Archive by Author

Hoarding & Clutter

06 July
Wedding Shoes

This is the only picture you can actually see me wearing my shoes, pardon the PDA!

I had to throw away my wedding shoes today. I wore them one last time to work today, a long 11 hour day, and when I got home, they went in the trash bin. It was sad. At the same time, I knew I had to let go. I thought “what if I keep them in a box all destroyed just for keepsake”, but I’m not a collector. I’ve never been. I use everything I own. The last three years though, it has been hard to let go of material things. I’ve been hoarding everything I own because I had to give up so much to give birth to Denis’ baby. I used to clear clutter regularly, every month I would get rid of things that I wasn’t using. But when we had to open zm, I remember all the things I had given away that could have used there, and it became hard to let go.

 What brought peace as I threw my wedding shoes away was that I wore them until they were not wearable anymore. How many brides get that chance? Same with my wedding dress. I’ve been lucky to wear it several times since our wedding day.

It’s time to let go and clear my clutter. I’ll keep you all posted! I’m excited to be back!

P.S. What are you hoarding?

Wedding Shoes 2

You can see my shoes there to the right

Fear & Our Practice

02 June

Today I woke up with tons of emotions. Anger, frustration, fear, and who knows what else. I knew Denis would ask me what was going on. But I didn’t know, until I asked myself and told myself to be 100% honest.

The answer was, I feel frustrated that I’m 33 yrs old and I can’t afford to buy the books for my teacher training.

It took a lot of guts to admit that I don’t have the money to afford about $100 worth of books. Yes, I can put them on my credit card which is what I do with everything nowadays. But the reality is that I (like thousands of ppl here in the US), cannot pay my full balance like I used to before we open Zen Mystery. And that makes me feel like BIG HUGE failure!

I know looking from outside my life looks amazing. I live by the beach, I have two businesses, I have a loving caring husband, and I have great friends. I’m grateful for all of this. And in moments like today I have to remind myself of these, the things to be grateful for.

However, when I get to this point, when I fear for my future, it’s hard to see them. To see that the Universe has actually provide for me all these years. And to shake the feeling that all these was a mistake, takes longer, usually until I have cried and taken a breath.

I know the more selfish thing would have been to stay where I was, in my safety cushion, on a nice corner office, with my 10 years of experience as an engineer, traveling the world, and living the lifestyle that would afford me. Instead, we choose to teach, share, and open a place for the community. On days like this, I feel it was a mistake. I feel I got rid of my suit and heels too soon!! On days like this, I want to stay polishing my resume and look for a job, where it’s someone else’s responsibility to find the money to pay me.

I know I’m not alone. I know many of you feel the same way. We took the plunge, jumped in and did it and now we are barely swimming above water.

On days like this, ALL WE HAVE LEFT is OUR PRACTICE. So we need to let the tears flow and cry it out, and go back to our practice. Maybe put some music and dance it out. Because the reality is that we will learn either way, by failing or by succeeding. We just have to let go of the attachments and be patient with the process. So whether you meditate, do yoga, or anything else, keep at your practice. And know that moments like these are not a breakdown, but a BREAKTHROUGH!!

Today is my 13th year anniversary with Denis. And I haven’t even been able to enjoy it because I got stuck in this FEAR & pity party. But now I’m ready to move on thanks to a friend in FB that shared a post that made me wake up. So hopefully this post will also help you wake up and we can begin a wave of gratitude instead.

Fear & Our Practice

Denis & I, June 2nd, 2001, on our first date.

A big Hug to you…

 

 

 

Zen Mystery | Spiritual Center, Tea Room, and Boutique

18 January

zen mystery spiritual center in Dania Beach

When I met Denis in 2001, he was going to school for a Bachelor in Liberal Arts. I laughed thinking, what is that? who studies Liberal Arts? Of course, that was me back then. I used to think that if someone was going to pay for college, they should major in either engineering, law, or medicine; anything else was a waste of money and time. So I asked him what Liberal Arts entail and what kind of job he would have. He replied that he wanted to open a spiritual school where he and other people could teach spirituality and an integral program similar to that of Ken Wilber’s.

