Tag Archives: How To

How to Get Through a Travel Dry Spell

It’s that time of year here in New England.  When the appeal of cozy-ing up by the fire because it’s winter goes away. The time of year when 50 degrees means windows down and jackets off.  You literally crave the sunshine and longer days (we turn the clocks ahead in two weeks by the way!).

It’s also the time of year that many of us are flying to warmer parts of the world.  To be surrounded by palm trees, white sand beaches, and a go with the flow vibe.  Three years ago I had just returned from Puerto Rico, two years ago I was planning a trip to Belize, and last year I was getting ready for Jamaica.  And this year?  My next plane ride is six months away.  That means I haven’t gotten on a plane in almost a year.

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It’s funny.  When you have this love for travel and you realize it really is sort of an addiction.  The past couple of months I’ve felt like I’m going through withdrawals.  I browse my social media feeds and feel this yearning to be anywhere but here.  To be experiencing new places, meeting new people, immersing myself in a new culture.

Well when time, or money, or whatever the circumstance, prevents you from taking the next flight out of here there are a few things that can get you through this travel dry-spell.

  1. Plan weekend trips.  Even if it’s just a night or two.  I guarantee there are so many places within driving distance to you that offer something new and beautiful to see.
  2. Plan your next big trip.  Whether it’s six months away or two years away.  Plan it so that you can start strategically saving for it and now you have something to look forward to.
  3. Find adventures at home! Try out new restaurants, scout out new places to go for a hike or walk, visit a new town.
  4. Practice gratitude.  Every morning for one week, as soon as you wake up, think about three things you are grateful for.  You’ll be surprised at how especially blessed you are.
  5. Make a reverse bucket list.  I had read about this a long time ago.  Instead of listing out all of the places you have yet to see, make a list of ALL of the incredible places you HAVE visited. Break out the photo albums!
  6. Disconnect.  Make it a point to put away the phone.  Close the laptop.  Spend some quality time with your loved ones.  Have meaningful conversations.  I dare you to do this for 24 hours.
  7. Create an oasis at home.  Whatever gives you that relaxed feeling…flowers, candles, or simply a room that is just tidied up.
  8. Buy experiences. Not things.  Research shows that people understand that making meaningful memories leads to happiness rather than just acquiring more ‘stuff’.
  9. Practice living in the present moment.  Whether through meditation, practicing yoga, or finding five minutes for yourself at home.
  10. Get outside. Connect with nature.  No matter where you are, breathing in fresh air cures almost everything.

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I Completed Yoga Teacher Training…Now What?

I officially received my 200 hour Registered Yoga Teacher certificate this week! It’s funny, I’ve been teaching pretty regularly for a couple of months now but for some reason getting this piece of paper signed by Mitchel and Tracy was so exciting!

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Every step on the journey to becoming a yoga teacher is invigorating, enlightening, and of course a little scary. I think for me, after finishing up our last weekend of teacher training, was when the nerves set in.  It all becomes a little more real.

You might start to question yourself…“Can I actually teach yoga?” “Who will I teach?” “Where will I teach?” “Will I make enough money teaching yoga?” “What if I’m a bad teacher?”

Well I’m here to tell you that you can teach yoga! You will find people to teach somewhere.  You will make some money and you will be awesome.  Continue reading

Five Ways to Stay Present On and Off the Mat

Hi friends! I hope everyone’s week has been a good one.  I’m currently on Hilton Head Island in South Carolina for a mini getaway.  We are visiting here and Savannah, Georgia until Monday.  It’s been beautiful so far…stay tuned for recaps next week!

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In my first few months of teaching yoga I of course find myself telling my students constantly to “be present.” Boy is that a loaded two word phrase.  If you are new to yoga you may wonder what does ‘be present’ even mean?  Why should I ‘be present’?  How will this help me?

Being present is taking your attention to exactly what is happening in this exact moment.  Focusing on the here and now.

The practice (yes it is a practice) of finding presence is what kept me coming back to my mat over and over when I first found yoga.  Finding presence is something that I have taken off the mat with me and into life.

Learning to be present can help relieve worries about the past or future.  It can be highly effective in reducing stress and suppress feelings of anxiety.

Here are a few ways To practice being present on and off the mat:

Focus on your breathing.  Start to notice your natural breath.  The length of your inhales and exhales.  Where are you breathing from? Your belly or your chest? Now start to deepen your breath.  Fill up your low belly, feel your inhale travel up your torso and expand your ribs, let it carry into your chest and pause for a moment at the top. Exhale.

In challenging poses on your mat direct you attention to this practice of taking a full breath.  Off the mat, maybe when facing a stressful situation at work or at home, practice this deep breathing and you will feel yourself naturally come into a calmer state.

Get outside.  Being outdoors and breathing in the fresh air always helps me be in the moment.  Taking notice of the breeze sweeping over your body and through your hair.  Breathing in the smells and Listening to the sounds around you, whatever they may be.  Taking five minutes to feel your feet planted into the ground knowing that you are being held by this earth.  No matter what happened before or what happens after the earth will support you unconditionally.

Sweat.  Whenever I’m in savasana, I turn my attention to the drops of sweat slowly falling from my head.  This has always helped me stay present and keeps any distracting thoughts from creeping in.  Literally focusing on one drop at a time as it falls from my forehead down my face  on to my neck making it’s way down my chest.  I’m telling you it works!

Move.  It might go without saying but getting your body to move is one of the easiest ways to destress and forget about distracting worries or fears.  On your mat this is easy but even during other forms of movement it can be achieved.  On a run try and focus on each foot hitting the ground one after the other.  In the gym try and focus on the engagement of your muscles as you lift your weights or pull on that bar.  Feel your body working and what it’s capable of.

Acknowledge and let go.  Alright let’s face it our human brains are extremely active.  It can feel close to impossible to actually turn them off.  We all know this and should simply acknowledge it.  As you try to become present thoughts will inevitably come up.  Instead of getting frustrated simply acknowledge those thoughts, let them go, and return back to your breathing or anything else I mentioned above.

Learning to be present has so many benefits.  The Huffington Post calls this practice mindfulness meditation.  They found research that even proves it reduces stress levels.

So the next time you are feeling stressed or anxious and worried, try one of these techniques and let me know how it turns out.

Off to Savannah! Have a great weekend everyone!