Family. Kids. Pets. Work. Neighbors. Yikes!
So many obligations take our time and our energy. It’s not that we don’t love doing all of these things, but why it is so much easier to take care of others rather than taking care of ourselves? My teacher, Deepak Chopra has a term that really resonates with me, Radical Well-being!
That’s want I want—not just to live well—I want radical well-being! But how do we get there?
I believe there are five pillars of radical well-being:
- Get enough sleep
- Get outside in nature and move!
- Eat fresh, real food
- Cultivate healthy emotions
Sleep is so important. It’s where your body regenerates, restores, and repairs. I’m not talking about just a few hours of sleep a night, I’m talking about a good solid 6 to 8 hours where you go through the different stages of sleep, from wakefulness, light sleep, REM sleep, and deep sleep. Each stage has it’s own benefit and spending time each night in each stage is important to our radical well-being. So shut your electronics off early and set a sleep routine that sets you up for a successful night’s sleep. If you have trouble sleeping, never forget the power of a good nap!
Getting outside in nature allows you to breathe and move into the five elements that are around you AND within you! Take your shoes off and go earthing. Connecting to the Earth’s natural energy is foundational for vibrant health. When you make direct contact with the surface of the Earth your body receives a charge of energy that makes you feel better, fast. Take a walk by the ocean and listen to the sounds of the waves. Feel the warmth of the sun on your body. Ride a bike and feel the wind on your skin. Listen to the primordial sounds of nature: birds singing, waves lapping, leaves blowing. Feel the incredible amount of space around you and within you! And lastly don’t forget to look up at the night sky, it’s so beautiful!
Meditation is a wonderful way to find stillness and quiet the non-stop conversations inside your head. Although many think that there is complete silence in meditation, it’s a misnomer. Meditation is not complete silence, but rather time where you recognize the thoughts that you have and find the stillness between them.
I’ve heard that prayer is where you talk with God, and meditation is where you listen.
Food is an important part of radical well-being. Fresh food found in its most natural state; non-processed, non-packaged, non-altered. I’m looking forward to our farmers markets opening soon so I can support our local farmers and eat local produce! I love this quote from Hippocrates: “Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food”. My Ayurveda training has helped me to understand this so much better.
Lastly, cultivating healthy emotions is an important part of radical well-being. Gratitude is the single greatest way to cultivate healthy emotions. It’s a powerful practice that we can use to expand our happiness, create loving relationships, and improve our health. When you’re feeling down, take a few moments to think about what you are grateful for in that moment. It takes practice, but it’s truly worth it!
I’d love to hear how you’re creating radical well-being in your life!
P.S. Are you looking for a way to jump start your radical well-being? Join me and a wonderful group for an Ayurveda Retreat at theBeach, April 27-29th. When you take time away from your every day routine and all of your commitments, to take time for YOU- you begin to create radical well-being.
There is no better time or place than right here, right now!
Space is limited – only 1 bedroom is currently available.
Commuter spots are available. Get everything included in the retreat, with the exception of the accommodations.
Click here for more information.
Ah, spring is nearly here! With the changing of the seasons, It’s a wonderful time for letting go of the old and welcoming in the new. What better time to detox and declutter your mind, body, and daily life? As life gets busier and busier, we tend to get distracted and before you know it, the house is a mess, we’ve forgotten about our meditation practice, and we’re feeling tired and anxious all the time.
Don’t worry, it happens to the best of us!
Here are some simple things you can do to get back on track and get started with your spring cleaning, Ayurveda style:
Start with your closet. Go through each and every item of clothing and donate anything you have not worn in the past year. Take the time to try things on and donate the items that do not currently fit you or your style. Store your winter clothes neatly and in an organized way so it will be fun to take them out next year. Bring out your warm weather clothes and arrange them so they can be easily seen and accessed.
Move to the common areas. Your goal is to clean and declutter as you go. Move your knicknacks and furniture while you clean and think about what you can live without. Donate anything that is causing you distraction and overstimulation; anything that is not positively serving you. Create a peaceful space that allows you the space to breathe easily.
Organize your papers: bills, coupons, books, other paperwork. Shred and recycle anything you do not need and organize using a filing system.
Spring is a great time to begin, or restart, your meditation practice. Once you have your house in order, designate a specific space to meditate. This could be as simple as placing a pillow on the floor, or creating a space with decorations that make you feel good. This space should be kept orderly and neat. Set an intention to spend at least 10 minutes meditating each day.