When we started dating and things got serious, I worried for him because finding a job with that degree was going to be difficult and opening a business seemed horribly scary to me. I had always said that I didn’t want people to depend on me to earn a living, I had rather let someone else worry about my paycheck. So a business, to me what not an option. He went back to school and got a master’s degree in Educational Technology, and I was very proud of him and his new career.

Over the years though, as I worked on my spiritual journey, and opened my mind to trust the Universe, I realized that I liked Denis’ idea of a school. I didn’t like to call it a school, I called it a Center, an Integral Lifestyle Center.

Visualizing Zen Mystery

For a few year I dreamed about it, visualized it, and even made a vision board with everything I pictured having there. I had even picked the building where it was going to be. And two years ago, as a trial, Denis and I opened a consulting business in online marketing which is another area we were experts at. Inbound Den opened in August 2011 to help conscious businesses promote their companies online.

Last year, Denis quit his corporate job to work full time on Inbound Den. That gave us the opportunity to feel comfortable in owning and running a business.

Taking a Leap

I’m a big fan of Marie Forleo, Kris Carr, and Mastin Kipp, and I had been dying to go to RHH Live because I was ready to take the leap into our Spiritual Center. But the price, the time, everything wasn’t working out for me to go to NYC and learn how to run a business. Sad about this one day, I opened my email and saw a message from Omega Institute about a workshop on how to start your own business and taught by Stephan Rechtschaffen, founder of Omega and former CEO.  The price was right, the time was right, the topic was exactly what I needed, and who better than Stephan to learn from? WOW. I book that baby right away and went without a doubt.

I had told myself that I was going there just to take notes for Denis so that he could make his dream of a school come true. But the reality was, that I was the one that needed the hand holding. And boy, what a great place to shed the fears away! Omega in Rhinebeck was the perfect space to do just that. I learned a lot from Stephan and my classmates that weekend and was so inspired each minute I was there that I just couldn’t contain myself. I was ready to give birth to our baby: Zen Mystery.

Zen Mystery, Spiritual Center, Tea Room, and Boutique

We found the perfect place four our center. As of today, we are working very hard to open our doors in February 2013 and share with you all Denis’ vision that has been cooking in his heart from over a decade. We will be offering meditation classes, yoga, tai chi, dance, and more. In the tea room we will have vegan pastries and snacks like sandwiches, soups, and salads. In the boutique, we will have some clothing, accessories and other products that are aligned with the Integral Lifestyle. We also want to make the classroom available to anyone in the community that needs space for workshops or classes since it’s difficult to find a central location with plenty of parking.

You can go to our facebook page for Zen Mystery to stay tuned for updates on the opening day and what will be offered there.

We hope to see you soon in Zen Mystery in downtown Dania Beach!

Black Friday Shop Local

22 November

Thanksgiving is over and that marks the start of the shopping and gift giving season. This Friday, vote with your money by shopping local and supporting the economy by helping local business stay open. Avoid all big stores that are owned by the 1%. Do we really need the walmart family in the top 10 list of richest people this year again? What about our friends that have opened retails businesses? Don’t they deserve a chance too?

local shopping in south florida

Yoga gift certificate, local-made jam, non-gmo chips, and local-made spicy sauce

I invite you to invest your hard earn money in products that are made in America or that at least are fair trade. Shop local this season and support your community instead.

South Florida Local Shopping for Black Friday

There are many places to shop local in South Florida, but here are a few I believe are great places to buy local.

  • Tree of India is an aromatherapy store with much more than just oils. There are many products made here in the USA and handmade by the store owner. Prices are reasonable and if you can make up your mind, you can purchase a gift certificate for your loved one.
  • Thousand Pound Egg not only carries tons of cooking books but also local made jams and great gifts for foodies.
  • Acacia is not just an awesome and unique jewelry store but also has great accessories and other beautiful gifts for everyone. This is where I bought my wedding rings made out of recycle quarters.
  • Yellow Green Market is a large market with local artisans and businesses all in one place. You will be sure to find all sorts of gifts here.

