Soulful Recipes for Stressful Times

Soulful Recipes for Stressful Times

Healthy Snacks for Stressful Times

Soulful Recipes to Nourish your Body and Mind

“Your Body Is Your Temple.

Keep it pure and clean for the soul to reside in”. 

– B. K. S. Iyengar

 

 

Hi! I’m Liz.  In this Guest Post I take a deeper look at how high sugar snacks impact the brain and show you some easy, healthy homemade snacks

 

More than ever our body and mind asks us for a little extra care. It’s not only how and what we eat, it is also about our mindset and mental health.

 

Why do I Comfort-Eat?

Have you ever found yourself starring inside the fridge, looking for food, eating any convenient snack you can find?  I for myself can assure you that it happened to me many times before.

 

But what is it that leads us to “comfort-feeling-eating”?

 

Deep within we’re longing for something that fills us, that soothes the pain or calms the mind.

 

Especially in times when we find ourselves home alone, without social contacts, some of us lost their jobs … our longing for something that replaces the missing pieces is stronger than ever

 

The sweetness of being all by myself I feel empty – I fill it up with food 

 

I think we all know the scene from “Bridged Jones’ Diary”; Shattered and emotionally overwhelmed on the sofa, crying, hugging a jar of ice cream, singing the pain out loud to the most emotional songs. I guess that’s how most of us feel at some point these days or some may already have repeated this scene in perfection. And I totally feel you as some days I don’t feel different at all. 

 

But why not replace the sugar bomb with a healthy energy boost?

 

Our brain cries for a reward and the biggest reward for our brain is: Sugar. 

 

Instead of nurturing the body with nutritious food, we prefer comfort-food that is convenient, ready to eat and that makes us feel better for a little while. 

 

Unfortunately the most convenient comfort-foods are often those with the highest amount of sugar and not nutritious at all. It is also proven that sugar has high impacts on inflammatory reactions in the body; and this is what we don’t need at all. 

 

Dopamine  – Messenger of your nervous system 

There are days when we feel low and the routine of staying home challenges us. We need an extra boost of Dopamine and some creativity to keep the body and mind healthy and attuned.

 

Sugar has a high impact on the brain and leads to Dopamine production in the body. Dopamine functions as a hormone and neurotransmitter at the same time. As a neurotransmitter the nervous system uses it to communicate between the nerve cells.

 

It affects the brain at the reward system which is responsible for feelings, emotions and our behaviour towards pleasurable stimuli such as shopping, food, sex, alcohol, drugs, etc. 

 

When we activate the reward system it leads to distraction from unpleasant feelings and painful emotions.

 

Do you remember the last time you fell in love: you feel excited, more than alive and over enthusiastic. Your brain is in constant reward mode and this hormone cocktail prevents you from negative emotions, conflicts, etc.

 

Once its high level drops the feeling of being high above everything starts to disappear, you start to see your partner with different eyes and without the rose-colored glasses. The same happens when your child has too much sugar before bedtime. The nervous system is highly activated and ready to conquer the world.

 

 

When your Dopamine level is low you may feel:

  • Reduced ability to feel pleasure
  • Sugar and carbohydrate cravings
  • Lack of focus and concentration
  • Feeling bored, apathetic, depressed
  • Low drive and motivation
  • Cold hands and feet
  • Low libido

 

 

Foods naturally high in tyrosine an amino acid that is needed to produce Dopamine:

Apple Strawberries Blueberries Watermelon Raw, Dark Chocolate  Almonds Eggs  Beetroot  Chia Seeds Green vegetables  Dates  Banana Walnuts  Pineapple

Home-Made Recipes for Healthy Snacks & Treats

If you’re craving something sweet,  let’s get creative together with a whole bunch of delicious, nutritious foods!

Put on your favourite playlist, I can highly recommend Francie’s playlist or you can also tune into mine, put your hair up to a bun and let’s get ready 🙂

1. Peanut Butter Energy Balls 

 

1 cup crunchy peanut butter (unsweetened) 1/2 cup old fashioned rolled oats 2 tbsp shredded Coconut  1 tbsp Chia seeds 1 tbsp honey  1/4 cup dark chocolate chips  1 tsp vanilla extract 

 

  1. Mix all ingredients together. It should be a well mixed, sticky mass.
  2. Let it sit for at least 30 min in the fridge.
  3. Mix again and form little round balls. 
  4. Store them in the fridge in a closed jar or box. 

2. Chocolate Cashew Energy Balls 

 

Filling 8 pitted Medjool dates (or 16 small dates) 1 cup unsalted cashews  1/2 cup unsalted pistachios  1 tablespoon raw cacao powder or dark chocolate  1 teaspoon cinnamon 

 

Coating  1 tsp coconut oil  100g dark chocolate  1/2 cup crushed pistachios

 

  1. Mix all ingredients for the filling in a food processor. It is a very sticky mass that you might have to replace the mass from time to time in the food processor. 
  2. Mix until you have a mass with some crunchy nut pieces.
  3. Form into balls and place them at least 30 min in the fridge. (If the mass is too sticky you can place it in the fridge first and form the balls after) 

 

  1. For the filling, melt the chocolate and stir in the coconut oil.
  2. Dip the cold energy balls into the coating and sprinkle with crushed pistachios.

 

All energy balls are storable in the fridge for up to one week. 

 

3. Coconut Chia Pudding with Mango Purée 

 

2 tbsp Chia Seeds 2 tbsp Shredded Coconut  150 ml Coconut Milk  75 ml Almond Milk (you can replace it with any of your preferred type of milk)  1/2 – 1 tbsp Coconut Sugar ( or any other sweetener) 1 tsp Cinnamon  1 tsp Vanilla Extract 

 

1 ripe Mango

 

 

Chia Pudding

Mix all ingredients together in a bowl. Make sure the chia seeds doesn’t stick together or stick on the ground  Cover the bowl and place it for at least 2 hours in the fridge. (Best over night but not necessary)

 

For some extra sparkle you can add some matcha 😉

 

Mango Purée 

  1. Cut the Mango in half 
  2. Use the following trick to get out the flesh the easiest way 🙂 
  3. In a food processor mix the flesh until it is a smooth purée.
  4. Place the purée in the fridge 
  5. Before serving top the Chia Pudding with Mango Purée. Voila! 

