A few weeks ago I was quite stressed out. I was running from one activity to the other and was trying to do too many things at the same time. Naturally this didn’t work,..I was tired and not able to be as creative as I wanted to be. Sounds familiar???
I then decided to do something that is quite against my nature. I completely stopped, let go of everything I had to do and took time out for myself. I forgot about the word guilt, stopped worrying about not doing anything and completely surrendered to doing nothing.
I joined my dear friend Natalie Almond on her yoga retreat at Swami Sarasvati’s resort (the lady who originally brought yoga to Australia in the seventies) in Kenthurst. Although I was very excited about spending a weekend relaxing and doing things for myself, I was quite skeptical about only having vegetarian food and drinking herbal tea all weekend. Would that be any fun??? I can tell you we had the biggest belly laughs (it was so much fun) and every meal was an absolute sensation of different flavours.
By the end of the weekend I felt completely revived (like I had been on a 3-week holiday), my skin glowed and I was super relaxed. Since then I’ve been able to hold on to that great feeling of being completely present and not worrying about the next thing on the agenda. With this my creativity came back and everything just seems to flow much better.
During the retreat weekend, we did yoga (naturally), but we did much more…We spend time in nature, meditated, did cooking classes, had a spa, learned how to do massages, and had lots of invigorating conversations with travellers from around the world.
Sanjay told me something very Interesting about stress. Stress isn’t part of you unless you allow it into your body. When someone tries to put stress on you, or if you are in a stressful situation, just blow the stress away with your breath – believe me it works, it calms you down straight away.
We also did a powerful, very simple exercise called Zen walking. At the end of our morning bush walk, Natalie asked us to walk as slow as we could and really focus on each step, rolling each foot from the heel through to the toes. I can tell you the first minute I was quite frustrated with the pace, but after that I really started to enjoy the slow pace and the fact that you are much more aware of what is happening – a great metaphor for making sure we don’t rush through life, without really experiencing what is going on.
I so much enjoyed this weekend that I am going back for more. I’ll be taking my kids to the family weekend retreat that Natalie and Sanjay are organising in the first weekend of October. I want my children to be exposed to this beautiful energy and I am sure it will be lots of fun for them with activities like tennis, swimming, arts and crafts etc. available.
If you are interested in this family yoga retreat, or any other retreats that Natalie organises, please visit http://www.anahatayogaspace.com.au/events-and-retreats.htmlTags: Natalie Almond, stress management, yoga