True Nature Travels Blog

Recently, I spent a retreat weekend in the woods alongside a community of yoga teacher trainees. And though a retreat weekend should embody a framework of rest, I entered it a bit frenzied. As I planned for the weekend in the woods, I realized, truth be told, there wasn’t much rest at all.

Then suddenly, in the last couple days prior to the weekend, plans started to feel like they were unraveling. A variety of life’s unexpected happenings suddenly erupted for several students. Several in the group wouldn’t be able to attend. Then, during the weekend, additional people had to head out early and most who remained were exhausted. Me too. By early Sunday morning I sensed that my plans for the day ahead needed to change. There was no way we were going to be able continue with the level of work I’d intended.

meditationI thought of the ways I’ve resisted rest so often and have been left feeling like a packed closet that hasn’t been cleaned out in a while. There must be times of letting go. So, instead, I took out a little sword of discernment and sliced through much of the schedule, dissecting away all that felt like it could wait so we could work at a slower pace. 

That afternoon, instead of continuing to press forward with new material, we turned our attention to tending the beautiful grounds and house where we’d stayed. We’d been tasked with a service project of raking the grounds around the house and down the path to a labyrinth used for walking meditation. I took on raking the path and the labyrinth itself. And as I did, I felt the land start to draw me in and work suddenly became rest.

It can be hard to let go of plans, to remember that pausing, setting down agendas for the flow of life as it is, to stand still and ask for wisdom about which direction to go rather than rushing forward with deeply engrained behaviors. At least for me it can be hard. Maybe you too. 

Yet, this day I stood, I asked, and this is what I received: first, I found myself standing in the center of old trees on an ancient mountain, under a sky blue and bright with sunshine. As I raked, I thought of the Buddhist wisdom to remember that we must still and always “chop wood and carry water” with the same level of loving attention as any other practice we may be doing. No matter what we may be doing to engage our spirits, to settle our mind, to become more engaged and connected all around, the work is of little importance if we do not return to the world of tasks, of the nitty gritty of life, with the same spirit of loving attention that we’d give to sitting on the mat. 

So I relaxed a bit as I raked, softened my shoulders, stopped plowing through the leaves with the rake like they owed me something. Instead, I let my rake move in rhythm with my breath, I paused every few moments to stand, breathe in the smell of the crisp air, turn my face to the sun. 

When I finally made it to the labyrinth, I set the rake aside, began the walk to the center. The labyrinth is said to mimic the journey of life, a journey that is circular, so that the way in is also the way out. There are obstacles, roots, switchbacks, stumps, and uneven ground to navigate. I found myself pushing forward quickly at first, walking at my normal pace. As the trail and obstacles continued, I slowed, I considered, I realized I was breathing and walking in rhythm, my mind no longer scattered but deeply present. 

In the center, a stone rests like a stool inviting a pause to sit, to witness the journey. And, though I almost missed the invitation, just as I turned to walk back the way I’d come, I recognized where I was standing, and I paused. Here I was, halfway in the labyrinth journey and halfway on my life journey, too, here at the start of the year in which I’ll turn 50. Perhaps this isn’t exactly half the life I’ll live, but somehow it felt in that moment as if it is.

So, I sat. I saw trees and sunlight, landscape that vibrated with some wisdom I couldn’t quite hear but that I wanted to listen for. I recognized that my walk forward from there would be a return over the same footsteps I’d already traveled. An opportunity to return, perhaps, and do them differently this time. I felt myself having slowed, having allowed the rhythm of the day to unfold differently, having changed the pace of my raking to allow it to embody the same wisdom as the rest that I’d received. I felt the way I’d been drawn into the center of this circle. It felt very much like I was sitting right within the center of my heart pausing to take in the cumulative steps of this journey so I might collect myself before going onward and out from here. 

teacher friend shared another way of seeing this experience is to envision the journey inward from the perspective of release, the space in the middle as the moment to receive, and the journey back out as the opportunity to return.” Release, receive, return.

I’ve thought every day recently of this perspective and wondered over it. What is the release from? What is it that might be received? And to what might I return? 

