I hope you have had a great start to the Fall season! It’s hard to believe that we are just five-seven weeks away from the Holidays! I can already see my families calendar filling up with so many to-do’s. That is why this month I am prioritizing self-care for both gift-giving and gift-getting. I have made actual plans on the calendar for shopping days and relaxation days. I am a planner, and I set myself up each day to achieve what I have “planned out.” By having my holiday shopping on specific days and knowing what I am going to purchase my family and friends, I believe I will save numerous hours of time and energy. Purchasing our holiday gifts with planned intention will allow us to focus on the true reason of the holidays with grace, presence and love.
What about what you would want to receive this year? When your family and close friends ask you, “What would you like this holiday season”, what do you say? Probably, “Oh I don’t know, surprise me” or “Don’t worry about me.” As we mature it’s often time, experiences and reflection that we want, not more things that end up taking time away from “us and others” in the long run. These times, experiences and reflections foster SELF-CARE and can be called “Gifts of Nourishment.”
So this year ask for specifics to nurture and cultivate this so needed art of SELF-CARE. As you are thinking on your requests this year ponder what makes you feel the most balanced, the happiest and healthiest you. Maybe it is experiences with loved ones, adventures with friends and family, gift certificates to your favorite spa, wellness center, health club, restaurant or getaway. Or maybe its tickets to a concert, performance or creative night out, or cooking gadgets to make your meals even better. When you get the chance to redeem this treasured gift certificate or experience not only will you be reminded of this ever important need of SELF-CARE but you will also come back to your generous giver more relaxed, focused and happy. As it is often said, in order to take care of others you first must take care of yourself. Below are some of my top 2018 holiday season gift to give. And most of these can be found at Maryville Yoga Shala www.maryvilleyogashala.com
AMANDA’S TOP GIFTS TO ENCOURAGE SELF-CARE
- Young Livings Starter Kit– I can’t say enough about the benefits of using Aromatherapy Oils. I use my diffused constantly to change moods, get rid of germs and viruses in the air and just plan enjoy a pleasant fragrance. If you sign up as a member of Young Living you get an amazing Starter Kit with a diffuser and a plethora of oils to begin your oil journey. You can use my member number to get enrolled #11923111. https://www.youngliving.com/en_US
- Dr Singha’s Mustard Bath– oh this product…..every house needs mustard bath during cold and flu season. https://store.drsingha.com/ Combine this, Thieves essential oil and cough drops from Young Living with a bag of organic Elderberry’s from Amazon https://www.amazon.com/Frontier-Elder-Berries-Whole-Organic/dp/B000UVUHXY?hvadid=229157045237&hvdev=c&hvlocphy=9013386&hvnetw=g&hvpos=1t1&hvqmt=b&hvrand=7726673516650058048&hvtargid=kwd-300760703941&keywords=organic%2Belderberry&qid=1540806875&sr=8-5&tag=googhydr-20&ref=sr_1_5&th=1 and my recipe for Elderberry syrup Flu busting elderberry syrup and gummies . and you are on your way to well.