Outside the Box Gift Ideas

Gift certificates are an awesome idea, but instead giving a restaurant, movie tickets, or store gift certificate this year, how about something more outside the box? Give the gift of…

  • Yoga! Buy a gift certificate to your favorite yoga studio and share the gift of yoga this season. You can also get a private class certificate or a workshop gift certificate for those loves ones that want to take their practice to the next level.
  • Motivation! We all have friends going thru hard times, and it might be hard to think of something that can help their situation. Giving them something to keep them motivated this year might be the solution.
  • Charity! For those of us that “have it all” or don’t like to get gifts, buying something can be difficult. I do enjoy when people donate to my causes or my charities of choices in my name. Ask your friends or loves one for local charities you can donate in their name.

We all complain about the economy but only a few of us will do something about it. Take a chance this year and don’t just think about saving money, but instead think about supporting your community by shopping at local this season.

The Alkaline Diet

10 October
Alkaline Raw Vegan Pizza

Alkaline Raw Vegan Pizza

The Alkaline Diet is pretty simple to follow: eat and do things that are highly alkaline. That’s it! So as long as you remember what is acidic and what is alkaline, you’re good to go. Whether is raw or cooked, the most important thing is that you stay highly alkaline, say 80% alkaline and 20% or less acidic. But there are some important things to keep in mind too that most diet either frown upon or don’t take into account that are critical to the Alkaline Diet.

Elements in the Alkaline Diet

There are four elements that one must follow in the Alkaline Diet: Healthy Oils, Chlorophyll, Salt, and Water. I’ll discuss each element below.

Oils

These is always a point of disagreement in a lot of diets and lifestyles. Most people think of oils as the oil they use to fry french fries at McDonalds or any fast food place.  But our bodies, and specially our brains need oils… Healthy Oils! We find this is an area where most people are not educated in, and we get a lot of questions about it. We need omegas (3, 6, and 9) to function well and regenerate brain cells. Because of combining the vegan diet and the Alkaline diet, we only take vegan oils that offer a good healthy amount of omegas. Most people think vegan oils with omegas don’t exist, they believe they have to get them from fish. You can if that’s what you want. For spiritual reasons, I don’t consumer animals. So I choose vegan oils such as Hemp Seed Oil (2 to 1 ratio), Flax Seed Oil (3 to 1 ratio), and Chia Seed Oil. Omega 5 oils are Avocado, Coconut (which helps to absorb omega 3 oils), and Pomegranate Seed Oil.

Chlorophyll = Greens

Green Juice Cold Pressed

Green Juice Cold Pressed

Most people and people eating the SAD don’t get enough servings of healthy greens (Chlorophyll). These include plant foods (Kale, Lettuce, Chard, etc), vegetables juices, and green powders (Alkavision or Dr. Brocs). Even vegans may not be getting enough alkaline vegetables or green juices.

Salt

Another topic that is very tabu in the health community is Salt. Most people think we Alkalarians mean the disgusting Morton salt most people have in their kitchens or some may imagine we refer to the “healthier” version: sea salt. Just two days ago someone told me that they don’t eat salt because it shrinks their organs! Again, if a person is eating the SAD, they eat a lot of sodium from processed foods and drink non-hydrating liquids, well yes, salt will not be healthy for them. For those of us in the Alkaline diet, salt is critical. The best salts are Real Salt from Utah and Red Alaea Salt (Hawaiian Salt). These Hawaiian salts can be found in different types. Another type of salts that are crucial in the getting healthy are Magnesium and potassium salts which are key minerals for the body and the nervous system.

Water

I’m not talking about drinking 8 cups a day, I’m referring to the quality of the water and the pH of the water. Pure alkaline IONIZED water with a high pH such as 9.5 and an ORP of 150mV. That’s the kind of water! Your body will thank you for it. In fact, if you are planning in making one change today, this is the most critical in my view. Start by getting an ionizer and if you can afford it, a nano filter too. If you are not able to afford purchasing these two, you can buy bottled water with high pH like Essentia water. Don’t trust what it says in the bottles of the water you buy, do your research. Right now, Essentia is the only brand left in the market that you can trust.