I found myself walking the winter wooded paths around my house this past week wondering and listening for an answer. I imagined the ancient paths my boots tread and felt like I’d created my own kind of labyrinth, not circular, but marked and worn into a predictable inward and outward journey by my own treading.

One particularly quiet morning, after a particularly frustrating night, just after a snowfall, the world seemed to hold me for a moment, still as if in the middle, receiving. I stood and watched the sky balance itself between gray and soft salmon colored light. I paused and felt very sure that this was as much a moment of being in the middle as any other. My life, all life, precious, unfinishable—how could I do anything more than stand and receive. 

Returning from it, into my life, I walked with something I might call peace. I had walked away from my home and perhaps wouldn’t have named it so, but it was a release. With each step I had let my life behind me, my frustrations and confusions and lack of control, fall away. Pausing for a moment I’d received life back to me again, more beautiful as I listened, waited, looked around with the promise to receive. 

And so, I walked back, returning more spacious, like some stubborn thing in me had given way, if but for a moment. I could feel the whole moment in my body through my shoulders, my face, my senses. It wouldn’t last. Contentment is like that after all, a tender bird that comes, goes, comes again. And perhaps the next time I walk a labyrinth real or imagined, I will understand the whole journey in an entirely different way. Perspective, too, like a bird—light as a feather and floats with experience.

But this day, that moment, I had walked a good way, and on the other side, I returned to rest for my soul. 

Sit or lie down for a moment, friend, as if you’ve walked from a place of release into the stillness of receptivity. Place your hand on your heart. Feel your breath move inward and outward. Can you soften the muscles of your face as if your eyes and mouth have relaxed into a gentle smile? Imagine peace has come to land right in front of you, like a little bird. Imagine this lovely little bird breathing softly. See if you can remain here with this delicate sense of peace and your breath for just a few moments more. Then return, friend, from here. 

Christa Mastrangelo Joyce, E-RYT500, a dedicated yoga teacher with a diverse background and a passion for accessibility. In 2009, she founded Jala Yoga and has been offering yoga trainings since 2012. With expertise in Ashtanga, Hatha, Ayurveda, Yin Yoga, and Traditional Chinese Medicine, Christa emphasizes anatomy, breathwork, and meditation in her classes. She brings a modern perspective to ancient traditions, incorporating storytelling and mythology to engage her students. Committed to inclusivity, Christa works to create classes that support adaptability and curiosity for all practitioners. Join Christa on Retreat!  Choose from Mexico, Italy or Portugal.

True Nature Travels Blog

In the realm of wellness and self-discovery, the connection between human beings and the environment is profound. At True Nature Travels, we believe in fostering a deep love for the environment by integrating sustainable practices into our retreat planning. Join us as we explore how conscious choices can transform your retreat into a celebration of love for Mother Earth.

1. Choose Eco-Friendly Accommodations:

Opt for accommodations that prioritize sustainability. Look for venues with eco-friendly certifications, green building practices, and a commitment to reducing their environmental impact. From energy-efficient lighting to water conservation initiatives, your choice of accommodation can significantly contribute to the overall sustainability of your retreat.

2. Minimize Waste with Thoughtful Logistics:

Design your retreat logistics with waste reduction in mind. Encourage participants to bring reusable water bottles and provide water-refill stations to minimize single-use plastic. Use compostable or reusable dining ware during meals, and work with local suppliers who share your commitment to sustainability.

3. Support Local, Sustainable Cuisine: 

Explore local, organic, and seasonal food options for your retreat menu. Supporting local farmers not only boosts the regional economy but also reduces the carbon footprint associated with transporting food long distances. Highlighting the richness of local cuisine adds a unique flavor to your retreat experience.

4. Incorporate Nature-Based Activities:

Maximize the natural surroundings of your retreat location by incorporating nature-based activities. From guided hikes and outdoor yoga sessions to beach clean-ups and tree planting, these activities not only connect participants with nature but also instill a sense of responsibility towards environmental stewardship.

5. Environmental Education Workshops:

Integrate workshops or talks that focus on environmental education. Invite local experts or conservationists to share insights on sustainable living, wildlife preservation, and eco-conscious practices. Empowering participants with knowledge creates a sense of shared responsibility for the environment.