Challenge yourself to a week-long media fast. Eliminate social media, tv, social calls, text messaging, or other ways that you connect to technology. This is a great way to de-clutter your mind, creating space for a more peaceful state of being.
Take time to move your body this spring. The temperatures are warming up and the days are longer, so make a conscious effort to get outside and play whenever possible. Find some form of exercise that you enjoy like running, walking, hiking, swimming, biking, dancing, or yoga and commit to doing some form of movement for at least 30 minutes a day. Ayurveda suggests that the best time to exercise is in the early morning, before you eat breakfast and shower. The next best time is in the early evening, before dinner. Choose a time that works well for you and make yourself a priority.
Challenge yourself to a simple detox. For example, for one week try eliminating anything white, like sugar, dairy, and flour. Instead, eat organic fruits, vegetables, and healthy grains. Sip herbal teas and water throughout the day.
You don’t have to do it all at once! Take small daily steps to create more space in your life this spring. If you feel like you need a deeper dive into how to de-clutter your mind, body, and spirit the Ayurvedic way, join Maribeth this weekend for her workshop “Ayurveda: It’s Time to Spring Clean”.
You’ll learn Ayurvedic practices that help clean out the heavy energy of winter and make way for the fresh, fertile ground of spring. The workshop includes an Ayurvedic lunch.
Click here for more information and to reserve your space.
Happy spring cleaning!
Ayurveda is a mind-body health system developed thousands of years ago by Indian sages. It is a science of life (Ayur=life; Veda=science or knowledge) that is more than a system for treating illness. Rather, it focuses on expanding personal awareness, bringing it into balance, and then extending that balance to the body.
According to Ayurvedic philosophy the mind and body are intextricably connected. Because of this deep connection, nothing has more power to heal the body than the mind.
For example, when you meditate you are using your awareness to restore balance in your mind and (since the mind and body are inseparable) that balance spreads to your body. Your heart and breath rate slow, your body decreases the production of stress hormones, and you increase the production of neurotransmitters than enhance wellbeing. This means you literally have the ability to change the functioning of your body in a healthy way!
Ayurveda offers many practices for expanding self awareness and inner balance. Here are a few of them that you might consider incorporating into your life:
Identify and understand your unique mind-body type.
Ayurveda is a personalized approach to health. Knowing your mind-body type can guide you to make the right choices for diet, exercise, supplements, and all other aspects of your lifestyle.
Eat a colorful, flavorful diet.
Foods that are blue, purple, red, green, or orange are plentiful in antioxidants and nutrients that enhance immunity and health. To enure that you are getting a balanced diet, it is also recommended that you include the six Ayurvedic tastes in each meal: sweet, salty, sour, pungent, bitter, and astringent.
Get enough restful sleep.
When we sleep, our body is repairing and rejuvinating itself. To support your body, it is recommended that you get between six to eight hours of un-aided, restful sleep each night. If you wake up feeling energetic and vibrant, you know you had a restful night’s sleep.
Live in tune with nature.
What you need and what you want should not be in conflict. When you are in balance, you desire the things that nurture your health and life in a positive way. You focus on what you need in order to stay in harmony with your body and mind.
Tune into your body.
Tune into the messages your body sends you. Pay attention to your comforts and discomforts, to how your body feels. Consider what choices you should make, based on what your body is telling you.
Strengthen your digestion.
When the body is able to regularly and completely digest the nutritional, emotional, and sensory information it takes in, it is happy and healthy. Good digestion improves perception, physical strength, and immunity and creates feelings of vitality.
Do not waste your energy by struggling or trying to force things to go your way. Let love motivate your actions. When you let love guide the way your energy will expand and you will have more of it.
Join your friends at Inlet Yoga for the “Ayurveda: It’s Time to Spring Clean!” workshop on March 17, 2018.
Click here to register.
As we transition from summer to fall we experience new, yet familiar, environmental sensations. The air smells different, the winds feel crisper and the days get shorter. It is a time to prepare for change and often evokes thoughts of sitting around a fire and enjoying warm, soul nourishing meals. Fall also brings a prominence of Vata. According to Ayurveda, Vata-the air element-has rough, windy, erratic, cool and light qualities.
Since fall brings feelings of change it is helpful to find stability and balance by being grounded and warm, with awareness of Vata. This is achieved by incorporating the right foods and positive lifestyle choices; by balancing your own internal environment with the environment of Mother Nature.
