True Nature Travels Blog

True Nature is heading to a new continent!

We are thrilled to announce Morocco as our newest destination!

Marrakesh, also known as the “Red City” for it’s clay buildings, is a magical place in central Morocco. The city itself is brimming with markets, gardens, palaces, and mosques. The retreat center, which is located 15 kilometers outside of Marrakech, is another world compared to the bustling city, creating the perfect setting for a peaceful retreat.

This boutique retreat center is nestled in an old private olive grove on a 8.5-acre private estate with a breathtaking view of the Atlas Mountains. There is a pool, outdoor gym, outdoor cinema, yoga/activities pavilion, and a painted dining tent. The estate comprises three pavilions and two luxury bungalows, as well as outdoor areas. Meals are prepared the old-fashioned way – made from scratch, with a fixed daily menu that relies on local, fresh ingredients, some from our own gardens.

HIGHLIGHTS FROM THIS LOCATION

  • Menus featuring farm-to-table, authentic Moroccan cuisine with a twist
  • A small library of design books and guide books for guest borrowing
  • An African-inspired indoor dining space
  • The retreat center has been featured in dozens of magazines and television shows
  • The estate is comprised of three pavilions and two luxury bungalows
  • A grand reception area under a domed ceiling with seating and a fireplace
  • An arcaded terrace with tiled tables where breakfasts and lunches are served

We know you will love this location as much as we do, stay tuned!

True Nature Travels Blog

 

Equity & True Nature

The True Nature community prioritizes equity, diversity, inclusion, and social justice for our global family of participants, leaders, partners, staff, and students.

We value our differences. We are a multi-racial and multi-ethnic community. We come from mixed socio-economic backgrounds. We are immigrants and the children of immigrants. Our leaders, participants, and partners represent a diversity of histories and backgrounds.

We respect one another. True Nature is deeply rooted in the fostering of mindfulness and the creation of a loving community. We strive to build a transformative, holistic, cultural, and joyful travel experience in which we provide a gateway to discover the world and provide service through meaningful ways.

We engage in discussion and learning about power, privilege, and injustice. True Nature is committed to empowering our global family by connecting with cultures and communities around the world. We believe in the importance of cultural exchange and growth.

We evolve. We are committed to self-improvement, and to our part in creating a more equitable world. We work to increase access for, and to better welcome and embrace communities that have been historically marginalized and underserved. We invite you to travel the world with us and be a part of our community.

Our Values

True Nature is committed to equity and inclusion in our:

  • Retreats and Programs
  • Hiring and Professional Development Structure
  • Community Culture
  • Curriculum and Instructional Practice
  • Global Vendor and Partner Relations

True Nature is dedicated to these values and practices and will continue to learn and grow through the mission of becoming one global family.

True Nature Travels Blog

COVID-19 has connected the world in a way which has never happened before.

Through the struggle and the hardship has been born resilience and insight. The C19 Insight Sessions are an opportunity to connect to people of the world. A chance to hear stories of how this challenging time has impacted us in different parts of the world, in a very similar way. Join True Nature’s Founder, Joshua Canter for these heartfelt, thought-provoking, and insightful sessions which we hope you enjoy.

Episode 1 features an interview with Luca Francia from Tuscany, Italy on March 31, 2020.

 

True Nature Travels Blog

There’s no denying that the Coronavirus (COVID-19) has put a stop to almost all outdoor activities. With increased home quarantines and social distancing measures, cancelling outdoor adventures has become the new norm. This may leave you bored, anxious, and searching for ways to stay fit. We feel ya! That’s why we’ve put together this guide with ways to stay sane and active during the pandemic. Find the original article here.

How to Deal with a Complete 180 of Your Lifestyle

To give you a quick background on us, Reet and I travel full-time, most of it in an RV exploring top outdoor destinations in the United States, Canada, and Mexico. We spend part of almost every day mountain biking, hiking, paddleboardingkayaking, snowboarding or rock scrambling. Needless to say, our lifestyle and our company revolve around recreating in the outdoors.

When we’re not in the RV, we take an international trip to India for a few months every year (typically in winter), as that’s where Reet was born and raised. We love to visit family, eat incredible Indian food, experience and learn from the culture and expand our initiatives to help the stray dogs of India (our other passion aside from the outdoors!).

This is where we are now, on March 25th, 2020. STUCK, INDOORS.