 

Coconut Chia Pudding is storable in the fridge for up to 3-4 days. 

  1. Mix until you have a mass with some crunchy nut pieces.
  2. Form into balls and place them at least 30 min in the fridge. (If the mass is too sticky you can place it in the fridge first and form the balls after) 

 

  1. For the filling, melt the chocolate and stir in the coconut oil.
  2. Dip the cold energy balls into the coating and sprinkle with crushed pistachios.

 

All energy balls are storable in the fridge for up to one week. 

 

4. Sweet & Salty Quinoa

1 cup white Quinoa  1/2 cup Coconut Milk  1 1/2 cups Almond Milk (or any other)  1/2 – 1 Banana  4 chopped Dates  1 tsp Cinnamon  1/2 tsp Nutmeg  1 pinch of Salt 

 

  1. Rinse Quinoa with cold water. 
  2. In a pot mix all the ingredients and stir until simmer. Cut Banana in slices and add to the Quinoa/Milk mix.
  3. Cook over low heat for 15 minutes. Stir from time to time.
  4. Turn off the heat and let it sit for a little while.
  5. Place Quinoa in a bowl. 
  6. Serve either hot or cold.

 

Add any topping you like. I love Mango-Passion Fruit Purée on top.

 

 

5. Watermelon Pineapple Salad 

Watermelon  Pineapple  Fresh Peppermint 

 

  1. Cut watermelon and Pineapple in cubes.
  2. Chop Mint leaves.
  3. Mix in a bowl and enjoy 🙂

 

6. Ginger Turmeric Immune Boost

 

1-2 Organic Ginger Root  1 tsp ground or fresh Turmeric  4 Peppercorns  1-2 tsp Honey  1/2 – 1 Lime  1,5 liter Water 

 

  1. Cut Ginger in slices and place in a pot.
  2. Add Water, Peppercorns and Turmeric and cook for at least 15 min.
  3. Take the pot from the oven and add Lime and Honey.
  4. If it’s too spicy you can add water or a little bit more honey.

 

Pepper is used to activate Curcuma in Turmeric. 🙂 It has anti inflammatory and antioxidant effects. 

7. Beetroot-Apple Smoothie

 

1/2 Beetroot 1 Apple  1 Carrot 1-2 cups Coconut water or normal water  1 tbsp Lime Juice 

  1. Mix all ingredients in a mixer. 
  2. Enjoy! 🙂 

 

If you like it spicy you can add a little piece of fresh Ginger.   

re honey.

 

Pepper is used to activate Curcuma in Turmeric. 🙂 It has anti inflammatory and antioxidant effects. 

Hope you enjoy these delightful recipes!

Sending you so much love.

XOXO

 

***

Thanks for reading. 

Please remember to sign up for our Love-Letter to

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that we only share with our subscribers!

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***What’s your favourite healthy recipe from this post?***

We LOVE Hearing from You.Let us know!

 

Liz Topkaya

Guest Blogger, @Liztopkaya

Practical tools for a Purposeful Pause: Self-Retreat Tools & Inspirations

Practical tools for a Purposeful Pause: Self-Retreat Tools & Inspirations

Practical Tools for a Purposeful Pause

Self-Retreat Resources & Inspirations

 

“To love means to open ourselves to the negative as well as the positive – to grief, sorrow, and disappointment as well as to joy, fulfilment, and an intensity of consciousness we did not know was possible before”― Rollo May



Love and New Moon blessings beautiful soul.

How are you in this time of Corona?

Many things I imagine….

All is welcome here.  I feel it’s super important to acknowledge and allow the full spectrum of thoughts and feelings that are arising within you, and to know and trust that

However you’re feeling is totally and completely valid and ok. 

Being present to what is, in these ever-unfolding times, can truly help to create the conditions in which you can maintain an open heart in the face of the ever-unfolding challenges, gifts and opportunities of the NEW now.

New moons are a powerful time to reflect, to cultivate our inner gardens – weeding and plant seeds and it’s a cosmically supported time to pray. 

Today, I invite you to offer a simple prayer:
 

Close your eyes for a moment
Soften your belly
Take a deep breath in and out
Feel into your heart
and offer a simple prayer from your heart:

May I, my loved ones, and all beings be 
happy
healthy
balanced
at ease
respectful
loving
kind
…and anything else you feel to add…
in this time.


This is a simple way for us to be in service to the highest good.

Thank you for doing that. 


We are living in truly extraordinary times.


The world is changing in a unique, profound and unprecedented way. 

This moment is calling for a paradigm shift – a new way of seeing and being in the world,

a way that embraces connection, community, co-creation, compassion and love.

It is incredible to see people from all over the world:

unifying, adapting, sharing, releasing, respecting, rising, awakening,

harmonising, integrating, reflecting, transforming,

grieving, dreaming, praying, evolving,

and demonstrating such a unified field of compassion for the most vulnerable.


Self-Connect: Practical Ideas to take a Purposeful Pause


To best approach this time of transition with balance,strength and ease,

it’s important to prepare ourselves spiritually, physically and emotionally.

What better way to stay strong, centred, balanced, calm, connected and at ease than with Yoga, Music & Meditation?!

We all have an opportunity right now to take pause, while Mother Earth takes a much needed breath. 

We get to choose mindful moments to reflect, educate ourselves, stay healthy and happy. 

I highly recommend that you create a daily rhythm & schedule for yourself to practice, learn, do nothing, exercise…  Very grounding!  Within that framework, there are infinite ways to self-connect. For example:

– Journal – 5 mins a day is plenty.  Get it flowing.  These are historic times.
– Listen to music – Sing along, dance alone, Yoga along
– Call a friend from way-back-when,
– Check in with your karma Yoga buddy – if you were a student here before…

– Pick oracle cards: I love these right now
 Wisdom of the Oracle – Collette Baron
– Take an online class
– Meditate

– Do Yoga – Stay grounded and open in your body.


Practice with us:

 

Our Live Class & Conversation Podcast

 

“How to Balance the Chakras”

Check out Part 1 / 5  of our Balancing All-Level Chakras Series: 90 min Muladhara Flow – Balancing Chakra 1, complete with contemplation questions, singing, mudra, mantra and movement…recorded live at our recent 200 Hour Yoga Teacher Training. 

