True Nature Travels Blog

“Ma’ane’i no ke aloha,” is Hawaiin for , “For love is here and now.” Every day of this summer has been led by love. It has been a journey of heart expansion. Since my first retreat with True Nature Education this past January in Santa Teresa, Costa Rica, I have learned that home truly is where the heart is. Living from the heart is a way of Be-in. It is not something that can be learned, rather it is something to be returned to. It is a home coming.

I have been undone by Costa Rica. I am being rebuilt with Love. Last year, I lived in Costa Rica for 6 months. I moved there thinking I would get married to my then boyfriend, buy a home there, have some kids, settle down, teach retreats, happily ever after, etc. Things do not always work out the way we SEE them working out but I know that we are all in good hands with the Universe. My plans didn’t pan out the way I thought they would. However, they have turned out to be better than I could have fathomed.

I left the boyfriend. I decided to move back to the States after my January Retreat. My heart is with yoga and showing others how to find compassion for themselves and the world by SEEING the world. This is a BIG piece of my Path. It is what lights me up from within. That is how I know. A great teacher once told me, “Listen closely to what the heart deeply desires and follow it with complete abandon.’ I knew I would continue to teach in Costa Rica . The retreat turned out to not only be a life changing experience for my students but for me as well. I was shedding my old snake skin to become an empty vessel for Spirit to use. All I knew from that moment on was I was meant to help others by using the faculties that God gave me. My inherent gifts and passions. I knew that I was meant to inspire others to do the same. I had no idea what the details between these points would be, but I trusted the Universal Spirit to take care of it… and so it is.

I made a vision board in early 2014. On it, visions of beautiful retreats and service work, a career and Path in yoga, yoga photography and modeling, singing kirtan and beyond, writing, having a beautiful home, paddle boarding and surfing, traveling the world and connecting with myself and nature in a way I hadn’t before. All of these have come to fruition in different stages since.

After Costa Rica, I moved to Boulder, CO to settle down and come back to after teaching retreats. What happened the following month after the move was totally unexpected. Boulder was highly competitive and my saving was dwindling. I know from experience that my Creator does not want me to struggle.. I prayed and meditated on what was I to do next. I had the inspired thought to call a new studio that had opened up just before my Costa Rica adventure. I asked the owner if there was space for me at the studio to teach full time… her response was that and beyond. I would fly back a week later to become a manager and lead teacher of the studio. This studio is founded in love. I absolutely LOVE Ruah. Through teaching at Ruah I met this wonderful lady who owns a stand up paddle board yoga company called SunriseSUP. She knew I was in love with surfing from my time in Costa Rica and thought of me for teaching with her in the Annapolis area.

I have been teaching all summer and while I don’t have the West Coast swell here, SUP keeps me connected to the water and ultimately keeps me grounded and humbled. I am a beginner at yoga all over again, both teaching and as a student. I am re-learning basic postures like Warrior 1. I absolutely LOVE it. It is ultimately making my earth practice much stronger.

My retreat for Jan 2016 is full and we are now checking into overflow options for guest! I am incredible grateful. I am preparing to launch a second retreat in Peru with True Nature Education (Stay tuned!). The more I TRUST in the Universe, the more I am miraculously taken care of in ways hadn’t even dreamed. The gift of it all is I can be PRESENT for these gifts today because of my continuous practice and desire to experience life fully. Join me for love, laughter, adventure, and yoga abroad.

Mahalo,

Alana

“I always did something I was a little not ready to do. I think that’s how you grow. When there’s that moment of ‘Wow, I’m not really sure I can do this,’ and you push through those moments, that’s when you have a breakthrough.” Marissa Mayer

Interested in checking out a Costa Rican yoga retreat?  Check out all of our retreats here!

True Nature Travels Blog

It’s getting hot in here…..

The summer heat wave is in full swing here in North Carolina. Those warm sun rays are bringing with it new growth, possibilities, and constant daydreams of hitting the beach.But, nature is not the only thing heating up. Hot yoga has hit the yoga scene hard and doesn’t seem to be going anywhere, anytime soon. Originally, hot yoga derived from the practice of Biikram Yoga which was brought to

the U.S. in the early 70s and became the most widely known form of hot yoga performed typically at 105 degrees. In the past 5 years hot yoga started to come more mainstream and has flowed over to many different styles of yoga, including studios devoted solely to the practice. Personally, I am a creature of habit. My practice, love, and obsession with yoga really developed during my young adult life in Los Angeles. And what a place to discover this passion! Options, teachers, and styles were endless. I really found my niche with power yoga and as a creature of habit stuck to this practice.Nothing in life is constant, and changes are what makes us who we are. I decided to make a major life change and relocate to the beautiful mountains of Asheville North Carolina. Once again, I found myself in an area whose yoga scene made my heart jump with joy. Embracing this opportunity, I widened my perspective and made a choice to try new styles of yoga.