Vata’s airy influence can stimulate the following:
You might also experience the following mental symptoms:
-desire to be more carefree and light
If you are aware of any of these symptoms, or even if you are not, make an effort to nourish the body and mind in order to maintain balance during the fall season. This can be done by incorporating warm, substantive and nourishing cooked foods (casseroles, soups, slow cooker meals, stews, steamed or roasted vegetables). It is best to eat fruits and vegetables that are locally grown and harvested in season. Check out this Seasonal Food Guide to learn what foods are in season in your area (U.S. only).
Fall is an exciting time because it represents transition and change, which is good. Diet is something that you can control and that will help you ease into this change with a balanced mind, a strong body, and a warm heart.
To learn more about how to find awareness and balance through Ayurveda, contact Maribeth MacKenzie, Certified Chopra Center Ayurveda Perfect Health Practitioner
Engaging in outdoor sensory experiences is an important part of Ayurveda because it is believed to help heal the body and mind. Spending time and being mindful in nature can balance your dosha and promote well-being. Here are some examples of outdoor sensory experiences that can help you balance your dosha, or mind-body type:
If you find that your mind is racing and you can’t settle it, you may be feeling ungrounded. When this happens, embrace earth’s stability. Go for a walk on the earth, grass, or sand (preferably barefoot) while being mindful of your feet. Allow them to absorb the nourishment and stability that the earth offers you. Lay on the ground, and as the rays of the warm sun blanket you, remember that it is the source of life on earth.
If you are feeling overheated and irritable, spend time near natural bodies of water. Take a slow walk while being mindful of the sound and cooling effects of water; allow the water to calm and soothe you. If you do not live near natural bodies of water, take a walk in nature or lie in the grass in your yard or a park. Think of all that nature provides for you and feel gratitude for the plants, sky, and earth that surround and support you.
If you are feeling dull and lethargic, focus on the space and air of the breath. Take a brisk walk or run in nature. Be mindful of the infinite sky and space that is unbounded. Inhale the life force that surrounds you and consciously recognize that it is the breath that gives you life. Picture the breath coming into your lungs and heart and flowing to the rest of your body. Consider all that your breath does for you every second of the day, without your conscious attention.
Joining your friends at Inlet Yoga for Sunrise Beach Yoga is a great way to balance all dosha types. Click here to view the times and locations.
Understanding your dosha type, and using your natural environment to balance it, can help you experience well-being. Learn more about the benefits of Ayurveda and your specific mind-body type to delve even deeper into wellness.
Discover how to balance your mind-body type even further by participating in a personalized 7-day Ayurveda program at Inlet Yoga. Click here for more information.
The main philosophy of yoga is that the mind, body, and spirit are one and cannot be separated.
It is no surprise then, that if we are feeling out of balance in one of those areas, we feel dis-ease. In order to maintain balance, you must be mindful and find harmony in the way you eat, breathe, drink and live.
Toxic thoughts and emotions can change the chemistry of your brain, and if chronic can even change the pathways in your brain.
Have you ever experienced abdominal pain when you are upset? This happens because when your brain is alarmed by an emotion, it sends signals to other parts of your body, especially your intestines, where functioning can shift due to exposure to any kind of toxicity. What is more, if you don’t deal with the toxicity in your body caused by negative thoughts and emotions, your experiences can get stored in your memory and can stay there for a long time. This is one reason why it is not easy to let go of childhood traumas; because the memories have been stored for so long. Learn more
The good news is that through mindfully cleansing your body, spirit and mind, it is possible to reverse toxicity in your physical, emotional, mental, and environmental life.
This month at Inlet Yoga, we are working on clearing toxicity in our minds, bodies, and spirits through a Group Juice Cleanse that will include detoxifying yoga classes. We also offer an on-going Individualized Ayurveda Consultation and Cleanse with Maribeth MacKenzie, Certified Chopra Center Ayurveda Perfect Health Practitioner.
Click here to jump start your mindfulness practice using Oprah & Deepak’s 21-Day Meditation Experience.
Remember, the work of yoga is never done and must be carried off the mat into your world in order for you to receive all the benefits. Be mindful of the ways you eat, breathe, drink and live to heal yourself from the inside out.
Be patient, gracious, and forgiving with yourself and take it one OM at a time.