 

Make sure to Subscribe to our podcast

 to stay up to the minute with our latest podcast release for the chakra series, and fresh conversations here too!

 

Inspiration:

Music & Playlists

 

A New Vision – Temple Step Project feat. Darpan

This is my anthem of the Now. I have literally listened to this track every single day for the past 7 days straight.  My friend Tomi has challenged me to memorise something in this Self-Retreat time to exercise my brain, and I’ve chosen this.  What do you think?

 

Love & Inspiration Maha Yoga Playlist

3.5 + hours of some of my favourite curating listening & practicing music Magic

 

Ecstatic Dance Playlist

Hours and hours of some of my favourite Ecstatic Dance DJ sets

Stay-at-home dance parties are the new black.  Get into it. Move your body and lift your spirit.

 

Reading Recommendations

 

Here’s a list of some of my favourite books on Yoga and Awakening.

 

Have some other great suggestions? Hit Reply and let me know what you’re reading!



 

Private Sessions & Online Classes
with Francie 

Life-Guidance / Mentoring
Yoga & Meditation
Singing & Vocal Awakening


The Thailand Yoga studio is now closed indefinitely, but you can still practice with me in the jungle for now!

I’m excited to be devoting my time and energy to connecting with you more deeply via private sessions and online classes on ZOOM. 

Stay Tuned…I’ll keep you posted about online classes coming soon,

and for now, you are welcome to book a private session with me here:
 

Private Yoga |  Meditation | Life Guidance | Vocal Activation Sessions

Use promocode “BeHereNow” to save 25% | Sliding Scale also available in this time of need.


Please shoot me a message if you have any questions, or want to see if a session with me is right for you.



Moving forward – I’d LOVE your Help! 


It feel spacious and exciting to play with the possibility of creating and thriving in a new way. and I’d love your input.  Which of these lights you up?  

O Scheduled Live-streamed classes & Events
O Online Course: At-Home Retreat or Bhakti Flow: Mantra & Chanting Magic
O Monthly Membership: Fresh Weekly Love & Inspirations? + Live Workshops?
Check out our Love & Inspiration archive full of sweet curated Quotes, Music, Books, Blogs, Talks, Podcasts and more… in 2019’s Experiment here
O 10 or 21 Day Challenges: Yoga, Meditation or Singing 
O Something else?

Many options. 🙂 Please reply and let me know your thoughts. I’s LOVE to hear from you.


CONGRATULATIONS to our 2020 YTT Grads!

Big warm Thank YOU and Congratulations to
Sophie, Ida, Kathryn, Karen, Melanie, Alicia, Elisa, Rose.
Could not be more proud and happy to welcome these bright new star Yoga Teachers and Spiritual Leaders  into the world. 
Watch out for magical unfoldings with this stellar crew of empowered women!

On a personal note, thank you.


Thank you for being here.  It truly means a lot for me to have you here in this Pure Flow Yoga community.

From the bottom of my heart, I want to express the depths of my gratitude and appreciation to all of the students, all of the staff and teachers, in person and virtual, for helping to support and inspire me in my dharma, my purpose til now, this Pure Flow Yoga project. 

To all of the students who have come here in person, to a class, retreat or training.  You have been my teachers.  Thank you.

Thanks for the past 3.5 years of love, support and sparkles here in Magic Bay, Koh Phangan,

where I am now getting to experience a full savasana…

I look forward to meeting and co-creating magical moments with you soon; online or somewhere in the world, one day soon…


 

Thanks for being a part of our community. 

Sending you infinite light, love and blessings for you.

I truly LOVE and APPRECIATE you being here,

XOXO

Francie
Founder of Pure Flow Yoga

***

Thanks for reading. 

Please remember to sign up for our Love-Letter to

get exclusive news, gifts, lessons & musings from Francie

that we only share with our subscribers!

***

 

***What’s your favourite inspiration this week?***

I LOVE Hearing from You. Please let me know!

 

Maha Love & Inspiration Playlist 2019

Maha Love & Inspiration Playlist 2019

Maha Love & Inspiration Playlist 

 

This is a round-up of some of my favourite tracks from 2019.

These are the songs that I shared with you this year in our  “Love & Inspiration” project – where I shared weekly my favourite quotes, music, books, blogs, articles, podcasts, meditations, talks and more that have been inspiring me on the path.

 

 

 

If you’re new to Pure Flow Yoga, you can access our Love & Inspiration archive of goodies here.

 

So much LOVE, Gratitude & Blessings to you,

 

XOXO

Francie Love

Upcoming Events

Love & Inspirations

***

Thanks for reading. 

Please remember to sign up for our Love-Letter to

get exclusive deals and weekly lessons & musings from Francie

that we only share with our subscribers!

***

 

***What’s your favourite inspiration this week?***

I LOVE Hearing from You. Please let me know!

 

Asana is the tip of the Yoga-Iceberg

Asana is the tip of the Yoga-Iceberg

Asana is just the

Tip of the Yoga Iceberg

Yoga is sooooo much more than just the poses.

At its core, Yoga is a practical life philosophy of self-inquiry and observation.

When you hear the word “Yoga” you may think of a room-full of fancy-pants wearing stretchy types breathing loudly and chanting OoooooommmmmM…

The physical practice of Yoga is called asana – physical postures linked with breath and movement.

Asana is just one tiny little aspect  – the very tip of the Yoga-Iceberg.

Asana is the 3rd limb of an 8-limbed philosophical system known as Ashtanga Yoga.

The Ashtanga Yoga system is considered a map to freedom or a guide to optimal living.

This system was outlined in one of the key texts of the Yoga tradition, the Yoga Sutras, which was written around 400 CE by a sage and scholar known as Patañjali

who borrowed from a variety of traditions to shape 196 still-highly-relevant aphorisms for living in alignment, grace and flow.

Asana is an easily accessible gateway to the rest of Yoga.

It’s a great place for people to start their journey into the heart of Yoga’s practices and life philosophy.

People often start a Yoga practice to enhance their health, lose weight, tone up, cultivate some space for me-time, and relieve stress.