That’s right, India instituted a mandatory curfew (the strictest version of a lockdown) across the entire country a couple days ago. This means we literally cannot leave our house, past our driveway. Our worst nightmare…but also 100% necessary. So, we are trying to make the most of it and practice acceptance. We believe that the Indian government is actually doing the right thing to stop the spread of COVID-19, and is taking this threat to the people of India very seriously.

So, to help you cope (and perhaps even flourish!) during this time, we want to share our top tips for keeping our sanity and what we are doing to stay active during corona virus.

Benefits of Staying Active & Getting Outdoors During a Quarantine Period

Boredom is not the worst thing about being stuck indoors. Staying indoors for an extended period can cause lethargy, restlessness, disrupted eating habits, fatigue, and moodiness. Spending all of your time indoors can even cause a weakened immune system – something we all definitely want to avoid during this crazy time.

Physical activity is also very important for both your body and your mind.  Studies show that staying active will help you manage your weight, lower blood pressure, strengthen bones and muscles, and recover from illness faster.

Exercise is also a proven mood booster, reducing depression and anxiety, decreasing stress, and improving sleep and brain function. All things that we could all use a bit more of at this present moment!

Lastly, breathing in the fresh air of the outdoors and receiving a healthy dose of Vitamin D from sun exposure can help strengthen our immune system.

But how can you enjoy getting outdoors safely while on quarantine or social distancing?

Ways to Stay Active and Get Outdoors Without Leaving Your House

Since we are homebound for at least the next 21 days, we’ve had to get creative around spending time outdoors and ways to stay active during corona virus.  The good news is that there are more resources than ever before, as gyms, studios and workouts are being added online constantly to keep up with the online demand. Even better news: many of them are free!

A quick visit to YouTube alone will reveal a thousand and one home workout routines that’ll help kick your butt and build you some abs before the quarantine is lifted. Below we also list some top gyms and studios that are also offering free online workout classes.

Workout in Your Backyard

No need to worry about going to a gym – they are mostly closed now anyway. Your backyard is waiting. Hanging out in your backyard will help you get that fresh air, sun and outdoor exposure necessary for your immune system. Working out in the backyard will help you emerge from the quarantine with those abs you’ve always wanted.

Here are some top gyms, yoga studios and other resources that are offering FREE online workouts!

Or, create your own workout with lunges, squats, burpees or your other favorite routines.

Sustain Your Body & Mind with Yoga

While in India, I was planning on taking yoga teacher training to become a certified yoga instructor. I started my course in Goa and was only a week in when things started getting a bit crazy in India. Cases started piling up, states started shutting down, and a full lockdown was looking more and more likely. I decided to fly back to Reet in Chandigarh just 2 days before they halted all domestic flights and am now continuing my practice as much as possible. I absolutely loved my time at Trimurti Yoga and can’t wait to go back once this is all over.

Practicing yoga is a great way to stay active during the corona virus quarantine.  Whether you are a beginner looking to learn, or a seasoned yogi, here are some online resources for your yoga practice.  All you need is a yoga mat!

Avoid Extreme Activities

These confusing days shall pass and you’ll have all the time in the world to begin a new activity or practice your favorite extreme sport if you so desire. However right now you wouldn’t want to risk hurting yourself and having to make a trip to the hospital. Hospitals are the worst place to be right now to stay healthy, and avoiding them at all costs will help limit the spread of COVID-19.

Opting for more simple, safer activities and ways to stay active is also a great way to help ease the problems of an already overwhelmed hospital. It’s the responsibility of everyone to avoid taxing medical facilities any further. France has even banned recreational cycling because of limited healthcare resources and the risk of injuries.

Create a Workout Challenge with Friends

Feeling bored or unmotivated with your fitness routine at home? Kickstart your motivation by creating a burpee, jump rope or squat challenge online with friends or family. Match or beat each others’ daily activities to keep your body fit and the fun going. Practicing a new behavior every day will also help you develop better habits.

Using a tracking device like your FitBit or apps like Strava can help you measure progress and report in to other participants easily. Don’t forget to celebrate your success in completing the challenge with a virtual high-five, and a plan to celebrate in-person once we are past this!

