick the threads of these answers; is it relaxation or is it distraction?

Lockdown: survive or thrive?

Lockdown: survive or thrive?

Can you remember first hearing about the possibility of our world shutting down? I can. I can remember a nauseous feeling just thinking about schools and nurseries closing and panicking about how I would still be able to work. How would I work with children 

Will yoga help me sleep?

Will yoga help me sleep?

Will yoga help me sleep?
I would say, hand on heart: yoga helps *me* sleep better.
When I attend a yoga class that involves all aspects that I value: centring, postures, breath work, and a relaxation/meditation, this is always followed by good quality sleep.

Best of intentions

Best of intentions

In each of my classes last week I asked the same question at the start: ‘So, who’s got a New Year’s Resolution?’. I was really surprised that not one single person raised their hand in any of those classes. Really surprised! Did that mean nobody had any intentions for the year?

Pavamana Mantra

Pavamana Mantra

Pavamana Mantra – what is it?

Pavamana Mantra is a vedic prayer taken from the Bṛhadāraṇyaka Upaniṣad (1.3.28), and the word ‘Pavamana’ means to be purified. It is now considered a highly important mantra for spiritual awakening and spiritual guidance, and is incorporated into many yoga and meditation practices.

Decluttering: the fascination with a fad

Decluttering: the fascination with a fad

You’re not holding onto an object for a practical reason, but because of something that you will have to acknowledge if you let it go. That’s where the real clutter lies. That’s what is really doing damage or holding you back, not the two thousand books you own or the seven bicycles in the shed.

Exhale Yoga Life: in the spotlight

Exhale Yoga Life: in the spotlight

Today I went to a business networking event with Exhale to talk about what I do. I had a wander around and found a business with a friendly face, ‘So, what do you do?’. The man’s eyes lit up, relieved that someone wanted to talk to him and was actually really engaging. Then it was my turn. Spotlight on me. “I teach yoga…”

And exhale…

And exhale…

My first yoga class, my first real breath and most certainly my first real exhale since birth. With it came the ability to let go…and exhale.

Turning to flowers

Turning to flowers

I studied botany as part of my Genetics degree and find flowers to be hypnotic with all their hidden signals and patterns that only insects can see. The myriad colours and patterns they form. They breathe life into a space and make you pause, creating space in your life.

Seeing the mandala

Seeing the mandala

I’ve always doodled, some of my best artwork has been a doodle. A lot of them have been mandalas of sorts – unwittingly. I place such care and purpose on the rotational symmetry, I didn’t realise this was meditation. Funny how you are drawn to what you need. Once you see them, you notice them everywhere… nature is full of them if you are open to seeing them.