And this brings me to where I tried hot yoga.

Hot yoga, seems to be a controversial subject. Some people dig it and some people don’t. There are multiple studies out there, declaring this practice is terrible for your body, and other studies that sings it’s praises. The debate boils down to whether or not it actually detoxifies, the amount of calories burnt, and whether or not the heat helps with the stretching of muscles, or causes artificial flexibility leading to injury.

Yoga Anonymous does a great job simplifying the benefits and you can read more on this here if you are interested: http://yoganonymous.com/eight-benefits-of-hot-yoga/ As for the counter argument, Time Magazine did an interesting study and can be read here: http://time.com/2967716/you-asked-is-hot-yoga-good-for youand-for-weight-loss/ 

I will let you decide on your own thoughts on the health benefits and risks. Both sides seem very valid to me. What I learned from the practice did not really have to do with the physical, but more of the mental lesson, to trust ourselves.

It was 6 am on a Monday morning in North Carolina. Mist still laid heavy on the mountain and I entered the room. It was hot. Really hot. Granted, I have been spoiled by the constant 75 degree and low humidity of southern California for the past 8 years, so perhaps I was being a little dramatic. I rolled out my mat and began my Ujjay breath. It felt heavy and difficult. The air felt thick and I was already breaking a sweat by breathing. I told myself to embrace it, that this was a new challenge of staying present and calm in an environment I was not comfortable or use to (which seemed to be a underlying theme the past couple months of my life as a whole, moving from the west coast to the east, is not necessarily a walk in the park). My body was gradually adjusting to the warmth, I tried my best to clear my thoughts, embrace the current situation, and then I was ready to dive on in.

The teachers Irish accent was as heavy as the air and I adored her. The class flowed and was a combination of vinyasa flow with heavier stretching. Overall, the difficulty and pace was less intense then my usual power yoga flow. But, it felt hard. I struggled. My mind wandered, I was pouring sweat, and I had a difficult time getting to my zen zone. Following the class, I felt dehydrated, my head ached, and overall I felt slightly frustrated. 

My dear friend joined me in this class. When the class was ending she rolled up her mat with a gleaming smile and said “Wasn’t that fantastic! Doesn’t your whole body feel alive?” I thought about this for a couple days. How could two experienced yogis taking the same class have such a different experience? And how far should we push our comfort zone to truly expand our perspective?

So I tried another class. And once again, my body did not like it. Nor did my mind.

I realized something very important, we need to listen to our hearts and to our bodies. We need to trust our internal instinct. Each one of us are on our own journey and what might be right for someone else does not mean it is right for you. And that is ok. That in fact, is what makes this world such a thriving and beautiful place, diversity. By tapping into our gut feelings, listening to our physical bodies, and allowing space to try new things, we get closer each day to honoring our true self.

As for hot yoga, it is not for me. But that doesn’t mean it isn’t for you. Do a little research, try a class, and listen to your body. After all, life is just one big experiment and learning experience. Trust yourself and explore more!

I would love to hear about your personal practice with hot yoga. Feel free to share below!

True Nature Travels Blog

Manifesting a Successful Retreat

 

meditationYour yoga retreat planning is in full motion and there is excitement, anticipation, and perhaps a little anxiety. Will I be able to fill all the spots? How will I get the word out there? All of a sudden, little doubts start to creep in.

Well have no fear. Doubts are normal and will fade with some positive thinking and manifestation.

Not to mention, True Nature Education is here to support you with your marketing needs.

We stumbled across a lovely article written by yoga retreat leader, Susan, for one of our favorite centers! Over the years Susan has led successful global yoga retreats and has shared an amazing write-up on how she manifested her retreats into being. Take a look and we hope it inspires you to get rid of all those silly doubts.

How did you fill your yoga retreat?