Take Your Pet for a Walk

Pets need outdoor exposure as much as humans do. Just like their owners, pets can be quite irritable when not allowed to stretch their legs outdoors. Follow our guidelines below for leaving the house first, and check on your local government’s quarantine rules.  If it’s allowed, take your pet for a quick walk around the block. It will not make your pet mentally and socially healthier, it’ll help you burn some calories, too!

Make sure to follow precautions though. Wear a face mask and gloves, and get rid of any disposable gear as soon as your walk ends for added safety.  Have a bottle of hand sanitizer next to the door to rub down before you come indoors, and change your clothes and shower as soon as possible, especially if you have others living in the house with you.  Allow the recommended 6-feet of distance between you and other people you may encounter, and under no circumstances should you leave the house if you’re feeling unwell.

Beautify Your Garden

Gardening is not only a great way to stay moving and keep your mind occupied, but a vegetable garden can help care for your food needs as well while you are in isolation!  Gardening is another great way to get vitamin D, boost your mood, lower the risk of dementia, and combat loneliness!

Spring is the perfect time to start digging out those weeds and prepping for a beautiful flower or vegetable garden that extends all summer long.

How can you get started?  Add seeds to your next grocery list (even better have them delivered!) and allocate a section of your yard to your new garden.  Here is a list of things you can grow quickly during your quarantine!

Camp at Home in the Backyard

Are your kids getting antsy indoors?  Missing that camping trip you had planned?  One great way to bring the outdoors to them is to take a camping trip to the back yard!  You may not get the full experience, but you can still make it a memory of a lifetime.  Pack up everything you need to spend the night (or weekend!) outdoors, set up tents, hammocks, camp chairs and a fire (if it’s allowed in your neighborhood), tell stories, and sleep under the stars.

One day you’ll tell the story about the time you camped in the back yard because you were under lockdown.

It’s also a great way to teach kids about flexibility, acceptance, and making the best of disappointing situations.

Challenge Your Brain and Stay Sane

Meditation

This is by far Reet’s favorite activity lately. Although Reet has been meditating for a few years now, he has always thought he’d like to do longer periods, or even go to a guided meditation or Vipassana at some point. That someday is now. Instead of filling his new free time watching the news, he has decided to extend his meditations.  Instead of doing 10-15 minute sessions, he is attempting 45-60 minute meditations and hopefully longer as he develops his practice.

New to meditation?  Resources abound for beginners to meditation. Reet started his practice using Headspace, which has a 10-day free trial, and hundreds of guided meditations through their monthly paid plans. A free favorite of mine is Insight Timer, which features practically endless guided options by experienced mindfulness teachers, plus sound healing, talks and music.

If there’s one thing we all need right now, it’s patience.  One of the best ways I’ve found to practice patience is meditation. A saying that I take comfort in is: “This too shall pass”.

Learn a New Skill

Have you always wanted to learn a new language? Become more competent at maintaining your own bike or outdoor equipment? Master a new instrument? Now is the time!

I am working on learning Hindi while we are quarantined indoors, and Reet is working on increasing his fluency in written Punjabi. Apps like Rosetta Stone and Duolingo offer easy ways to learn or re-learn a language and challenge your brain during this quiet time.

And in case you have been living under a rock, YouTube is the king of 101 EVERYTHING. Learn to maintain or rebuild your bike and save some money in the process! Or dust off that old guitar and learn (or re-learn) to play! There are endless things to learn from others on YouTube. It will keep your boredom at bay, and challenge your brain in the process.

Need inspiration for new skills you’d like to learn? Udemy has over 100,000 online courses with expert instruction on topics like business, design, photography, marketing and personal development.

Stay Connected with Family and Friends

Just because you are stuck indoors doesn’t mean you have to be a hermit. Take time to connect with family and friends over FaceTime or phone calls. Staying connected with the outside world is important right now, and talking to others helps combat depression and loneliness. This is especially important for those over 70 who are isolated. Check in with grandparents and other elderly friends and family at least every other day.

Leaving the House or Traveling (we say don’t do it)

Even though we are a travel & outdoors company, we don’t recommend traveling at all right now, and truly believe that staying inside your house/yard is really critical to stop the spread of COVID-19. Flights have been suspended completely in India, both domestic and international. We know that flights are still running in the U.S. but we highly recommend not traveling unless it’s an absolute emergency.