 

The Alkaline diet is not just a fad diet, is a new LIFESTYLE! And not just for those with illness or disease but for anyone who wants to improve their quality of life. So let’s summarize this, to start the Alkaline diet:

Even one change you make today will start improving your health!

Steamed Alkaline Food Recipe

05 October

I’ve been posting pictures of my steamed alkaline food on instagram and many have asked for recipes. I started steaming alkaline vegetables a few months ago because towards the end of last year I had been eating a lot of acidic foods and even though they were raw, it was acidic.

Steamed Alkaline Food Recipe

Steaming Alkaline Vegetables

The idea with eating steamed food was to reset my taste buds and help my body become more alkaline again. Denis and I just a conversation about how when we discovered the Alkaline principle that we stayed pretty alkaline until we went to our first raw food festivals in Sedona in 2008 ans we were told cashews, chocolate, mushrooms, and agave were good for you.

We knew better but didn’t listen.

Alkaline Food Recipe

The recipe for steaming alkaline food is simple. I take my list of alkaline food and throw any combination of these in the steamer. I don’t steam avocados or seeds or fruits. Everything else I steam and then add oils when the food is done ans on my plate.

Since it’s fall, I’m using a lot of fall organic local veggies and whatever else I see at Josh’s that fits the “highly alkaline” requirements. Here is one of my favorite combinations:

1 handful of Brussel Sprouts

1 handful cauliflower

1/4 cup of sprouted beans (including peas)

1/4 rep pepper

Garlic (as much as you like)

2 large collard leaves

2 large chard leaves

Kale, spinach, and other greens

Real Salt, cumin, and other spices

Hemp oil to taste

 

I use all my ingredients fresh from Josh’s Organic Garden, so I only have to steam them for less than 10 minutes. I don’t buy anything frozen because it’s not considered raw. My steamer has a timer, so I add all veggies but the greens and spices and oil and set the timer for 10 to 12 minutes.

When there is about 2 minutes left, I add the greens and cover until the steamer rings and shuts off.  I add hemp oil to all my meals that are cooked so I can get all the benefits from the hemp oil and not complain about the taste. A major reason I steam some food is to reset my taste bud and to learn to eat oils I did not like when I was only eating raw.

Serve warm with seasonings.This is enough food for me for dinner or sometimes I have leftovers for the next day. Do not microwave or warm up again! Anything good left in the food will be dead if you microwave it.

Steamed Alkaline Food Recipe

You can change the ingredients with any of the vegetables on the Alkaline list and add other seasoning or spices or even hot peppers and the seasons change and other veggies become available. Below is a picture of garbanzo sprouts, broccoli, and peas as as different mix.

Steamed garbanzo sprouts with veggies

 

10 Acidic Foods to Avoid

02 October

I have talked about alkaline foods but many of you have asked what are acidic foods that can be eliminated from your diet for anyone, not just those with disease or transitioning to the alkaline lifestyle.

Acidic Foods

What are Acidic Foods?

In the Alkaline lifestyle, foods that are not alkaline are considered acidic and are below 7 in the pH scale. These are the foods that cause disease and allergic reactions to the body yielding an unhealthy environment for disease to grow and bacteria to thrive. These foods have been linked to cancer and heart disease.

Acidic Foods to Avoid

Here is a list of the top ten most acidic foods that should be avoided at all times:

  • Dairy products
  • Meat and shellfish
  • All forms of sugar (including fruits)
  • Vinegar
  • Mushrooms and algae
  • Peanut and peanut oil
  • Corn
  • Fermented foods (including soy sauce and miso)
  • Eggs
  • Alcohol

Anyone who wants to improve their general health can start avoiding these gradually and adding more alkaline foods to their diet to see results. From loosing weight to improving heart disease, these changes to your lifestyle will make a difference. Many doctors are starting to recommend a vegan lifestyle for heart disease patients. But it’s important to understand that a vegan diet can also be acidic or unhealthy. I was a raw vegan junk food eater and a vegan junk food years ago too. Before the decision to be a vegan became an energy/spiritual path reason, I would not mind eating french fries at a fast food joint, or eating a mushroom burger with fake cheese and drinking a sake bottle. I could still be a vegan, but the choices I was making were not healthy and highly acidic.