How did I do it? With intention, perseverance and sound advice. Everything in life starts with intention and requires holding that intention strong until the end. My intention was to bring my community together in the relaxed, warm and welcoming setting of Blue Osa. I wanted to share yoga and work on accepting change and stepping away from comfort zone. This intention gave me a sense of direction that lead me through self-doubt and fear of failure. When you have intention, it is easy to fill your yoga retreat.

If I could give you a grocery list for manifesting a successful trip, it would sound like this. Here are 12 tips on how to fill your yoga retreat:

Create the image in your mind

Ensure that the image is based on your truth and serves the highest good. (Be really detailed in your visualization with positive emotional triggers.)

Hold a Costa Rica Party

I had two, one in March and one in August 2013 for February 2014’s trip). I offered a $300/$200 discount respectively for anyone who signed up that day. People like to pre-plan their big trips, and for a lot of people this is huge! The party class was free. Past retreaters were invited and asked to bring a Costa Rican dish to share; and we enjoyed delicious food while sharing our experiences with interested students.

Create a trip packet and enrollment forms to inform and facilitate the sign-up process

Blog, share on Facebook and email regularly reminding everyone of the wonderful opportunity. It takes six times before the general consumer cognitively recognizes a service and has the impulse to act.

Offer a payment plan for those that really want to come but cannot lay out a lump sum of money all at once

 I required a $500 non-refundable deposit and allowed everyone to make whatever payments they could afford. The balance simply needed to be paid in full by December 1st.

Don’t give up

Sometimes the numbers aren’t exactly where you’d like them to be. Fear, doubt and insecurities will try to creep in. Don’t go there! Return and stay grounded in your positive feeling and visualized intention.
If and when you start to doubt, work on refining your agenda; develop a program guide and share that with participants and potential retreaters. People like to know what to expect. Reach out to those that you think might want to come and personally invite them. Request everyone’s travel itinerary. This not only helps you put together a chart of arrival and departure times for the resort, but it gets them excited and talking about the retreat. IT DEVELOPS MOMENTUM.
Make announcements, be enthusiastic and explain what students will experience or receive from this awesome vacation retreat.

Trust the universe!

Gifts are delivered in many ways. Quite often they are what you least expect. When you are grounded in love and services, God delivers wonderful surprises
Have fun and be in a place of abundance and joy.

Treat the event like a business plan

Who is your target audience?
How will you market?
What’s your goal?
What is in it for them? Why will customers choose to sign-up?
Advertise, promote, announce and talk about the trip repetitively. (I used Google Ads, Facebook, Constant Contact, flyers, class announcements, and shared the experience with anyone and everyone who inquired)

In short, leading a yoga retreat is no walk in the park, but it is rewarded by unforgettable memories and long lasting bonds. Set an intention and push through until the end. Take all the advice you can get and put it into practice to ensure a successful yoga retreat from start to finish.

About Susan Smith

Susan Smith, yoga teacher, guide and author of “The Power of Yoga” has been a dedicated student of yoga on and off the mat since 1997. With over 29 years of education and experience in exercise physiology, fitness and spiritual awakening, Susan developed a fluid style of yoga founded on her studies in Hatha, Ashtanga and Hot Vinyasa techniques. Her training includes numerous certifications from master instructors throughout the U.S. Each contributed to her teaching philosophy. She shares her vision, passion, and practicality with students worldwide.

Written for and published by our friends in the Osa Peninsula!

 

If you would like to book or lead a retreat with True Nature Education feel free to contact us at info@truenatureeducation.com

 

True Nature Travels Blog

Dear Friends,

A beautiful sunny morning, after almost a week of rain, rain  and more rain. I like rain, however I honestly enjoy when the sun shines! I am sitting on my table, typing this letter and baking a cake for my sister.

A mom’s life is something like this… We can work, clean, cook and care of the kids at the same time… The cake smells delicious and it is also for my mom, who came back home yesterday after her monthly stay in the hospital, the cake is almost ready and this is also for you…

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Yes, for you!

Thank you for booking your vacation through True Nature Education and for giving a special value to your fun, to your time, to your expectations. There are too many reasons for us to be thankful. I am so blessed! I have a wonderful family, a mother who is fighting against cancer and you know what, she will be the winner!

It feels great to be the bridge between cultures and languages. It feels amazing to know that your visit will make a possitive change in the life of so many people, because every step you do in my country, you are making a difference.