Many of our outdoor shops are shut down during this period to stop the transmission of COVID-19, and even some of our destinations are shutting completely to tourists (e.g. Moab).  We recommend spending this time planning out your next outdoor adventure, and choosing dates at least several months out. Even road trips are risky at this point, but will be a great option once the pandemic has been contained.

The most responsible thing to do is not to travel, stay put and perhaps explore locally, if you are allowed and it is safe to do so.

Before Exploring Locally, Check Your Local Government’s Rules

In India, we can’t leave the house unless it’s an emergency… and we believe it’s for good reason.

Governments are cracking down when it comes to ensuring that social distancing is followed. Before leaving your house, make sure you’re not going to have a brush with the law by checking your local government’s rules on quarantine and social distancing. Quarantine provisions can be different for every state – outdoor activities can be considered non-essential trips – so it pays to check.

If You Decide to go out, Preparation is Key

Getting outdoors during the Coronavirus pandemic isn’t just different because the streets are deserted. You should take precautions to protect yourself and others from transmission of the virus.  CDC guidelines explain how to best protect yourself and others, including washing hands frequently, maintaining appropriate distance from others, and staying home if you are sick.

During this pandemic, you can never be too safe or complacent. Don’t forget to include an alcohol spray or a bottle of hand sanitizers when heading to the outdoors. You might mindlessly touch metal railings and hold on to different surfaces. Having an alcohol or sanitizer ready wherever you go can allow you to enjoy outdoor sports during the COVID-19 can help reduce the risk of contraction and transmission.

If you do see other people outdoors, make sure you are allowing the recommended 6 feet of distance between you to prevent transmission. Symptoms can take many days to show up, so keep your distance from everyone – even people that appear very healthy.

Make sure you do not leave your house if you’re feeling unwell. Social distancing is meant to flatten the curve of the effects of the virus. When you’re not feeling your best, stay at home.

Staying indoors is an important mandate we ALL need to follow, but there are ways to still give our body the energy and vitality it can get from staying active and getting some fresh air. By following the rules, being extra careful, and getting a little creative, you can stay sane and active amidst this period of social distancing.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Julie SinghJulie Singh is passionate about outdoor adventure, wildlife and conservation. She spends her free time mountain biking, hiking, paddleboarding, and snowboarding, and she also loves to challenge herself with new outdoor adventures. Julie spent 15 years in Retail, Merchandising and Finance, leading teams and growing large businesses before she co-founded TripOutside with her husband Reet.

True Nature Travels Blog

Bees are known for their role in pollination and producing honey and beeswax. These insects are a monophyletic lineage within the superfamily Apoidea and are presently considered a clade, called Anthophila.

Did you get all that? You might have a pretty good idea about the importance of bees, but imaging saying that sentence to a child. They would look at you like you’re describing your 401K or tax filing procedures.

“Monophyletic lineage within the superfamily Apoidea and are presently considered a clade, called Anthophila.”

Way too confusing. Luckily, with a little help, teaching kids about bees can be a lot more entertaining and even fun for everyone involved. Teaching kids about how to respect and care for bees, which are necessary for so much plant life on Earth, is an essential step in helping to build a better, bee-filled future.

Here are a few great tips for teaching kids about bees in a fun way:

Abstain from employing convoluted dialect during discourse

…Huh? All that means is don’t use big words. No one likes to be in a conversation with another person and not understand 90% of the words being used. When talking to kids, you need to be even more aware of the language you’re using. You’re trying to make this lesson about bees fun. There is nothing fun about the word “eusociality.” Whenever you’re talking to children about bees, make sure you’re using fun and easy-to-understand words.

Don’t focus on fear

Since bees have the ability to sting, most kids are terrified of them from the get-go. Though you should inform kids about the dangers of bees, including sting pain and allergic reactions, don’t make them sound like monsters. It’s important to teach children about bees in a way so that they can appreciate them, and also so they won’t be afraid of them.

Use visual and tactile aids

Simply reading an article to kids about bees will not keep their attention. Not even for a minute. You have to make the entire experience engaging and entertaining. That’s where visual aids and physical objects can help win over your audience of young learners. You can bring in an empty hive, some honeycombs, a bee suit, honey, and a hunk of beeswax. PRO TIP: don’t pass along any of these items while you’re talking since you’ll lose their attention very quickly.