6. Offset Carbon Emissions:

Consider offsetting the carbon emissions associated with travel to and from your retreat location. Collaborate with reputable carbon offset organizations that invest in environmental initiatives, such as reforestation projects or renewable energy development. This step can enhance the overall eco-friendliness of your retreat.

7. Mindful Gift Giving:

If you choose to provide gifts or mementos for your retreat participants, opt for sustainable and eco-friendly options. Consider items such as reusable tote bags, bamboo utensil sets, or locally sourced, handmade products that align with your commitment to environmental consciousness.

8. Engage in a Community Service Project:

Leave a positive impact on the local community and environment by organizing a community service project as part of your retreat. This could include volunteering for environmental conservation initiatives, cleaning up local parks, or supporting local sustainability projects. 


True Nature Travels Blog

At True Nature Travels, we believe that yoga retreats are not just about personal transformation but also about creating positive ripples in the world. Our commitment to community, connection, and compassion extends beyond the yoga mat. In this blog, we explore the power of Acts of Kindness as a means to build a stronger community, both locally and globally. Join us on a journey of heart-centered retreats that make a lasting impact through meaningful service projects.

The Heart of Service:

Yoga teaches us the importance of selflessness and compassion. At True Nature Travels, we embrace this philosophy by incorporating service projects into our retreats. These Acts of Kindness are not just gestures; they are opportunities to connect with local communities, contribute to positive change, and foster a sense of collective well-being.

Building Community Through Service:

1. Local Engagement:

Immerse yourself in the local culture by participating in community-driven service projects. From beach clean-ups to supporting local schools, these initiatives allow our retreat participants to connect with the heartbeat of the destination.

2. Global Impact:

Extend your reach beyond borders. True Nature Travels collaborates with international organizations, providing opportunities for retreat-goers to contribute to global causes such as environmental conservation, education, and community development.

3. Yoga in Action:

Our retreats integrate the principles of Karma Yoga—selfless service—as a way to embody the teachings of yoga off the mat. Engaging in service projects becomes a natural extension of the yogic philosophy, fostering a deeper understanding of interconnectedness.


Spotlight on Service Projects:

1. Eco-Friendly Initiatives:

Join us in environmental conservation projects, including tree planting, clean energy initiatives, and sustainable practices. Our commitment to preserving the planet aligns with the yogic principle of Ahimsa (non-harming).

2. Education and Empowerment:

Support local schools and educational programs. True Nature Travels collaborates with communities to provide resources, mentorship, and opportunities for personal and professional growth.

3. Wellness and Healing:

Contribute to health and wellness initiatives in the communities we visit. From offering yoga classes to sharing mindfulness practices, our retreats aim to leave a positive impact on the mental and physical well-being of local residents.

Join Us on a Retreat with Purpose:

At True Nature Travels, we invite you to be a part of something greater. Join us on a yoga retreat that goes beyond the ordinary—a retreat that leaves a positive footprint in the world. Acts of Kindness are not just gestures; they are the building blocks of a community rooted in compassion, connection, and collective well-being.

Embark on a journey with True Nature Travels, where yoga meets service, and together, we create a world of positive change—one retreat at a time.

True Nature Travels Blog

Holidays are a time of joy, giving, and unfortunately, a lot of waste. Practicing sustainability over the holidays is crucial due to the significant environmental impact this season can have. The holidays are traditionally a time of excess – over-indulgence in food leading to waste, excessive energy consumption for lighting and heating, and the generation of vast amounts of waste from gift wrapping and packaging. By choosing to be mindful and adopt sustainable practices, we can significantly reduce this environmental footprint. Moreover, the festive season, being a time when families come together, provides an excellent opportunity to educate others and inspire them to adopt eco-friendly habits. By promoting sustainability during the holidays, we not only protect our environment but also set a precedent for future generations to celebrate responsibly and mindfully. Remember, the best gift we can give to our planet is a commitment to its preservation.