At first, You start with one class,

then it’s one class a week,

then 2 classes a week…

Before you know it “doing Yoga” becomes an integral part of your day-to-day life….

Why?

Because the benefits you experience from your asana practice, far surpass just the physical. 

We love Asana / Postural Yoga.

It can be a great workout and way of staying toned and in shape.

Asana is essential to life force control.

Asana is designed to build internal heat, called tapas.

On the physical level,

the purifying heat of tapas helps to

cleanse the internal organs and glands,

oxygenate blood and joints.

and work through and clear tensions, stress, and stuck energies in the body.

On the mental-emotional level,

When we clear and purify the physical body through our asana practice,

we begin to breathe with more depth and ease,

Which helps calm and clear the mind of disconnected thoughts which can lead to anxiety, tension, restlessness, stress, anger or depression.

From this more calm, cool and collected headspace,

we elevate our consciousness

helping us to see life from a wider perspective

to make decisions and plans more easily.

We feel more healthy, light, aligned, balanced and happy in both our inner and outer worlds.

It helps us to enhance our well-being and raise our vibrations.

I’ve personally NEVER regretted getting on my mat and doing a physical practice.

It feels sooooo good and I truly LOVE it.

What’s important to remember is that the benefits and practices of Yoga extend far beyond just the physical shapes we make with the body,

Asana is truly just the tip of the Yoga iceberg.

Ready to dive deeper into Yoga and its 5000+ year old philosophy and tradition?

Wanna learn more about the 8-limed system, and begin to uncover more of the Yoga Iceberg?

Please join us for in Paradise for our upcoming 200 Hour Yoga-Alliance Accredited – Yoga Teacher Training Certification Course

Deepen your Practice, Connect to your Purpose and Find your Voice.

Hurry…Only 3 weeks left to save $300 USD when you register for our upcoming YTT with our Early Bird Special!

Our next 28 day Yoga Teacher Training is Feb 16 – March 16, 2020, and we’ll be going into Yoga as a philosophical tool and map,  an inner technology to help us develop higher levels of awareness, presence, peace, love and joy in our everyday lives.

If you’re feeling a call to invest in Yourself, and are ready to say YES, then please apply now!

If you have a desire to really help people through Yoga, this training is for you

Thank you so much for being a part of this growing, evolving, loving Pure Flow Yoga community. 

It really means so much to me and the rest of us teachers and staff to have you here. 

Have any questions about our Yogi/Teacher Training?

Please e-mail me – francie@pureflow.yoga – I’d love to hear from you!

 

Sending you lots of Light + Love

Francie Fishman

Founder of Pure Flow Yoga

P.S Payment plans are available to help make your life easier. You can pay your $500 deposit now, before October 31st, and you still benefit from this awesome deal!

P.P.S. Wanna connect with me one-on-one to see if a retreat or training is right for you? Click here to set up a FREE 15 minute discovery call with me on my calendar, and Ill be happy to chat with you on the phone!

P.P.P.S Wanna do some Asana practice with us Online? Check out our 90 min Pure Flow Yoga Class Podcast – recorded live at our jungle studio. 

Upcoming Events

Love & Inspirations

Francie is an experienced life-transformation expert from the Yoga perspective, having curated and led more than 150 + retreats, workshops and programs with over 500+ students from all walks of life from all over the world.  She is a passionate and free-spirited Yogi, hula hooper, musician, social entrepreneur and world-traveller dedicated to uplifting, inspiring and empowering people to live embodied and awakened lives.

She is the inspired founder of the award-winning Pure Flow Yoga, True:Nature Experience and Hoop Love Tribe.  Francie is currently living her dream between Thailand, Bali and the rest of the world, sharing intimate, magical and life-changing experiences, including her signature Retreats in Paradise, as well as festivals and community gatherings.

Receive her weekly Love & Inspirations when you Sign up for the Love letter- music, playlists, blog posts and more.T o follow Francie’s personal calendar, to r like her Facebook page: Francie Fishman :Yoga Hoop Music Love

Francie

Founder , Pure Flow Yoga

5 Tips to Creating a Meaningful Sankalpa

5 Tips to Creating a Meaningful Sankalpa

5 Tips to Creating a Meaningful Sankalpa

by Emma Lowe

What is Sankalpa?

Have you ever been in yoga class and zoned out when invited to set an ‘intention for your practice’, or during Yoga Nidra got the dreads when asked to call upon your sankalpa?

Know that you are not alone. Getting clear about our intentions and coming to know our life’s purpose can take a little time and heart felt thought.

First let’s get clear about what an intention is not – it is not a goal or resolution. 

When I’ve set myself a goal, it has usually been based around something I no longer want in my life and I become overly attached to a particular end result. The slightest of deviance makes you feel like you’ve failed and ultimately to quit what might have been a very good and worthy intention.

In my experience goals are set in the thinking mind, bringing with them layers of conflict between the unconscious mind and the workings of our being.

Our bodies therefore do receive the mentally constructed goal of change but instead energetically receive the internal conflict, which is the opposite of the desired effect and any changes materialising out of sheer will and determination rather than deep rooted and lasting transformation. 

With an intention however, we don’t need to judge whether we win or fail. An intention doesn’t trigger that conflicting voice in our minds.

An intention is a direction which allows us to learn from our detours without judgement, so we don’t quit, we don’t fail – we simply notice we’re face deep in the box of chocolate (self observation without judgement) and pull ourselves away from them (re-choosing our new direction) and get back on track (towards our intention). 

Where I have found radical and lasting transformation is with the use of intention or sankalpa within the practice of Yoga Nidra, which I’ll be sharing on our Thailand Yoga Retreats this summer/fall..

Yoga Nidra is a full body, conscious guided meditation process dating back to the Tantras.

Lying down, usually in savasana, you are guided to physically and energetically relax, withdrawing from the senses and external stimuli and coming to rest as open awareness itself in the bliss layer of being or Anandamaya Kosha. 

Here we work with intention at the very subtlest layers of our being.

In this state intentions can be planted without the presence of the conflicting mental mind and real paradigm shifts can occur.

 

But how do you actually go about setting an intention or a sankalpa? 

 

1. Make your intention about you

How do you want to be in the world? 