Include some fun bee-related games

Including games and fun activities is a great tactic for teaching children about any topic. Doing this will help break up the information the kids are attempting to absorb and will help them retain everything. Have the kids make buzzing noises, have them pollinate paper flowers with glitter, and build an imaginary bee colony of their own.

Plus, if you’re having trouble getting the kids excited about bees, you can always start talking about the way bees communicate and show them The Waggle dance!

Here are some important topics to cover when teaching kids about bees:

  • Different types of bees — There are more than 20,000 species of bees!
  • Difference between worker bees, carpenter bees, and queen bees — Worker bees collect nectar from flowers. Carpenter bees create tunnels between one and two inches deep and up to 10 feet long. The queen bee lays all of the eggs inside a colony and could lay over 2,500 eggs per day.
  • Pollination — Bees see all colors except for red. That and their sense of smell help them find the flowers they need to collect pollen.
  • Dangers that bees face today (pesticides) — Over the past 15 years, colonies of bees have been disappearing. Sadly, in some regions, up to 90% of bees have disappeared.

If you’re serious about teaching kids about bees — you can’t be too serious while you do it. You have to have some fun yourself so the kids can have even more fun. The more fun the children are, the more and engaged they’ll be throughout. Hopefully, doing this will give children a lifelong love and appreciation for bees and everything they do for the world.

True Nature Travels Blog

Enjoy life offline

In our modern age, it has become the norm to spend hours on our smartphones each day, thus exposing us to potentially harmful blue light and radio frequency energy. Overuse of digital screens can lead to eye strain, difficulty focusing, dry and irritated eyes, headaches and even anxiety and depression. At True Nature, our team is always on the lookout for ways to remain present and healthy regardless of the bustling world around us (and in the palm of our hands). The newest tool for mindfulness to catch our eye is from our friends in Peru, The Mudita Pure: Your Minimalist Phone. It includes all of the essentials of our phones (i.e. calls/texts, calendar, music, alarm clock, Bluetooth, and notes), but sets itself apart from smartphones with its ultra-low SAR, long-lasting battery life, and E Ink display. 

Enjoy life offline

With a regular yoga and meditation practice, it is impossible to not feel the negative effects of some of the products we rely on. And rely we do. Our phones have become such an important part of our lives that many of us feel naked or even anxious without it in our pocket. Imagine the freedom of releasing yourself from the bright display and programmed slot machine-style notifications of your smartphone. The concept of reducing eye strain is enough for us to get excited about this new product, but Mudita’s intention of freedom, joy and living in the present moment is what really solidified our interest in what they are developing. Visit our affiliate link here to read more about this back-to-basics approach to phone usage and to reserve one of your own.

self-care

True Nature Travels Blog

Yoga Guide

As more and more people around the globe are getting mindfully immersed in yoga, it has become perfectly normal to practice it wherever you go. If you are planning a holiday, or you want to organize your yoga retreat or go to one, you should strive to do your maximum to reap the benefits of it. Creating a guide that will incorporate everything you need to do can be challenging, but if you set your mind to it spiritually, everything is plausible with positive thoughts and a little bit of effort. If you desire to deepen your yoga practice and travel to exotic places at the same time, here are some tips that will ensure you’ll have a serene and fulfilling trip.

Visualize your renewal

Before you embark on an adventure of a lifetime, it is vital to visualize your aim of the upcoming trip. You want to find the location that would help you reap the mindful benefits of that yoga retreat. Very nifty advice is to visualize your experience. You need to search deep within yourself to find out what kind of destination will enable you to get the most out of your renewal. If you seek to find a place where you can reset, renew and recharge, try to resonate what will suit your best. For instance, if you want a serene ambient in combination with perfect weather and breathtaking environment, then you should consider a yoga retreat in LakeAtitlán, Guatemala.

Do thorough research

Very often people believe that is simply necessary to travel all across the world to some exotic yoga retreat to get the most out of your experience. Some of those exotic places like Bali or India are truly remarkable and do offer the most outstanding yoga experience that you can ask for, but they can be rather costly. Make sure that you get your money’s worth and double-check the prices of yoga studios and retreats. Do thorough research to find out whether you can really get what you have installed for. In addition, while travelling if you are planning to do a yoga teacher training program, it might be better to complete it in an exotic and renowned place. Search for an eligible and professional yoga studio that can provide everything needed to earn a certificate of a registered yoga teacher.