With a bit of planning, we can change our habits to create more sustainable celebrations. Here are a few eco-friendly holiday tips:

  1. Gift Green: Consider giving experiences rather than material gifts. A class, a concert, or a trip to a national park can create memories without generating waste. If you prefer giving physical presents, opt for sustainably-made products, or better still, make your own gifts.
  2. Wrap Wisely: Each year, the amount of wrapping paper used in the holidays could circle the globe multiple times. Use eco-friendly alternatives like reusable fabric wraps, old newspapers, or children’s artwork.
  3. Feast Sustainably: Plan your festive meals carefully to avoid food waste. Buy locally grown, organic produce where possible, and compost any food scraps.
  4. Decorate Naturally: Avoid plastic decorations and instead opt for natural alternatives. Pinecones, holly, and homemade ornaments can provide a charming and eco-friendly aesthetic.
  5. Light Mindfully: Save energy by using LED holiday lights, which use up to 80% less energy than traditional bulbs. And remember to turn off the lights before going to bed or when you leave the house.

Let’s make every holiday a celebration of our commitment to sustainability, cherishing the planet that we call home just as much as we cherish our loved ones. Happy eco-friendly holidays!

True Nature Travels Blog

Gratitude is not just an emotion; it’s a practice that deepens our yoga journey, especially when traveling internationally for yoga retreats. Engaging in a consistent gratitude practice can enhance your retreat experience by fostering a positive mindset and a sense of connection with your surroundings.

Benefits of Gratitude

For the Body

Gratitude has a profound impact on the body. Research shows that people who regularly practice gratitude have lower blood pressure, improved immunity, and are less bothered by aches and pains. Expressing gratitude can also improve your sleep, leading to better overall physical health – a benefit that can greatly enhance your yoga practice.

For the Mind

On a psychological level, gratitude can increase happiness and reduce depression. It encourages positivity and reduces toxic emotions, such as envy and resentment. Practicing gratitude can increase your resilience, helping you to overcome stress and bounce back from adversity – essential skills for any yoga practitioner.

In conclusion, practicing gratitude during your international yoga retreat can enrich your overall experience. It allows you to be fully present, engage meaningfully with your practice and the world around you, and reap the physical and mental benefits that gratitude provides.

Why Practice Gratitude When You Travel

Traveling opens up new horizons, experiences, and perspectives. Practicing gratitude during your travels can amplify these benefits. It helps you appreciate the beauty, diversity, and uniqueness of each place you visit, fostering a deeper connection with the culture, people, and environment. Expressed thankfulness for the opportunity to travel and experience different cultures can lead to more fulfilling and enriching experiences. It can transform ordinary moments into extraordinary ones, as you become more mindful and savor every moment. Moreover, gratitude while traveling can make you a more responsible and respectful tourist, creating a positive impact on the places and people you encounter. In essence, practicing gratitude can turn every journey into a more meaningful, rewarding, and memorable adventure.

Ways to Practice Gratitude When Traveling

Practicing gratitude while traveling can take various forms, personalized according to your own preferences. Here are a few suggestions:

  1. Keep a Gratitude Journal: Every day, take a few moments to jot down what you’re grateful for. It could be a beautiful sunset, a kind stranger, or a delicious meal. This practice allows you to acknowledge and appreciate the small moments of joy and beauty in your travels.
  2. Mindful Photography: Capture the moments that spark joy or awe. It could be a landscape, a street view, or a unique cultural experience. Photography can be a form of gratitude, allowing you to appreciate the beauty around you and preserve it as a memory.
  3. Say Thank You: Express your gratitude verbally to the people you meet. Thank the hotel staff, the tour guide, the local vendors. Not only is it a kind gesture, but it also fosters positive interactions.
  4. Gratitude Meditation: Dedicate a few minutes each day to meditate on gratitude. Reflect on the experiences and people you’ve encountered during your travels, and allow feelings of thankfulness to fill you.
  5. Support Local Communities: Show your gratitude by giving back to the places you visit. It could be through purchasing local products, contributing to community projects, or respecting local customs and traditions.

Remember, the key to practicing gratitude is to be genuine and mindful. It’s about appreciating the journey, not just the destination. The more you practice, the more it becomes a part of your travel routine, enhancing every experience and making each trip truly unforgettable.

True Nature Travels Blog

In our fast-paced world, it’s not uncommon to think of mindfulness as something separate from our daily lives—a task we complete, a box we tick. We set our timers, sit down to meditate, and then proceed with the rest of our day. However, true mindfulness extends far beyond the boundaries of meditation; it is meant to be a guiding force as we navigate the complexities of this human life.