The same can be said about eating a raw vegan diet. There are those that eat 30 bananas a day believing that’s healthy because it’s fruit that fell from a tree. The truth is that tropical fruit is acidic and creates a terrible environment for the body. You might as well eat a steak!

Making healthy choices can be difficult but making small steps can be beneficial to your health.

Acidic Foods cheese and wine

Photo of steak, bacon, and eggs by missvancamp

Photo of wine and cheese by wendyness

Vegan & Raw Kitchen Tools

27 September

One of the most frequently asked questions I get about eating raw vegan is what kitchen tools or appliances are needed. The reality is that you don’t need much, and it’s possible that you already have some of these things. But if you want to invest money in your new lifestyle, it’s important to understand why you will use them and how to use them. Don’t let this stop you from starting your transition to a vegan or raw lifestyle though.

I’ve put together a list of the things I own and how I use and I will tell you on a scale of 1 to 5 how essential they are, 5 being EXTREMELY Essential.

Water Nano Filter & Water Ionizer

The Chanson Miracle M.A.X. PREMIER PACKAGE comes with the Miracle M.A.X. Ionizer, the C3 Pre-Filter, and the Ionizer Armor
Water is super important! In fact, if you aren’t ready to be 100% vegan, invest in a nano filter water system and a water ionizer right away. Denis and I got our ionizer in 2004 and were lucky that prices were lower back then, though at the time, I was right out of college and still a bit broke 🙁 So it was a lot of money to me. We finally got a nano filter last summer and haven’t looked back since then. I get the best water I can afford whether I’m vegan or not. (Yes I’m strictly vegan, just saying you don’t need to be to have good water). So in the scale, I’d say this is a 10. Yes, super extra extremely important to your health! I would recommend to brake your piggy bank and get a nano filter asap.

Food Processor

This get a number 5 on the scale. Super important even if you are not vegan or raw! I’ve had a Food Processor since I was 12 years old! I don’t know how people cook or prepare food without one! I use it at least once a day. For real! Like this is my most valuable possession if someone breaks in. Ok, the ionizer is my most valuable possession but we won’t tell my 10 cup Food Processor. I use to make pates, to cut veggies, to make puddings, to make sauces and salad dressings, and who know what else! I just love it and can’t live without it.

Vitamix, High-Speed Blender

Vitamix

 

I have had my Vitamix since 2004 before I became vegetarian even. So I don’t know what life is without one. This is a number 5 on the scale and a great investment to your health. I do have to confess though that the first few months I had a Vitamix, I used it to blend cocktails for after work, made great Pina Coladas and Strawberry Daiquiris in it. But later, I was glad I had it and was able to use it during my transition to vegan and raw. I love Vitamix and 100% of my friends have it. I only know one person at work with a different kind of high speed blender and most people I talk to say they prefer Vitamix.

Knives

Very important and if you don’t have good sharpened knives, then get some.  Ceramic are great but if you are on a budget, you can also get MAC Knives at an affordable price. I don’t have a whole set. In fact, I only own three knives and that’s enough for me.

Vegetable Juicer

Unless you are planning to juice every day, I say this is number 3 in the scale. (OK, I bunch of my friends just went, WHAT?). I don’t like juicing, it’s a lot of work for me, and I don’t have to juice because I have Josh’s Organic Garden three mile bike ride from my home. So that’s why to me it’s not so important. I also calculated what I pay for juices at Josh’s compared to if I was juicing, which I did try for a whole month, and it came out more economical for me to buy my juices each night. But if you want to have a juice and have the $200+ hanging around in your pocket, then yes, get one. The trick about juicers is to get one that doesn’t heat up the vegetables. I recommend single gear juicer which masticates or chews your vegetables. I only use mine to make my Raw Vegan Kimchi or to make fruit sauces.

Other Fun Tools

Spiralizer

I use to make veggie noodles and it doesn’t cost much. It’s fun to have but not a must. So it gets a 2 on the scale.

Dehydrator

I don’t use mine much, I did at the beginning when transitioning to 100% raw. I use for parties when I make Indian Raw Food or my some of my party recipes. I do wish I had bought one with a timer. So that’s what I recommend you do if you want to get one. In the scale, I give the dehydrator a 1.