What is your highest expression of yourself?  

 

2. Let it resonate within you

You know when you have found the right intention for you as it will feel right.

It will resonate throughout your entire being.

Our intention should create a sense of expansion in the body.

 

3. Phrase your intention positively & in the present tense

Your intention should be a statement of truth. You may not fully believe it right now and that’s okay but feel it as though it were true and start to cultivate and direct your attention and energy in that direction.

Being cruel and drawing upon “negative” traits and characteristics seldom motivates lasting, positive change in ourselves (or in the world).

By focusing all our energy on the things we don’t like or don’t want creates discord – which is actually the opposite of the desired outcome!

For example rather than “I want to quit smoking” or “I want to be thin” your intention could be “I am healthy and only do things that nourish my body”.

Or rather than “I want to be less anxious” your intention could be “I am at peace”.

Make your intention withdraw energy from where you don’t want to be and instead direct your energy to where you do want to go. 

 

4. Keep it simple and concise

So you easily can recall it whenever you need it. 

If words aren’t really your thing, perhaps make your intention an image or a sense. As long as it creates the energetic sensation you want; your intention can be truly anything that works for YOU.

However, the best part about working with intentions in Yoga Nidra is that even if you aren’t quite sure of your Sankalpa, the more you practice Yoga Nidra and allow yourself to rest in open awareness  – the more you naturally come into better alignment and harmony.

Often bad habits and emotional patterns and all the things we tend to set intentions to shift naturally melt away, sometimes without you even realising they have been transmuted. 

 

5. If you’re still drawing a blank, ask yourself what is it that you truly want from this short and precious life?

What are the things that light you up and that make your wild heart sing?

Do more of whatever it is that you love and allow yourself to be more YOU in everything you do

and in doing this, you’ll align with an intention so deep and profound it lies beyond what the body can feel or the mind understand yet all things will fall into place. 

 

 

Emma will be sharing Yoga and Yoga Nidra at Pure Flow Yoga this summer .

Click here to find some free Yoga Nidra recording from Emma, including one on to help you find your sankalpa.

Join Emma for an intimate, magical, & life-changing retreat in Thailand this August and September 2019.

 

Upcoming Events

Love & Inspirations

Founder of Essential Nature Yoga, Irish nomad and Celtic Yogini Emma Lowe facilitates Yoga and Yoga Nidra practices which merge yoga and nature based wisdom. She has also been Communications and Creative Director and assistant facilitator with Somah Journeys since 2018.

With a background in creative and performing arts, Emma engages music, song, folklore and story telling for the purpose of personal and cultural healing in her offerings. She is also a poetic writer, photographer and painter. Since childhood Emma has been engaged in using these mediums for the purpose of peace and reconciliation through cross community projects in Ireland.

Emma’s career in film and television opened her eyes to an holistic way of living and opened her heart to a spiritual path while working on a national religion and ethics series. Later while working on hit HBO series Game of Thrones, Emma found balance and a way to deal with personal grief through mindfulness techniques she learnt from a Buddhist nun. An encounter which eventual led her to the yogic path and to South East Asia. 

Trained in Vinyasa Flow, Yin Yoga and Yoga Nidra, Emma teaches intuitively and with a deep understanding of life’s natural cycles and rhythms in order to nourish and inspire her students. 

Emma sees yoga as a vehicle for personal and social change and offers inclusive, safe spaces where everyone and everything is welcome. She is particularly passionate about practices that support women’s health, having trained with Tina Nance in Womb awakening and studying with Yoni Shakti author Uma Dinsmore-Tuli. Emma offers hormone balancing restorative yoga and her popular Yoni Nidra (womb meditations).

Emma spends time working with the native plant medicines of the Amazon basin, including the ‘vine of death’ and has received medicine songs and red road teachings during her time in South America, which inspired her to study and share her own ancestral roots through Celtic spirituality and Celtic Medicine wheel teachings.

Emma Lowe

Essential Nature Yoga

Transforming Cellular Memory, Yoga Deep & the Celtic Woodland Yoga Festival – Interview with Cathy Pearson

Transforming Cellular Memory, Yoga Deep & the Celtic Woodland Yoga Festival – Interview with Cathy Pearson

Transforming Cellular Memory,

Yoga Deep &

the Celtic Woodland Yoga Festival

Interview with Cathy Pearson 

“You tears are prayers…with them come great relief and expansion”. – Cathy Pearson

 

Listen to my conversation with Cathy Pearson here:

 

——-

 

In this Episode, Cathy shares about:

  • Meditation instead of medication – From depressed in her teens in Ireland to a life-long meditation practice
  • Her fascinating journey as an an award-winning documentary filmmaker
  • Transforming Cellular Memory, and the language and anatomy of sacred energy and purification
  • How to embrace and transform challenges through Universal Connection
  • the Celtic Woodland Yoga Festival, and how she’s helping to uplift and giveback to her local Yoga scene through the creation of Ireland’s 1st ever International Yoga & Spirit Festival
  • A trillion trees project and the importance of doing our bit to support worthwhile endeavours to help with climate crisis
  • Being a mom, and the power, bliss and choice of Natural Birth

 

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About Cathy:

Born in Ireland, Cathy Pearson, founder of Yoga Deep and the Celtic Woodland YogaFestival, is an award-winning feature documentary filmmaker, Yoga teacher and Spiritual Educator. She’s also a mother and proponent of natural birth, who has been involved with yoga for over 20 years.  In that time she has been living between Ireland, Thailand, India & Bali offering group and one to one sessions and deepening her understanding of the incredible depths of yoga. studying and practicing a variety of styles and disciplines, from Iyenger and Hatha, to Ashtanga and meditation .

For the past 18  years, Cathy has been in a deep process of spiritual healing & purification, and has qualified as a certified Cellular Healing Therapist. This process is called Transforming Cellular Memory or TCM, where intuitive & psychic skills are developed to clear the pathways for sacred energy to flow through to help us unlock old behaviour and thought patterns and raising our level of consciousness in a profound and powerful way.