- Little Seed Farm Charcoal products– Charcoal is so absorbent and especially beneficial after sweating to remove the impurities that can out to the surface of the skin. I carry the salt scrub, soap and deodorant at the Yoga Studio. https://littleseedfarm.com/collections/all/products/activated-charcoal-detox-scrub-soap-organic-natural
- Teany Teas– my friend Anna Russ is a brilliant Ayurvedic Practitioner and helps others find their journey to become certified. She has developed a line of teas using Ayurvedic herbs to remedy sleep, inflammation and energy. There is a tea for each part of the day and they work and taste wonderful. https://teaney.shop/
- Manduka Mat and accessories– I am a big fan of Manduka Yoga mat’s. If you are someone who spends time on their mat you want to own a Manduka. They have a lifetime warranty and are made to withstand years of practice in all environments. To clean the mat use their mat cleaner and top the mat with a yogi toes towel with has a grip to the back side to prevent you from slip sliding away. https://www.manduka.com/
- Books– everyone loves good books! Some of my favorite books this year are Naturally Nourished by Srah Bitton https://www.amazon.com/Naturally-Nourished-Cookbook-Delicious-Ingredients/dp/0804185409/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1540406009&sr=8-2&keywords=my+new+roots+cookbook&dpID=51hHyxZdovL&preST=_SX218_BO1,204,203,200_QL40_&dpSrc=srch Dishing up the Dirt by Andrea Bemis https://www.amazon.com/Dishing-Up-Dirt-Recipes-Cooking/dp/0062492225/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1540406086&sr=8-1&keywords=dishing+up+the+dirt+by+andrea+bemis&dpID=61uvwe96bjL&preST=_SX258_BO1,204,203,200_QL70_&dpSrc=srch . and Ayurveda’s Beginners Guide by Susan-Weis-Bohlen . https://www.amazon.com/Ayurveda-Beginners-Guide-Essential-Principles-ebook/dp/B078WLDZZ8/ref=sr_1_1_sspa?ie=UTF8&qid=1540406175&sr=8-1-spons&keywords=ayurveda+beginner%27s+guide&psc=1 I also have many great books on Nourish Your Health’s resource page http://nourishyh.com/resources.html
- Banyan Botanicals– this company sells organic certified Ayurvedic wellness and lifestyle products. You can also have so much fun on their site exploring all the content they have on Ayurveda. These bundles are a great way to introduce someone to Ayurveda or give a perfect gift to for the right constitution or dosha. https://www.banyanbotanicals.com/shop/category/health-bundles/
- Paprika subscription– I love this app. And you have to get it on all your devices, so it’s not cheap. But it is so great! I search blogs to find recipes and cutting though all the content is time-consuming and frustrating. So Paprika does it for you and then some. Your recipe is created, your grocery list and your meal planner all with a click of a button. http://www.paprikaapp.com/
- Naturopathica– one of my favorite skin and wellness spa lines. I love the owner’s commitment to sustainability with clean products while creating true change in the skin and body. This year she has created five gift boxes based on what your holiday season ensues. https://www.naturopathica.com/holiday-gift-shop-2018
EXPLORING SELF-CARE AND STRESS MANAGEMENT: FINDING BALANCE IN BUSY
So when we talk about self-care I also like to weave in the equally important and inter-connected topic of stress management. The holidays can just seem to breed stress. But the whole point of this newsletter is to encourage you to get ahead of your shopping so that you can enjoy the real reason of the holidays, while continuing to take care of yourself. Yes, self care often seems to be an elusive dream these days with so many obligations and such little time. But self-care is now more than ever needed as a fundamental building block of a happy, productive life.
As a health coach and yoga teacher I work with clients and students in several ways to foster and integrate more self-care and stress management into their lives. I encourage you to look at these suggestions to see if they can be sustainable in your life.
Amanda’s top techniques TO FOSTER SELF-CARE and COMBAT STRESS:
- Know yourself. In Yoga we refer to this as Self-Realization. Become knowledgeable about your habitual reactions to stress, and work towards mitigating negative habits. The mind is said to be 1000 times stronger that the body. The mind dictates the responses of the body. That is why we work on the mind in yoga through physical asanas (postures).
- Practice calming techniques such as meditation and breathing. Train your mind to have present moment awareness. Use your five senses (eyes, ears, touch, smell, taste) which focuses you on the here and now, taking you away from the “chatter.”
- Prioritize sleep. Sleep is the precursor to all of your daily activities. Make a nighttime ritual to unwind 45-60 minutes before bed with some light reading, mediation, aromatherapy oils and then lights out.
- Exercise. Exercising with friends gives double the benefit as you strengthen your body while expressing thoughts and feelings that have been building up (exercise therapy). Exercising outdoors, also known as Forest Bathing or Shinrin-Yoku exposes us to Phytoncides which are leaves essential oils. Phytoncides are proven to increase physiological and psychological markers of good health.
- Partake in activities that release feel-good hormones, (massages, warm baths, sweating, exercising, giving and receiving hugs, laughing and even crying).
- Mindfully eat three balanced meals a day. Consume foods and liquids that combat stress: protein, healthy fats, vegetables and fruits, nuts and seeds, pure water, herbal teas. Reduce foods that acerbate stress: sugar, caffeine, soda, refined flours.
- Learn to create healthy boundaries. Say “no” when you need to. Keep positive people in your inner circle that lift you up and inspire you to be your best.