Ice Cream Maker

OK, this was a purchase made by Denis. How many times have we used it, five times since we bought it with a 20% discount. So I’m thankful I didn’t spend much money on it. It’s fun to have if you like to make ice cream and you are an ice cream lover. I’m not. Denis is, but he doesn’t make much food. So to me this get a -2 on the scale… unless you are an ice cream lover, then it gets a 0.

So to summarize, nano water filter and water ionizer are the most important, the Vitamix next, then the Food Processor. All others come later.

Which one would you buy first and why?

Vitamix Photo by wrestlingentropy

Simple Yoga Sequence at Home

10 September

One of my good friends moved to France about two years ago to study, and she recently asked  me for help with yoga. So I typed up my favorite simple yoga sequence for home, which is the one I also use when I teach or substitute teach for my friends, and send it over to her in Paris to try. Many people since then have asked me to create a routine for them to use at home that is easy for them to do alone without having to watch a video or plug in their computer to get someone in youtube. So here is my favorite yoga sequence for a one hour class/routine.

Simple yoga sequence at home

Simple Hatha Yoga Sequence

This sequence is divided in several parts or sections that will create a complete routine that is easy to follow at home.

Beginning Meditation

Come to a comfortable seated position. Grab a towel, bolster, or block to support you if you need to. Bring your hands to your knees or to your heart.

Take a deep breath and relax your mind.

Begin with chanting 3 OMs inhalin and exhaling OM.

Take a deep breath and think of all the wonderful amazing things that happened to you today.

Awakening & Standing Breathing Exercises

These are the warm up exercises

Rotate feet 3 times each way.

Rotate knees 3 times each way.

Rotate shoulders 3 times front and back.

Rotate hands 3 times each way.

Rotate neck 3 times each way.

Rotate head 3 times each way (look to the left, back to center, look to the right, back to center).

Bring your arm over your head, clasp thumbs from both hands together for side stretch (Inhale pull to the left, exhale back to center. Inhale pull to the right, exhale back to center).

Sun Salutations

Sun Salutation are done in rounds meaning one round is both sides. I suggest a minimum of 3 rounds, 5 max.

Simple Sun Salutation Sequence 

The simple sequence is as follows: Inhale (IN), Exhale (EX)

Start by standing in mountain pose at the front of your mat. Face East to do your sun salutations.

IN arms up over your head.

EX bring your arms down and to touch the math or toes (bend your knees if you need to).

IN look halfway up up.

EX bring your right foot to the back of the mat.

IN bring your left foot to meet the other one for plank pose, and hold your breath while in plank.

EX bring your knees down, chest down chin down to the mat,

IN and come and up to upward dog or cobra (which ever you prefer)

EX to downward dog

IN bring your right foot to the front of the mat

EX bring your other foot to meet it

IN come up, arms up

EX bring your hands to prayer (chest)

This is half of one round, then you would do the left foot and that would be 1 complete round.

Some people do chaturanga instead of the knees-chest-chin, come thru before up dog or cobra. But if you have never done a correct chaturanga, is better to stick to knees, chest, chin come thru. I had been doing chaturanga all wrong for 8 years until 2010 when a teacher in an advance class showed us!!! It’s sad but most teachers don’t teach a correct chaturanga, specially at gyms

Advanced Sun Salutation Sequence

Include warrior poses in the simple sequence above, in round 3, after downward dog when your foot comes to the front and you are in  a lunge position, start with warrior I, then II. I never do warrior III in sun salutations though.

And then after one round of warriors, the next round will have triangles (trikonasa).

Add Warrior I and Warrior II to simple sequence (if round 4).

Add prayer twist to simple sequence (if round 5).

Add trikonasa from warrior II to simple sequence (in combination with either 2 above).

Balance

Tree Pose on both sides. Release each side with control. Shake legs after coming out of Tree Pose.

Dancer Pose on both sides. Release each side with control. Shake legs after coming out of Dancer Pose.

Spine

After the balance poses, I like to start working the spine.

