Mindfulness has become a bit of a buzzword. I find that the more something is used the less tangible of a concept it becomes for me. I like the definitely of Mindfulness that Jon Kabat Zinn gives, "mindfulness is paying attention on purpose, in the present moment, and non-judgementally to the unfolding of experience moment by moment". It is paying attention, watching what comes up, and letting go of all the negative, or congratulatory, chatter that goes on in the mind.
While I was taking my yoga teacher training I was fortunate to be part of a training that also included a mindful lifestyle component. In order to best learn how to bring this training to future students we learned through experience, participating in the 8-week course to more mindful eating, habits, and self-compassion. It wasn't about restricting what we ate, or what we did in order to cleanse or detoxify, but rather it was about adding in nurturing and nutritious components in order to best support our bodies.
In the past I have done many a cleanse. Often I found them to be harsh on my digestive tract, they "cleaned" me meaning that I often got bad acne, and I usually felt pretty low energy. I used to refer to these times as doing a detox, or doing a cleanse. I was realizing that it didn't resonate with me to think of my body as toxic or in need of cleaning. I was doing these things as a way to come back to equilibrium, but often the language around what I was doing felt combative and not in line with supporting my body.
The mindful lifestyle course developed by my teacher was different. It was about connecting with the body to nourish it. Adding in more water, greens, fun (there is even an activity where you are supposed to be bad), and doing daily rituals such as journalling to feel out how you are responding to the asks. It was about being kind to yourself and having someone help and coach you through the challenges. For that it felt much like a body nourish, than a body cleanse.
Although I haven't quite started to feel that Spring is coming since it is March and there is snow falling as I write this post, I have been giving thought to doing a Spring sweeping of my system. I'd like to help let go of some of the winter cobwebs, physical and mental, and find some energy again. I have spoken to a few students who I felt were feeling similar. This has led me to pull out my old Mindful Lifestyle information and to feel into how I could offer this to students in order to create a community where we support and coach one another to greater awareness of our bodies needs during this change of the seasons.
I'd love to offer a Mindful Lifestyle, Mindful Movement course this Spring and would like to invite you to join me. The course will run over 8 weeks and will include weekly coaching, biweekly yoga and sharing circles, and all materials. You are expected to journal daily, incorporate different wellness routines into your life (each week building on the one before) and weekly check-ins. If you would prefer to just do the mindful lifestyle component because yoga or meeting in person is not your thing, this can absolutely be arranged.
If you're interested, please be in touch. I am working on the particulars of start date (thinking early April), of location for the yoga and sharing circles and pricing. As always I will do my best to keep your investment affordable and am open to discussing options. If you'd like to learn more send me an email: firstname.lastname@example.org.