- Take a Sabbath day. We can only do so much in one day or one week. Taking one rest day each week is vital to restoring mind, body and spirit.
This time of year before the Holidays ensues it’s time for a Kitchari detox. Kitchari is an Ayurvedic stew eaten for a few days at a time when hungry to allow digestion to rest and heal. It is warming and nourishing on all levels and filled with spices that promote health.
1/2 cup of split green or yellow mug dal beans, 1/2 cup of sprouted white or brown basmati rice, 2 cups of chopped vegetables (onion, peas, green beans, winter and summer squashes, carrots, celery are all good choices), 2 tbsp of ghee (coconut oil if vegan), 1 pinch of hing (spice sold in Indian/Asian markets), 1/2 tsp cumin seeds, 1.2 tsp fennel seeds, 1/2 tsp ground coriander, 1 tsp ground turmeric, 1 – 2 inch piece of ginger root, 1 glove garlic, 4 cups of water or stock, 1 tsp sea salt, 1/2 tsp pepper
If beans are rice are not sprouted rinse thoroughly until the water runs clear. Wash and chop the vegetables. In a 6-8 qt pot put the ghee or coconut oil in a the pot over medium heat and add the seeds and spices for about 1 minute or until aromatic, (stir constantly and do not let burn). Stir in the onion, garlic and ginger. Add the rice and beans to this mixture and stir well to coat. Add the water to the pot and stir, bring the water to a boil over medium-high heat. Lower the heat to a simmer and place the lid on the top with a slight lip to let some of the steam out. Cook for 20 minutes with out the vegetable and then cook for 25 more minute with the vegetables added. Let this sit for 10 minutes after the 40-45 minute cook time. Add salt and pepper towards the end of the cooking. Top with fresh cilantro or parsley if desired.
MARYVILLE YOGA SHALA UPDATES
Sunday, Nov 4th 2018 3:00 PM – 4:30 PM
During a Sound Meditation Workshop participants can expect an immersive experience using the sounds of the Gong, steel drum, tuning forks, and specially selected music allowing body to find its natural balance while creating space for insight. People often find resolution for emotional issues and a sense of coming home to themselves.
* cost $20 pre-registration/ $30 at the door (pending space availability)
* herbal tea and conversation will be served afterwards.
* bring your favorite pillow, wear your most comfortable clothes, lay back, and relax fully.
Sunday, Nov 11th 2018 3:00 PM – 4:30 PM
In this workshop we will explore the asanas of Yin Yoga, how to use all of the props for support, learn to identify when and how to modify poses for stretching benefit, comfort and safety, mindfulness and body awareness, breath and being in stillness and how gravity becomes our friend. Yin Yoga targets the deep connective tissues, bones, joints, fascia and ligaments. Yin Yoga is an excellent counter to the more demanding, or yang, yoga disciplines. It is a perfect follow-up to intense work-outs by helping us to stay balanced, flexible and avoid injuries.
- No experience necessary.
- Please bring your mat and water.
- Cost is $20 pre-registration/$25 day of workshop.
Sunday, Nov 18 2018 2:00 PM – 4:00 PM
We will explore the dynamics of how to open and create space throughout the lower back, pelvis and inner thighs through aligning the body properly, creating the most effective posture sequencing and then subtle tweaking through the art of adjustment.
* Please bring mat, towel and water.
* Cost $35 early registration/$40 day of workshop.
To register please go to www.maryvilleyogashala.com/workshops-and-events/
Or call 865-850-5150
Black Friday and Shop Local Saturday specials: Come see me at the Shala in between classes on Nov 22 and 23rd for 20% off all retail. We will have gift certificates available to purchase for the following specials. And on Black Friday ONLY you can purchase the Founders Rate of $68.75 a month for a yearly unlimited membership of $825.
- $15 off each month of the 3 month membership ($95- $80).
- Two free classes added to the purchase of a 10 and or 20 pack class.
- $125 off the Yearly membership ($1045 to $925 – $77 monthly autodraft).
- 20% off all retail.
Until December’s Nourishing Newsletter
“Lokah Samastah Sukhino Bhavantu” translated to mean “May all beings everywhere be happy and free, and may the thoughts, words, and actions of my own life contribute in some way to that happiness and to that freedom for all.”
Have a great month friends and enjoy your health!