Pack with a positive mindset

Yoga travellers don’t fall into the same category as other cross-continental travellers. You don’t need to carry two heavy suitcases with back up clothes for every single day. Neither are you obliged to pack little mundane appliances like a blow drier or an iron. All you need is a few casual and lightweight clothes, if you are going to a warm area, a pair of slippers, Pj’s and an oral and beauty kit. Always have in mind that you are travelling for a greater purpose of indulging in the free-spirited world, so there is no need to over-pack with clothes and shoes. However, there is one thing that you will most certainly need, and that’s your yoga mat. If you are packing personal yoga mat, make sure that you find a quality yoga mat bag where you would place your mat so that it doesn’t get ruined along the way.

Take your time to find the most outstanding yoga retreats and make the most out of your travels. If you follow this guide and carefully plan out your travels, you will feel more inspired and mesmerized with the world around you.

About the Author

Morgan Rose Elliott is an aromatherapist, yoga instructor, animal lover, a happily married mother of two. She enjoys reading biographies and writing poems, sunny days on the beach and any shape and form of vanilla. Crazy about the ’80s, her favorite band is Duran Duran and she is obsessed with the Netflix Original Stranger things. https://twitter.com/MorganRoseElli1

True Nature Travels Blog

When there is a lack of ease in the body, it starts to create disharmony amongst us as a whole, leading us into a spiral of a loss of connection to the pleasures of life. Stress is a feeling of emotional or physical tension that can lead to us feeling forgetful, have headaches, a lack of energy or focus, tiredness, upset stomach, substance abuse, diarrhea or constipation, even weight loss and weight gain. It can be sneaky, so sneaky that sometimes we don’t even notice that these symptoms are being caused by it because we are mostly looking out for the big reactions such as: high blood pressure, skin problems like acne or eczema, menstrual problems, anxiety, and depression. Now there are many factors that can cause us to be stressed especially with rates of living and the environmental problems that we are facing in our days. Let’s remember though, with every problem there is a solution, and when it comes to helping the body there are MANY.

One of my favorites as some of you may know is food & herbs. Food is medicine, and it is a way that can help us integrate back into our environment. Food is a reflection of nature and nature is pleasurable. She’s sensual and inviting filled with life and even death but in a way that brings even more life. She is the perfect example of ourselves. Showing us how we too can find regrowth from the things we shed and how we can be resilient, vibrant, and nourishing. I’ve decided to share with you all something that I absolutely love and find extremely affective. When I feel stressed, overwhelmed, and uninspired, the one thing I mostly crave is something floral and refreshing. I want something to bring me back to the feeling I get after laying in the sun next to a cooling river stream, jumping back and forth from the water to the warm rocks, letting the sun kiss my skin as I lay in fresh air that is surrounded by trees. Feeling so alive again, so inspired, and charged.

Two words, Sun Tea. Yes, you heard me right. You can leave herbs in a jar, close the lid and place it in the sun for hours and it will pull out the medicine from the plants and create a thirst-quenching, restoring tea, purely for your enjoyment. Magic in a jar I like to think. Radiating, nourishing, sun magic.
The herbs I picked for this are especially good for Stress. Lemon Grass, Rose, and Lavender. Three simple but POWERFUL herbs.

Rose, my absolute favorite, is a flower of beauty first native and discovered by the ancient civilizations of China and then spread and cultivated by the Middle East. This is a large staple in the culinary world for Middle Easters but for the Westerners, we love to use it in other ways such as teas and tinctures. It is cooling, an anti-inflammatory, helps open the heart, aids depression, grief, and is used often in times of transitions.

Lemon Grass, another wonderful herb. Native to Sri Lanka and South India but now grows in many countries around the world. The stalks are very common in Asian cooking, but to brew the lemongrass to make tea is another potent method. Studies have shown that it helps relieve anxiety, lower cholesterol, relieves bloating and can help boost red blood cell levels. Lastly, good old Lavender. Since ancient times, lavender has been used to treat many different ailments, mental and physical. Mental health issues, anxiety, depression, headaches, nausea, and even acne. Other possible benefits for the heath are: sleep improvement, reduction in blood pressure, helps combat fungus growth, and can help lessen menopausal hot flashes. All these herbs have medicine that is so large and beneficial to all that we are dealing with as a collective. Even just the simple smells of them can help sooth our minds. Together, let’s start a new trend that can be so simple but yet so effective. Coming back to natures gift to help heal our minds, bodies, and sooth our spirits.