Begin with Dandasana, hold for a few breaths and do a forward fold.

Next is, Janu Sirsasana, hold for a few breaths on each side and fold.

Lay on your back and bring knees to chest, head to knees, hold for a few breaths, and release.

Detox Poses

After working the spine, I find that detox poses are best to follow.

Start with a twist from Janu Sirsasana on both sides. Hold for a few breaths in each side.

Laying down twist, knees to chest and bring to each side. Hold for a few breaths in each side.

Laying down twist one leg to the side, do both sides. Hold for a few breaths in each side.

Core Poses

The core is extremely important and one of the hardest to workout in a regular gym routine or yoga routine. I like to do boat pose and when I have advanced students or athletes, I will have them do boat situps, never touching the ground 🙂

Boat pose, hold for a few breaths.

Inversions

My favorite inversion to do in class is dolphin. I don’t believe in head stand for myself. I do enjoy 90 degree hand stand on the wall, but I don’t include either in my routine or classes because they don’t call to me. It’s an inner voice that tells me head stand is not for me. So I practice other inversions such as Dolphin, Plow, or Shoulder stand instead. For this simple routine, Dolphin works great.

Dolphin and Dolphin push-ups (10 if possible and increase as days go by)

For more advanced students, dolphin pushups with one leg up

Final Meditation

For the final meditation, enjoy about 10 minutes in Savanasa, reflecting on your practice or giving thanks to yourself for doing something for your body and mental health. And when you are ready, come up to a comfortable seated position and chant OM.

 

What other poses would you add to this routine to make it your own? Share with us!

 Photo by InboundDen

 

Meditation | Where to Start

02 September

Another one of my blogs for MentalBlox.com on meditation. Many people ask me where they should start. I always recommend finding out what type of meditation will work from them and the reason is that I don’t believe meditation is well understood at the beginning. So starting with something that works for you, will help you enhance your spiritual practice.

Private yoga classes in South Florida

 

Three Types of Meditation

Meditation is key in spiritual growth. We hear it all the time on the internet, in the streets, on TV, etc. But most people avoid it because their image of meditation is of someone sitting still in a dark room quieting their minds. Creating a meditation routine is the first step to start, but finding the right type of meditation that works for you is most important.

Guided Meditation

In high school, attending a catholic girls-only school, I enjoyed going to mass every day. I now understand it was my meditation routine. It was a guided meditation lead by the priest. It worked for me because it is difficult to quiet my mind on my own. Guided meditation works for me the best, whether is chanting or simply visualizing the words I hear. I’m able to work on different aspects of my life, relax, and quiet my mind. You can design your own guided meditation and recorded and play back to yourself. Guided meditation can help those that are just now getting started in their spiritual path.

Dynamic Meditation

I know people who have no problem with quieting their mind. However, their issue is not being able to “quiet” their bodies. They are the ones you see in yoga not holding still the poses, not being able to sit for a long period of times and not because it hurts their bodies but because it’s simply too hard to stay put. These are the people that enjoy always being busy and physical work. These people may benefit from dynamic meditation and Kundalini Yoga, where the body is moving while meditating. It doesn’t work for me, I have to keep my body still to go deeper, but for those that find anxiety in not moving, dynamic meditation would work best.

Mantra Meditation

Choose a mantra and repeat it. For people that practice physical yoga, there might be mantras they know from their yoga class. I choose mantras from my spiritual books and chant them. I also enjoy practicing Bhakti Yoga, which is devotional yoga, a way of chanting mantras in a call-and-response way also known as Kirtan. Attending Kirtan is a way of mantra meditation and even movement meditation if you dance. Mantra mediation and Kirtan work for me because it quiets my mind and calms me. Many yoga studies offer Kirtan in addition to meditation and yoga classes, but if you are unable to find Kirtan in your area, simply play a few Kirtan CDs and sing along. Sirius XM recently launched Krishna Das radio, so if you have Sirius in your car, you can chant while driving!

Meditation comes in different forms. Finding the right type of meditation and creating a daily routine will help you grow in your spiritual path.

 

Which of these above would you try first? Share with us your thoughts!

 

Photo by InboundDen