Her new project, The Celtic Woodland Yoga Festival, Ireland’s first international Yoga Festival,  launches in July 2019 in Ireland

 

Learn more about Cathy:

 

Show notes:

Upcoming Events

Love & Inspirations

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Love at first Yoga

Love at first Yoga

Love at First Yoga

“I do” – Love at First Yoga – My Journey

 

Becoming a student of Yoga

Once upon a time, I was backpacking in India and decided to try a 10 day silent meditation retreat at Tushita in the Himalayas.

I thought that such a feat would be nearly impossible for such an incessantly talkative, extroverted, enthusiastic person such as myself.

It was surprising to me how easy it was to melt into the Simple Life.

I knew immediately how important this experience would be for my life.

It was challenging at times, don’t get me wrong, but I was in deep gratitude everyday for having discovered this practice of Being in my early 20’s.

On this retreat, they offered Yoga practice everyday.  

From the first downward dog I ever took, I knew:  This was it.  FULL YES.

I fell head over heals in love with Yoga.  Everything about it. The movements, the breath, the philosophy, the community of truth-seekers.

Truly, madly, deeply in LOVE.

As soon as I started loving and practicing Yoga, I felt openings and awakenings in my body and almost instantly the mind benefits started to creep in.

With more space, flexibility and awareness of my body, I learned to heal 16 years of chronic pain in my IT band – in my outer knee and thigh.

I also began to feel a lifetime full of indecision and the dances with depression begin to loosen their grip.

Resilience continues to grow strong all the time.

 

 

Poly-Yogamous

The next move on my travels was Thailand, where I met Lily of the Blooming Lotus.  Again, instant Love.  We kept in touch and I always knew that I wanted to learn more from this incredible embodied and wise Yogi.

Over the next many years I became a true Yogaphile: I really gave time to and tried Anusara Yoga, Hatha Yoga, Kundalini, Satsang, Yin, Restorative, Bikram, Hot Yoga, Ashtanga, Mysore practice, Iyengar. 

You name it, I tried it. Mostly…

Travelling for Yoga, taking as many classes and workshops I could, reading all the books.

I studied thousands of hours with countless teachers, masters, took endless trainings and workshops…

We know that life isn’t always easy.   Buddha’s first noble truth state that “all beings suffer”.  Its part of the package of being gifted this embodied life.

Yoga always helped make things better.

Yoga started to make my life easier and more enjoyable. 

It started to help me become more resilient and to help me overcome the bouts of depression that have been a signature part of my life throughout my child and adulthood.

 

 

Becoming a Yoga Teacher

After living for some time in Bali, teaching Pre-Kindergarten at the Green School (I’m actually a qualified and certified Primary school teacher!), 

I decided it was finally time to take my Yoga to the next – level with a Teacher Training course.  Of course Lily was top of my list of who I wanted to study with, even though I had only met her for a few days 6 years before.

The teacher training blew my mind and my teachers invited me to assist and work with them.  

Shortly thereafter, I moved to Thailand and started running classes, then retreats at the Blooming Lotus.

Dream come true.

For me, despite the statistics that share that there are anywhere from 2450-650,000 Registered Yoga Teachers in the US alone, I’ve always know that if its my dharma, or sacred purpose to teach, the universe will guide me.

I guess I’ve become a little woo-woo like that.  But it’s proven true.

A few years later, my teachers decided that it was time to move to Bali and open a beautiful new centre and world there.  We parted paths.

 

 

Becoming a Yogi-Preneur

This transition invited me to step up in to a new role – as a Yogipreneur – a Yogi + Entrepreneur, to take over the space in Thailand and create my own flavour of offerings.  

Another dream come true!

This has been a really challenging part of the journey. 

The beginning of our paths with Yoga is often a lot of Love + Light.  Which is great.

Eventually though, we need to sustain the practice, sustain the learnings, integrate the lessons…

So, it’s been 3 years now of running a business, and I’d say its been mostly rewarding.

I’ve learned sooooo much.  I’ve made countless friends, connecting with incredible people from all over the globe, I’ve help ed to positivly impact the lives of thousands of people. I’ve been able to live in paradise and practice Yoga and meditation in peace.

Running a business is no piece of cake. Its been very demanding and at times, I even forget that I’m a Yogi first. 

I’m doing my best, and definitely feel like I’m earning the equivalent of a Masters degree in Spirituality and Business.

Mostly though, having a business demands that I step out of my comfort zone and learn things that are not in my so-called “Zone of genius”.

For this I am grateful…and challenged.

 

 

What’s next for me?

No matter what happens in terms of my career or trajectory as a human being….Yoga and Meditation are next for me. 

If life has taught me anything, it’s that everything changes.

So I don’t know that I’ll be teaching Yoga in this way for the rest of my life, and I don’t know if it’ll be here in this paradise.

Yoga teaches me to be present, to be grateful and  love what is, and to accept change with grace.

Again, not always easy. 

Yoga is a practice.  It’s not something you do, then tick off the list.  

I think of showers in the same way.  Great! I had a shower today – that doesn’t mean I won’t need one again tomorrow or in a couple days right?!

Yoga is something you show up to in every moment, day after day after day.

Teaching Yoga does not mean that I have mastered it.  It simply means that I am dedicated to being a student of life, dedicated to facing my shadows, to learning, to growing and to evolving

Yoga is my forever teacher,  in the good times and the bad.

Yoga always helps to remind me of who I really am, beyond the stories and emotions.  It helps guide my way home.

I feel beyond blessed and grateful to dedicate my life to practicing and sharing Yoga, opening my heart, discovering deeper dimensions.  

And I vow to continue to evolve and grow, and become a more balanced and diverse person,  teacher and entrepreneur along the way, so long as that is what feels like the highest good for all, 

 

Til death or beyond…do us part Yoga.

Thank you for all that you give me.

 

 

In a nutshell, Why Yoga?

Hatha Yoga combines movement, conscious breathing, and mindful awareness and presence to offer physical, intellectual, emotional, and spiritual practices that connect us to the deepest aspects of our selves and our true nature.

The Benefits of yoga are boundless and include alignment, balance, strength, flexibility and connection to nature, community and our highest selves. 

Yoga helps me so much to navigate the reality of what presents in each moment. Its help me to know what the “highest alignment” is in each given situation, and it helps me to the see a true reflection of the roots of my suffering more clearly.  It improves each present moment most especially when I am in a really dedicated space of active practicing.