Recipe:

16 0z. mason jar with lid

2 tbl. dried Rose

Full pinch of Lemon Grass (enough to fill the palm of the hand)

1 tbl. Lavender

16 oz. of filtered water

Herbal Sun Tea

 

Place herbs in the jar and fill  with water. Tighten lid on then place in the sun for at least 4 hours. Longer is best! Then strain into another jar and enjoy <3

Together we can heal. I hope this brings you joy.  -Chelsea

 

 

About the Author

Chelsea Shapouri is a Lifestyle Consultant for women and an Elemental Yoga Instructor based in Santa Cruz, CA. In her work, she offers Ayurvedic lifestyle modalities, Yoga, Breath work, Meditations, and Ayurvedic Recipes. Every client and student is rare and special to her. Chelsea’s mission is to find their unique rhythm, their primal-natural state, and from there support them with techniques and recipes that are meant for their bio-individuality. Harmony for the emotional body, physical body, and mental state is the embodiment she lives by and wishes to offer. Bringing people back home to themselves with techniques they can simply do themselves is what she lives for. The art of service is the art of love and she shares what has helped her heal for the hope to help others heal. Stay connected to Chelsea and read her story through social media or her website: https://primal-harmony.com/

True Nature Travels Blog

Transformation and Change

Transformation and change are both part of life and nature and its seasons constantly remind us that these occur naturally. We must go through all phases in order to grow and although we might resist change, it will happen regardless. If we become in tune with nature, we can learn to flow more freely with the currents of life. Taking each season in consideration, let’s see how these might also affect us.

Spring – The season of fresh new beginnings

In the Northern hemisphere, spring is in March, just around the time when we start to manifest new beginnings and focus on the goals set for a new year ahead. In the Southern hemisphere, it begins in June, a mid-year shift of energy in which we begin to take charge on how we wish to progress forward for the second half of the year. The energy of this season is light and vibrant, bringing a sense of clarity and joy to the mind. Nature begins to bloom and the grey fields of winter get a makeover, turning green and colourful from the blossoming flowers. This is a period of transition, from the darker winter days to the bright spring vibes. As nature begins to come to life, so do we. It is a period of transformation for us also, and it’s not uncommon for people to shift careers, start new creative projects, end relationships or begin new friendships, during this time. To support this energy, it is a great idea to follow in nature’s footsteps and get a makeover also. It’s all about a fresh new approach to everything. Anahata or the heart chakra is associated with spring, which means we learn to open our heart to the new and trust that all beautiful experiences are coming our way because we are worthy of these.

Transformation and Change

Summer – The season of adventure

Summer is the joyous season. With the powerful sun taking centre stage, this brightens up our life. It is a time when we are most likely to be open to new adventures and exciting times. Summer is all about having fun, being outdoors and spending time with friends and new acquaintances. It is also a period of nourishment, as we are more likely to spend time in nature and in the sun, getting that extra boost of Vitamin D. The energy shift into summer empowers us to check in with our inner child, to be out and about and enjoy the sweet weather. As the fire element is strong during summer due to the sun, this might also bring out the passion in us, which we can use for any aspect of our life, whether it is love, new projects or simply living life with a strong passion. Manipura or the solar plexus chakra is associated with this season which is about feeling courageous and taking risks which empower us to feel confident.

Transformation and Change

Autumn- time to slow down

As nature begins to get moody with shades of brown and yellow, we also start to wind down from a busy summer season of fun and passion. Rainy days appear, which means our emotions may become heightened. Autumn is a time to slow down, to start making diet changes which fall into the season and take care of our physical, mental and emotional self. There is a lot going on in nature during this time. Stronger winds start to make an appearance which we can associate with the element of air, symbolising mental activity. The rain is about the water element, which represents our emotions. The temperature begins to drop, which means we might be running out of fuel slowly. So, it’s important to take a step back and emotionally work through what you’re feeling, releasing over-thinking and mental stress. Swadisthana or the sacral chakra is associated with autumn, which is about boosting our creativity and nurturing ourselves emotionally. When we balance the sacral chakra, we learn to flow freely with the currents of life and be open to the flow of movement and change.