Behind the volunteer service, there is a happy family getting the benefit and a happy community improved. Behind the school presentation there is a group of ladies preparing a special present for the kids. And, it is possible because of you.

This year, we will have a party for the people in the community, on December 21. We do not have the Thanksgiving day tradition in Costa Rica, however it will be something like this after your visit. We are going to have a party, food and presents for the people in town, for the neediest families. If you want to join this cause, you are invited to bring something, anything counts. It is fine if it is a second hand article or if it is new.

Cake is on my table now. I wish I could send you a piece of cake…

Pura Vida and Happy Holidays,

LindsayCK_Costa_Rica_True_Nature_2014-190

Lindsay Padilla is a nature lover and mom of two boys. She has been teaching Spanish since 2006 and working for the development of rural communities in Costa Rica. She enjoys writing, reading and swimming.

Are you interested in learning more about the Costa Rican way of life, called Pura Vida? Our service programs which can be added on during any of our retreats include opportunities to stay with Lindsay and her family and support our efforts in their village.  Learn more here.

True Nature Travels Blog

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At first glance the holidays exude a joyful and spirited time of year. Parties and merriment abound while ’tis-ing the season to give warms and fills our hearts. While this may be true for some, for others the holidays can bring up challenging and negative feelings and emotions around the excessive commercialism of our society, grief and sadness over the loss of loved ones can be especially hard during this time of year and even the anxiety over the pressure of “new beginnings” with the New Year knocking on our door can remind us of our failed attempts at resolutions and intentions in the past. How do we find a balance? How can we cut straight to the real meaning of the season which truly centers around hope and possibility? Here are three ways to check in and reconnect with discovering your own “reason for the season.”

Make a list of what you love about the holidays

Make a list of three (or more) things that you love about this time of year. Is it listening to Christmas music or making cookies with your loved ones? Is it making homemade gifts or volunteering at the local shelter. Let’s be honest – they do not say “the hustle and bustle” of the holidays for no reason. It is so easy to get caught up in what might be not important to you at all during this time of year. By keeping your list close by and when things come up that you may not feel so comfortable with, looking to your list and touching in with one of those, you can stay close to what is important to you.

Create a space to reflect on the last year

We can get so caught up in looking to the New Year to see what “we can change” about ourselves that we often forget to stop and reflect on our accomplishments, our challenges, our ups and downs and what we have learned over the past year. It’s important to look back with thoughtful reflection and perhaps with a little more of that, you will find it a bit easier to look ahead with optimism and excitement.

Find time to give back

Regardless of whether we love or hate the holiday season, making time to give is not just something we should do once a year – BUT if that is the case, being of service to others is a straight shot of love right to the heart and truly has the potential to bring an abiding peace to your soul. Perhaps it is volunteering at a shelter by cooking a holiday meal or maybe it is choosing to make donations in your families names instead of buying gifts. It is ALWAYS the season of giving around here at True Nature and we love the holidays especially because of that.

True Nature Travels Blog

It is so very easy to get caught up in the hustle bustle of the holidays. Gifts, food, decorations, running around to see family, etc. The potential for this very special time of year to truly transform your life often gets lost in all of the “holiday noise”.  We want to remind you of the truly healing power of gratitude.

1.  It is scientifically proven that an attitude of gratitude can make you happier and improve your health.

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This list of benefits was compiled in more than 40 research studies on gratitude. Pretty incredible to see how living with a foundation of gratitude in your life affects each and every area of your life.  By shifting your mindset to what you have to be thankful for in the moment rather than what you don’t have very well might be the golden chalice to living a full, healthy, happy  and long life.

2. Gratitude helps us to be aware of the beauty around us

Not only does gratitude help us to transform our own inner lives, but we also cannot help but notice all of the beauty around us. The people, places and things that have been put in our life and on our path have all been placed there for a reason. We might notice our grandmas new Christmas sweater and think to tell her how pretty she looks in it. We might recognize something our partner does for us everyday, that may have gone unnoticed and share with them how grateful we are that they do these small things to make our life better, together. Even the sight of children playing fills your heart with gratitude to be able to witness the innocence and simplicity of life.

3. Practicing gratitude requires NO practice! You can start anytime, anywhere! Why not right now!

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Not matter where you are, no matter who you are, no matter how old or young you are – you can ALWAYS take a moment to pause, notice your breath and find something to be grateful for right here and now. Gratitude is the best medicine for a mind that is feeling stuck. Many people find it healing and helpful to keep a gratitude journal and either end or begin each day writing five things they are thankful for.