Mindfulness meditation is considered a formal practice, and I wholeheartedly believe in the importance of maintaining a consistent personal practice. Personally, this involves starting each day with my early morning meditation. However, there are days where it is the informal practices, those brief ‘moments of mindfulness’ sprinkled through the day, that really anchor me and keep me feeling grounded and connected. 

The spirit of mindfulness emerges when we seamlessly integrate clarity, kindness, and inner peace into the very fabric of our daily activities and interactions. This, my friends, is the essence of mindfulness—the ‘why’ that drives it. While the personal benefits we gain from our formal meditation practice are abundant, it’s our genuine intention that compels us to carry these insights beyond the meditation cushion and into the world.

So, how do we bridge this gap?

As we navigate our daily life, juggling family, work, friends, and leisure, including short informal mindfulness practices can be key. Think of these mindful moments as brief, rejuvenating snacks for the soul. In these moments, we pause to check in with our present experience, free from judgment or the desire to alter anything. We release our grip on thoughts and actions, instead focusing on the experience of the current moment, like asking ourselves “how is it now?”

It could be as simple as feeling our feet firmly planted on the floor, sensing the rhythm of our breath, or immersing ourselves in the symphony of sounds around us. 

These fleeting pauses awaken us to the here and now, shifting our attention from the busyness of our racing minds to the embodied sensations of the moment. With time, both formal and informal mindfulness practices nurture and reinforce qualities such as patience, inner stability, and resilience, enhancing our interactions with the world, its people and ourselves.

In the realm of meditation, it’s natural to anticipate moments of serenity and the inner stillness, the ones we yearn to savor. Equally common, though, are the encounters with struggle and discomfort. Mindfulness invites us to welcome it all, serving as a reminder that, irrespective of our preferences, the grounding and clarity we seek are attainable when we approach life with a sense of openness, curiosity and kindness, without taking ourselves too seriously.

So, mindfulness is not another chore to be checked off a list or a practice confined to a cushion. It is a way of life, a sense of ease that informs our daily existence, enriching our connection with the world and ourselves. As we embrace mindfulness in all its forms, from formal meditation to momentary pauses, we embark on a journey of self-discovery and inner peace that transcends the confines of any timer or routine.

Let’s try a moment of mindfulness together now…

I’d like to share a simple yet profoundly effective tool for shifting from ‘doing’ into ‘being’—the breath. Just pausing to take a slower, fuller, more conscious breath can guide us from incessant thinking into the deeper experience of feeling, from rushing forward to receiving what is here, and from gripping so tightly to a moment that invites more ease. Let’s give it a try.

Focus your awareness on the pause at the end of your next exhale and let it linger. 

  • Then, when you’re ready, begin to draw in a long, slow, steady breath, without rush or strain – noticing the sense of fullness at the top of the inhalation. 
  • When the time feels right, release the breath slowly, observing how it feels to ride the natural “letting go” of the exhalation. 
  • Rest once more in the pool of ease that resides in the pause where the exhale is complete. 
  • Take a moment now to truly feel, from the inside out, this experience of being in your body, with the breath, and in the present moment. 

This, my dear friends, is mindfulness in action. If you’d like, gently close your eyes and continue to savor this practice.

“When we approach mindfulness as something we “do”, it has a schedule with a start and a finish. When it’s about paying sincere attention, opening and learning, it becomes how we actually live.”

— Maria

Escape and rejuvenate with Maria and Richard in a tropical paradise. Visualize a week, where each day is bookended on your yoga mat, gazing at the Pacific Ocean. Maria and Richard are thrilled to curate this 7-day journey designed to reinvigorate your spirit. Nestled at the juncture of a lush jungle and the pristine beach of Chacala, Mexico, we will together delve deep into the time-honored practices, enabling profound healing and spiritual awakening.

True Nature Travels Blog

Many of us have the desire to take action to help our communities and the world but get stuck on where to start and what to do.

Here are 5 steps you can take to change the world for the better:

1. Start with yourself:

The first step to making the world a better place is to work on yourself. Identify areas where you can improve and take action to become a better person. This can involve things like volunteering, donating to charity, or making lifestyle changes to reduce your carbon footprint.