Life is still life. Up, downs, waves, emotions, times where I feel alone, time where I feel not enough. But every time an emotional fluctuation arises, it lasts less long and I can see the progress and resilience, I can feel it…

Yoga is the one thing I can absolutely commit to for the rest of my life. And I love nothing more than sharing this passion for the Practice, for being a student of life ever-after, and for living the ever – evolving dream of sharing this love with you all!

Yoga literally means “union” or “to yoke” our everyday selves with our highest most divine selves. Yoga is a powerful tool that teaches us how to live a life of balance, peace, harmony, strength and flexibility on all levels. The practice of yoga helps us become stronger, more open, free, happy, flexible and balanced, physically, emotionally and spiritually. Through yoga, we open ourselves to the infinite possibilities of life, allowing us to connect more deeply with ourselves, nature and community.

 

A Discipline Practice

A Disciplined Practice of yoga has the transformational benefits of deepening our connection to the body, mind and spirit, supporting us in living and loving long, vibrant, happy, healthy and fulfilling lives.

 

Yoga teaches us the art of letting go, letting grow, letting flow.

 

We move our bodies to move energy and restlessness to ultimately still the mind and enter the bliss of meditation, wherein our individual consciousness can merge with the ultimate or spiritual oneness consciousness, leading to our remembrance that we are not separate from that which appears to be outside of our own minds.

In practicing yoga, we become humbled and cultivate our trust in the body of wisdom that is sacred and vast and greater than our individual selves.

 

The Shift

We are invited through our practice to look at the reflections life shows us in the form of experiences, the people we come across, emotions that enter.

We practice the art of receiving, giving, continually striving for an open heart especially when it wants to close.

We come to believe seemingly impossible to be possible and begin embracing feelings of gratitude for the perfection of it all either way

From wherever we are at,  breaking through our somewhat uncomfortable comfort zones of who we think we are, the stories we tell ourselves about ourselves that we believe – “I’m not good at yoga”, “I’m too stiff/ old/ etc.. allows us to have the biggest heart, mind and body openings and shifts in our attitudes, mindsets, behaviours and thoughts.

Becoming more consciously aware, more mindful, in the choices we make everyday, from diet and lifestyle to the company we keep, so that we are living in full truth, love and integrity, is another great ripple effect of the practice.

Yoga helps inspire a deeper connection with mother nature and her cycles.  Perfectly orchestrated symphonies of synchronicities and coincidences being to more readily flow and stream through life.

And most importantly,  at the end of the day, Yoga is simply a practice.

So all you really gotta do is show up.

Be present.

Allow.

Let go

Breathe

and

Be.

 

Do you love Yoga as much as we do?  Let us know in the comments section! 🙂

 

 

Enjoy this short practice that explores a simple standing sequence to build strength in alignment, flow with the breath and movement and openness in the hips and heart.

Upcoming Events

Love & Inspirations

Francie is an experienced life-transformation expert from the Yoga perspective, having curated and led more than 150 + retreats, workshops and programs with over 500+ students from all walks of life from all over the world.  She is a passionate and free-spirited Yogi, hula hooper, musician, social entrepreneur and world-traveller dedicated to uplifting, inspiring and empowering people to live embodied and awakened lives.

She is the inspired founder of the award-winning Pure Flow Yoga, True:Nature Experience and Hoop Love Tribe.  Francie is currently living her dream between Thailand, Bali and the rest of the world, sharing intimate, magical and life-changing experiences, including her signature Retreats in Paradise, as well as festivals and community gatherings.

Receive her weekly Love & Inspirations when you Sign up for the Love letter- music, playlists, blog posts and more.T o follow Francie’s personal calendar, to r like her Facebook page: Francie Fishman :Yoga Hoop Music Love

Francie

Founder , Pure Flow Yoga

Healing Powers of Music

Healing Powers of Music

The Healing Powers of Music 

by Mel Dobra

 

Music has the ability to transcend cultural barriers,

 

Music has the power to soothe and heal emotional wounds.

 

Music has the power to unite communities, nations and even the world. 

 

In a society so focused on deadlines, keeping busy and getting ahead, the healing powers of music can often be overlooked, forgotten, and even dismissed as we strive forward on a never ending quest for the urban dream. 

 

About ten years ago I started playing music, and it was one of the biggest blessings of my life.

 

Through first hand experience, I quickly became aware, of the benefits that music can have, on ones well being, psyche and soul. 

 

 

 

 

My Story of how Music helped bring me back to Balance:

 

When life dealt me my own mental health challenges last year, it was music that played a big part In restoring me to good health.

Its not only the vibrations and the feelings that music elicit, but also the connections to community that music brings, creating shared experiences that we remember. 

I’m sure we can all recall a moment where a beautiful piece of music has been used to unite friends or family in love at a wedding.

I personally have been deeply touched by the music at a friends funeral, allowing us as a community to grieve together, to feel our own sorrow and sadness. 

As an early childhood educator I have researched and witnessed the power that music has in different areas of the education system, especially supporting students with ASDL and other learning difficulties, bringing about both greater educational outcomes, and wellbeing.

 

 

Experience it for Yourself

 

Sound healing, singing, kirtan (or call and response singing), expressing, communicating and sharing are all beautiful ways we can explore the healing powers of music.

Step into this shared experience of music, to heal, create memories, activate your voice and share songs with us in paradise on our upcoming retreat @ Pure Flow Yoga Thailand this July 2019.

And stay tuned by following me on Facebook…I’m about to release my new album Smoke and Flame. 

 

 

About Mel Dobra

 

 

Mel Dobra is a performing arts teacher, a recording artist, and a workshop facilitator who uses the power of music, and creativity to create spaces where people can find a deeper connection to themselves, the community and the planet, through the shared power of sacred music. 

Follow Mel’s Journey on FB: https://www.facebook.com/meldobramusic/

Listen & Buy Mel’s Music: https://meldobra.bandcamp.com/

 

Upcoming Events

Love & Inspirations

Reclaim your Day – Checking out of the morning Phone-Check Cycle

Reclaim your Day – Checking out of the morning Phone-Check Cycle

Reclaim your Day

Checking out of the morning Phone-Check Cycle

 

Question – Do you check your phone first thing in the morning?