Be Grounded in Gratitude

Before the holiday rush truly hits – set a few intentions with us to stay grounded in Gratitude.

Happy Thanksgiving from all of us at True Nature Education!

True Nature Travels Blog

Have you ever wanted to “get something more” out of your family vacations? Do you want your vacations to feel more like a transformational journey, not only for you but for your whole clan? Do you want to have an experience that will create lasting positive change for you and those you love the most? Have you ever considered taking a service adventure trip?

1) Take a break from the “Normal” Vacation

Zipline experience

The normal vacation to each family might look slightly different, but it usually consists of going to hotel, usually the same type of hotel you have visited before, sitting by the pool, going shopping, eating at the usual restaurants, etc. When you take a break from the normal vacation and take part in a service/adventure trip you realize the possibilities that are available when traveling together. Your horizons are expanded and fresh memories are etched in your families journal of time, that in the end you remember much more than the “normal” vacation and inspires you to have a new outlook on a new type of vacation

2) Create a deeper appreciation for what you have

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There is nothing like returning home, especially when you have visited a place that is dramatically different than where you live. I remember returning back from a trip to the mountains of India where I had no hot water, still to this day, I have a sense of gratitude when that hot water comes out of my shower at home. On a service and adventure trip you visit places that represent simplicity, quaint beauty, at at times poverty. Sharing in the opportunity to visit places like this bring a sense of perspective on the world and also a sense of deep appreciation often when we come home.

3) There is nothing like being of service as a family

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We do a lot as families, work hard, play hard, laugh hard…But when we take a break from the fun and intimacy of our family unit and participate together in being of service something very meaningful often arises. I remember the feeling of humbleness and appreciation I had when I was young and watched my father serve a homeless person Thanksgiving dinner. When we are service we have a sense of aliveness. When we work to give back as a family we come together for a greater purpose which helps strengthen our family unit and sets a precedent to continue to be of service.

4) Realize a new calling

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When we take a break from our normal lives and delve into a journey abroad new doorways are opened that don’t necessarily close when you return home. We have heard numerous stories of family that have traveled with us, and when returning home have changed the trajectory of their lives. Kids who decided to start service projects at home, teens who decided to shift the college they want to attend, and even adults who decide they want to make a change in their career. When we take a leap, do something new and fresh, and give back to others we often feel a spark within that sheds a new light on life and possibly a new path for us to walk upon.

5) Create a deeper sense of connection of Love in your family

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As humans our greatest need is connection. When we are present with one another we feel connected and often loved. When taking part in a service/adventure trip you will be engaged together as a family, present with new experiences, and most of all connected with one another. Most of the time your technology will be put away or won’t work, the TV won’t be there, your work or school won’t be calling, and you will be immersed in the True Nature of your environment while also nurturing the True Nature of everyone in your family. When leading these trips, after a few days, I begin to see the essence of our guests begin to come forth, the walls and defenses that we often have at home begin to fall away, and their true colors begin to shine. Sometimes these are parts of ourselves our families have not seen in sometime or maybe have never seen. In this space of authentic experience and being we learn to appreciate and love one another in a new way.

True Nature Travels Blog

You can incorporate mindfulness into just about anything these days. Eating, walking, working, yoga, communicating. One of the most powerful places I have integrated mindfulness into my own life is in my relationships. My wife and I have embraced mindfulness practices into our partnership and marriage pretty much from the very start. But, it doesn’t end there! Now that we are a family of three – my three year-old daughter and I are finding our own rhythm with how we will share mindfulness together as well. I have found these following five tips helpful in all sorts of different relationships. You can apply the fundamentals of them into any relationship in your life.

1) Practice Mindful Listening and Speaking

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Now that we are a family of three – mindful communication with one another is more important than ever!

It has become a norm in our culture to speak a lot, speak fast, and to interrupt. The practice of Mindful Communication can be simple and also quite powerful. It is easiest to begin to practice with someone in an intentional setting, where you are carving out a certain amount of time to try the exercise. Choose who will speak first and who will listen. The person who is speaking has “the floor”and can share whatever they would like. A possible theme can be “How are you feeling now? What is alive in you? How was your day?.” The person that is listening, does just that, listen as fully as possible. The listener might find his or her attention wandering, (that is completely normal), when you realize you have drifted simply come back to your parters voice and words. When they are complete, offer a simple acknowledgment (ie. Thank you.) and switch.