Transformation and Change

Winter – A period of self-reflection

Commonly known as the time of hibernation, this is the perfect period for some self- reflection and going inward. Winter is all about nurturing ourselves, eating warming foods and spending more time indoors. The cold weather has a big impact on digestive changes, so it’s important to pay extra attention to the foods we eat and our overall wellbeing. Winter is slow and heavy, so we need to welcome in this shift, take it easy and relax. Although self-reflection is about spending time on your own, quality time with our loved
ones will also take away the “winter blues” feels and help us connect with others. As this is a period mostly spent indoors, we can also use this time for setting new goals, catching up on some journaling and work on our affirmation for the spring season to follow. Muladhara/the root chakra is associated with the winter season. Working on this chakra throughout winter is about becoming grounded, creating stability and putting down some roots…which you can start manifesting as the spring season arrives.

Transformation and Change

About the Author

Miriam IndriesMiriam Indries is a published author, yoga and meditation teacher, passionate about holistic healing. She is also a qualified Ayurveda Practitioner and NLP coach. A keen traveller, wondering soul and student of life, Miriam is the creator of Self-Elevation.com, online platform empowering others to find their greatness.

True Nature Travels Blog

 

April is all about World Earth Day, a great day of honouring Mother Nature and its powerful energy. Celebrating this, we can engage in different practices which help us connect with this grounding force and come in closer contact with it. This month, devote some time to bring alignment within your energetic self by focusing on nature and its beauty.

Get out in the nature and practice karma yoga

Mother nature is kind, powerful and loving. It provides us with a home and beautiful energy that boosts our life force. Find a beach nearby by, a park or any space in nature where you can go and World Earth Daydo a clean-up. It can be as small or as big as you’d like. Devoting some of your time to look after the environment is beneficial for the nature and yourself. Karma yoga teaches us to be humble and let go of our desires to receive recognition for any acts of kindness we do and this is a good way to do something with a good intention. Looking after nature is like looking after our body, because physically we are connected with all that is around us.

Take a walk barefoot

World Earth DayOne of the best ways to connect with Mother nature is to walk barefoot. This can be on a beach, in a park or on any land really. Connecting our skin to the earthy energy provides us with stability and grounding. Doing so, we also activate Mooladhara, the root chakra, the energy system in the body located at the base of our spine governing our stability and feeling safe and protected in the world. Practice a walking meditation and with every step
you take, feel the soles of your feet connecting with the earth. Here you can also do the Hawaiian forgiveness practice, known as Ho’oponopono, a beautiful way for a spiritual cleanse but also to show your complete gratitude for nature. Close your eyes and practice Ho’oponopono towards nature with an intention of love and honesty: I’m sorry, please forgive me, thank you, I love you. Show your love, gratitude and appreciation for it.

Plant something

Gardening is not for everybody, but once in a while, it’s good to get your hands in soil and plant something. Planting a seed teaches us to be patient and trusting in the process. It’s like giving life to something. If you don’t have a garden, you can go to a forest and plant a small tree somewhere. It’s about learning to recognise the beauty of nature and the vitality provided by the earth for all living beings. Plants are living organisms and they require just as much nurture and care as we do in order to develop and grow. The kind earthy energy provides this for us all, and being involved in the process is a humbling and unique experience.

 

Karma Yoga

Hatha Yoga

Asana practice is a great way to become more connected with the Earthy energy and bring stability and grounding within the body. Standing asanas teach us to connect our feet to the ground beneath us and feel in tune with the energy provided by Mother Earth. A great 5 asana sequence to try for this is:

1. Tadasana/Mountain pose
2. Utkatasana/Fierce pose
3. Vrksasana/Tree pose
4. Virabhadrasana II/Warrior II
5. Virabhadrasana III/Warrior III

Each of these asanas require us to have the soles of our feet on the ground completely and to find our physical balance. They also build strength in the ankles and the leg muscles. When working on this sequence, it’s best to bring your awareness to the lower part of the body, to the legs and the feet and notice how you are feeling as you become more still. If you find it hard to keep your balance, continue to practice and imagine there is a string connecting your feet to the mat or the ground.

 

About the Author

Miriam Indries is a published author, yoga and meditation teacher, passionate about holistic healing. She is also a qualified Ayurveda Practitioner and NLP coach. A keen traveller, wondering soul and student of life, Miriam is the creator of Self-Elevation.com, online platform empowering others to find their greatness.