2. Educate yourself:

Knowledge is power, and educating yourself about the issues facing the world is essential to making positive change. Read books, attend lectures and conferences, and engage with people who have different perspectives to gain a better understanding of the issues.

3. Take action:

Once you have educated yourself about the issues, it’s time to take action. This can involve things like volunteering your time, donating to charity, or advocating for change. Find an issue you care about and get involved in efforts to make a positive to change the world

4. Be a role model:

One of the most effective ways to make the world a better place is to be a role model for others. Set a good example by living a life that reflects your values and principles. This can inspire others to do the same and create a ripple effect of positive change.

5. Spread kindness:

Finally, spreading kindness is a simple but powerful way to make the world a better place. Small acts of kindness can have a big impact on the people around you and create a more positive, compassionate world.


Remember, changing the world is a process that takes time and effort. But by taking these steps, you can make a positive difference and inspire others to do the same.

True Nature Travels Blog

Gardening can be a wonderful way to connect with nature and cultivate a sense of peace and mindfulness.

Here are ten tips for making the most of your gardening experience.

1. Begin with intention: Before you start gardening, take a few moments to set an intention for your time with the soil. This can be as simple as taking a deep breath and thinking about why you are choosing to garden. Perhaps you want to connect with nature, find peace, or grow your own food. By setting an intention, you are more likely to stay focused and present throughout the process.

2. Take your time: Gardening is not a race;  take your time and enjoy the process. Slow down and take in the sights, sounds, and smells of the garden. Be present and engaged in each task, whether it’s planting seeds, weeding, or harvesting.

3. Connect with the Earth: Gardening is a great way to connect with the earth and all its living beings. Take time to notice the insects, birds, and other animals that visit your garden. Appreciate the natural beauty around you and find ways to give back to the Earth.

4. Practice Gratitude: As you work in the garden, take time to express gratitude for all the gifts it provides. Give thanks for the soil, the water, the sun, and all the plants that grow. By cultivating gratitude, you can bring a greater sense of joy and contentment to your gardening practice.

5. Embrace Imperfection: Gardening is a process that involves trial and error. Not every seed will sprout, and not every plant will thrive. Embrace imperfection and view failures as learning opportunities. Remember that even the most experienced gardeners make mistakes.

6. Listen to your Body: Gardening can be physically demanding, so be sure to listen to your body and take breaks as needed. Stretch before and after gardening, and stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water. Pay attention to any aches or pains and seek medical attention if necessary.

7. Use Eco-Friendly Practices: Gardening can be an eco-friendly activity if you choose the right practices. Use organic fertilizers and pest control methods to minimize harm to the environment. Compost food scraps and yard waste to create nutrient-rich soil. Consider planting native plants to support local ecosystems.

8. Share Your Bounty: Gardening can be a great way to connect with your community. Share your bounty with friends, family, and neighbors. Consider donating excess produce to local food banks or community gardens.

9. Learn From Others: Gardening is a rich and diverse field with many different techniques and philosophies. Take time to learn from other gardeners by attending workshops, reading books and blogs, and joining gardening clubs.

10. Find Joy in the Process: Finally, remember to find joy in the gardening process itself. Don’t focus solely on the end result (a beautiful garden or bountiful harvest), but also on the experience of connecting with nature and cultivating mindfulness. Enjoy the simple pleasures of digging in the dirt, feeling the sun on your skin, and watching your plants grow.


True Nature Travels Blog

Stress is a normal part of work. No matter how much you avoid it, factors like heavy workloads, long hours, and tight deadlines cause stress. Over 61% of employees stated that stress caused them to experience tiredness and loss of control, leading to low productivity and inadequate performance. Additionally, stress harms your health. It increases blood pressure, causes headaches, and decreases immunity. If left unattended, you may experience fatigue and develop chronic conditions like heart disease. Learning to set boundaries and is crucial when learning to give yourself permission to relax.

Here are a few ways to start:

Learn to set boundaries

Creating boundaries prevents you from over-committing. Being productive and helping others is good, but too much will stress you out. This is where the importance of saying no and setting boundaries comes in.