 

If you do, you are in good company. 

 

According to research by IDC and sponsored by Facebook, more than 80% or 4/5 smartphone users check their phones before brushing their teeth or getting out of bed in the morning.

 

This week I started an experiment on myself: I would check my phone only after I had already finished my meditation and yoga practice.

 

Here’s how I did my experiment: 

 

3 Tips to Checking Out of the Morning Phone Check Cycle

 

1. Charge your phone across the room, and put it on airplane mode

If you charge your phone, or keep it next to you in the bed, the temptation to reach over for a even just a quick check can be just too much. Forcing yourself to physically get out of bed to check your phone, brings this habit into much more conscious awareness and control. Make it a conscious choice to check your phone, rather than a habit on auto-pilot

 

 

2. Choose a Habit to start instead: Meditate, Read, Do Sun Salutations, Journal, Exercise

 

Choose something that your highest self would like to do every day.  This could reading, writing, meditating, exercising, staring off into space…Do it consciously for 5 mins, 30 mins, 90 mins….choose something that is easily attainable for you,  so that you are setting yourself up for success.

I use Insight timer in the most simple way possible. I put a timer on for 30 mins everyday.  Once I complete that time, it tracks my progress and celebrates me and the hundreds of thousands of others who are meditating at the same time as me old over the world.  Knowing others are doing this as well is also motivating for me. 

 

 

3. Hold yourself accountable: Tell other people about your experiment

This week I told everyone in my community house about what I was doing.  It helped us all to reflect on our somewhat unconscious morning habits.  It also became a but of silly joke and conversation topic.  But in reality, what it did, was help me keep me accountable to my commitment to this experiment.  I highly highly highly recommend that you do this with a friend, partner, or at least share with people you care about that you are trying this as an experiment.

 

 

Here’s what I  found:

 

1) It’s hard to break this cycle

Honest truth -t it was actually really hard. 

Its become a daily habit to scroll my phone first thing in the morning, For 30-45 minutes sometimes. 

I want to connect, to see what I’ve missed, to know what’s been happening with the world around me, and to be in the know about what I need to do, respond to and/or catch up on. 

and i get joy out of it.

It’s a dopamine hit and I know it.

There is definitely an addictive quality to the relationships most of us have with our phones.  And this is a worldwide phenomena.

Taking a break from this habit this week has felt truly overwhelming at times. 

 

2) The benefits of breaking the cycle far outweigh the cost

Persisting with my commitment to this experiment has been well worth it:

The most stand-out benefit is that I began to reclaim my day.  

I often begin my days feeling like I’ve fallen behind.  I get stressed and overwhelmed by the things I’ve got to do, by the things I’ve missed out on or haven’t done yet. and if I’m truly honest with myself, by other people that I’m comparing myself with.  

I often feel like I’m in a hurry, late or need to rush to catch up.

This week instead of beginning my day with this feeling, I began my days feeling more relaxed, present, spaciousness, slow and at ease.

Taking a break from the rush of streaming notifications and messages, has helped me to spend more quality time in dedication to my practice, my thoughts and my plans for the day ahead.

I feel like I am more in alignment with the person who I want to become.

I’ve learned that just because my phone lights up, does not mean that something super important or un-missable is happening.  I can let it be.  

Essentially, I’ve been able to move from a more reactive approach to my day to a more proactive one.

and if I can do it, then so can you.

 

This week, I invite you to try the experiment with checking out of the morning phone-check cycle with me and let me know how it goes? Easy? Hard?

Please feel free to reply or comment below.  I’d LOVE to hear from you

Yoga & Taboo: Sex, Death & Wealth – Interview with Emily Kuser

Yoga & Taboo: Sex, Death & Wealth – Interview with Emily Kuser

Yoga & Taboo

Sex, Death & Wealth

with Emily Kuser

Listen to our conversation with Emily Kuser here:

 

<

 

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“Whether something is filled with pleasure or pain, can you be with it?” – Emily Kuser

it ‘s a true honour and pleasure to welcome the wise, accomplished and fascinating Emily Kuser to the Pure Flow Yoga podcast.. Emily is a true seeker at heart, and has journeyed from her humble American roots, to becoming a prominent international Yoga teacher based in Bali and offering her Self-Care, Woman’s work and Taboo exploration workshops worldwide. Emily has a passionate curiosity for exploring the big questions of life (and death), and also how can she be best be in service to humanity a teacher. Emily is known for her skills and passion teaching Anusara Yoga, Embodied Flow, and now the more juicy and unexplored topics of sex, death & wealth, which we talk a bit about today.   

——-

In this Episode, Emily shares about:

  • How she literally followed her dream to come to Bali and start a life here
  • Yoga as a way to bring order to the chaos of iife
  • The importance for both women and men to explore spirituality for the female psyche, to understand our cyclical nature
  • What is Self-Care and why she’s offering teacher trainings and workshops in this area
  • Business as a great spiritual path and teacher, and the importance of refining our communications, agreements and contracts
  • Tantra as a nature-based teaching and philosophy, and how to allow your self to perceive the world through body and senses 
  • Why she’ inspired by those working most closely with birth and death 

 

——-

About Emily:

Emily Kuser– Founder of High Vibe Yoga 

Emily has spent a decade on teaching, research and personal experience to create the highest level courses possible. She has a sincere curiosity about healing methodologies and spiritual systems and wholeheartedly investigates their practicality for everyday people with everyday lives. Emily has studied with masters around the world in Asia, Europe and North America. Her work is deeply influenced by teachers Sally Kempton, Tara Judelle, Layla Martin, Lorin Roche & Mark Whitwell and the fields of Classical Tantra, Hatha Yoga, Somatics and Integrated Sexuality. She is dedicated to offering a fresh and honest approach to spirituality.  Emily has lived in Ubud, Bali for over 10 years and teaches her courses internationally.

 

Learn more about Emily:

Website High Vibe Yoga

Instagram@highvibeyoga

FacebookHigh Vibe Yoga

 

Show notes:

 

 

  • Ibu Robin Lim –  Natural birthing midwife offering courses, retreats and disaster relief in Bali. 2011 CNN Hero of the Year.

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