Desk Yoga

Say no to responsibilities that aren’t part of your job description. Although you can occasionally accommodate requests, ensure these won’t eat into your personal time or add stress on top of your accepted tasks. Lastly, manage your time properly, especially when working on difficult projects. You can talk to your project manager since they’re responsible for delegating tasks and adjusting schedules and targets as needed. As such, they can help you and the team develop arrangements that ensure you don’t work longer than the required office hours. Paid overtime is tempting, but losing sleep and getting burnt out due to extra work only harms you in the long run.

Get some time off

Taking vacations or time off from work can bring guilt because you’re “wasting time.” However, this is not the case. It’s important to have your vacation when needed to avoid burnout. Reluctance to take time off will damage your health and workflow. When you work while burnt out, you won’t be able to give your best, which may result in numerous mistakes.

Consider scheduling your time off at the start of the quarter or month. This sets your vacation in place, so you’re guaranteed to use them up by the end of the year. In terms of activities to do, try spending time outdoors. Nature relieves stress, increases productivity, and boosts your mental energy. These will wash away all the work stress and make you feel refreshed when you get back. Consider our True Nature retreat to immerse you in the great outdoors through educational tours, yoga, and service projects.

Organize your workspace

You may not notice it, but a cluttered workspace decreases focus, increases confusion, and creates tension. Your brain gets overwhelmed by objects unrelated to your tasks, leading to stress. This highlights the connection between health and cleaning. Organizing your workspace brings feelings of control, increases focus, and improves mood—helping you relax.

Keep your space tidy by keeping unnecessary clutter in drawers and organizers. Only have the necessary items on display, like pens, notepads, and paperwork. Make it a habit to clean your space after work hours to remain consistent.

Take short breaks

It’s tempting to take advantage of productive streaks. After all, who would want to stop working when they have the energy to go for hours? Nonetheless, it’s crucial to take a rest. A study found that short breaks help boost energy. Experiment participants who took micro-breaks (around 10 minutes) performed better on tasks than those who worked continuously. Research suggests that breaks encourage the flow of new ideas and improve focus.

Set a reminder on your computer to take breaks, so you don’t forget. Read a book, solve a crossword, or refill your mug. Do something that’s not work-related for a few minutes to energize yourself. Stress has immense physical and mental consequences. To relax, remember to set boundaries, use your time off, take breaks, and tidy your workspace.



I am a freelance writer with a knack for wellness, travel, and nature articles. In my free time, I like to read classic books and attend pilates classes. I also enjoy tending to my home garden as a nature and wellness enthusiast.

True Nature Travels Blog

Cyndi Bulka Powers is a Health & Wellness coach and has been a Yoga teacher for nearly 30 years. She owned a successful yoga studio for 15 years where her yoga classes, workshops, and retreats touched thousands of lives all around the world. Her teaching philosophy is kind and clear so she can meet students where they’re at, regardless of experience, age or physical condition.

Cyndi encourages a non-competitive & welcoming atmosphere where everyone can thrive. With a strong background in anatomy, therapeutic Yoga and Thai bodywork, she’s keen on offering adaptations for whatever limitations you may have.

She is a mom to two wonderful adults, Nana to four beautiful grandkids, and partner to a wonderful man who is her best support. Three fur babies, an 1100-pound horse named Dak, an 11 pound dog named Lucie and a tamed feral cat named Stumpy are regular companions. When she’s not at the barn or on the end of Lucie’s leash, you can find her hiking the local greenways and trails, piddling in her organic garden or cooking up something fresh and healthy in the kitchen.

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Find your Flow with Cyndi in Panama

There’s nothing quite as relaxing as a tropical island surrounded by blue sea, where time evaporates & the rhythm of nature paces your days. Bastimentos invites you to immerse yourself in its tranquil, healing blue waters & delight in the freedom and playfulness it offers.

Water is healing & connects us to a sense of inner fluidity that we can use to deeply restore. This is our theme for the week. 

Imagine swaying on an hammock with a soothing island breeze, walking white sand beaches, napping in the shade, playing in the clear blue waters as you snorkel, kayak or paddle board.  Join Cyndi this May 2023 to find your flow in our newest retreat location, Panama!!