2) Share a Mindful Meal

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One of our many retreat centers in Costa Rica serving up delicious, wholesome, organic and fresh food. It’s easy to eat mindfully here!

I know one of my tendencies is to eat fast. There are numerous studies that show the value of slowing down how fast we eat. When sharing a mindful meal with someone you have the opportunity to slow down and appreciate your meal and your company. You can begin your meal by offering a word of gratitude. Together you can appreciate what you are eating, observing the smell of the food, the presentation, and then together sharing in the taste of the food. To add another piece to this practice you could try to weave in some Mindful Sharing or even try out a silent meal where you don’t talk, but simply enjoy your food and your company in a new and fresh way.

3) Take a Mindful Walk

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My daughter, Jaya reminding me to stop and smell… the mushrooms!

Walking meditation is one of the most common forms of Mindfulness practice. Taking a walk can be a wonderful way to slow down, get outside, and share in the present moment with another. It is said that the slow and constant pace of walking can have greater benefits on the physical than many intensive exercises. When walking together we also have an opportunity to share mindfully. Practice mindful observation, where you see through the eyes of a child. Point out the beauty that surrounds. Thich Nhat Hanh calls this practice “Kissing the Earth together with every step.

4) Mindful Intimacy

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Having a little one, running a business and also supporting my wife who has a very successful career as a musician (and travels a lot!) requires conscious and mindful effort at times for us to stay and feel connected. Sometimes, we just need to remember to have fun together. I snapped this picture of us recently on our bowling “date night.” When you both know how much time and energy it takes to be together, you appreciate one another that much more. We had a blast!

Yes, of course, one of our favorite and most familiar places of authentically being mindful is when we share in intimacy with a loved one. When sharing in intimacy you have one of your greatest opportunities to be mindful. The best part of this practice is that it normally happens naturally. When we are being intimate with another, we are drawn into the moment and our mind normally settles into the comfort, nurturing, and love that is shared in a space of intimacy. Nothing to do, nowhere to go. Some tips to enhance your experience can be to sit silently for a few minutes before you begin, look into each others eyes, and try breathing together.

5) Create a Regular Mindfulness Practice Together

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From the moment we said, “I do,” we have made mindfulness one of the core values in our marriage and family.

Weaving awareness into our regular day life is true goal of mindfulness. But one of the most beneficial ways of practicing is to create a regular formal meditation practice, and to practice with someone else. Try to create a routine, where you meet at the same time, ideally in a place that is special to both of you. Be as intentional and reverent as possible, and use the presence of one another to support the practice. There can be something so sweet, simple, and intimate about sitting with someone in the space of silent practice.

Do you have any mindfulness tips that have worked or helped your relationships? I would love to hear them!

39523_165335256815075_7746876_nJoshua Canter is the Founder and Director of True Nature Education.  He holds a MA in Contemplative Psychology with an Emphasis on Mindfulness. Joshua is a meditation teacher, trained facilitator, retreat leader trainer, and  yoga instructor.  Since 2002, Joshua has been living part time in Costa Rica and in Asheville, North Carolina, teaching courses and workshops, leading retreats, and accompanying his wife, Luna Ray, musically she travels throughout the United States. Joshua is also a father to his daughter Jaya Arielle.

 

True Nature Travels Blog

The title of this recent article on Forbes.com by Dorie Clark caught out eye:

Why Mindfulness Is The Next Revolution In Marketing

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Mindfulness is one of our CORE VALUES here at TNE. You bet we were all nodding in approval to see this article! One of the leaders in the Fortune 500 Community sharing how incorporating mindfulness practices into your workaday (and life) helps marketers to “center themselves, pause, prioritize, and find their wisdom.” Um. COOL! #MindfulnessNOW #EverydayMindfulness

Mainstream mindfulness is not necessarily a new concept in the workplace.  Everyone from Google to General Mills, Target, LinkedIn, 15Five, and Green Mountain Coffee are “doing it.”

Doing what? What are these companies doing, why and is it making difference? Lisa Nirell, author of The Mindful Marketer: How to Stay Present and Profitable in a Data-Driven World shares that marketers have to step back and “stay in the present moment to deal with the complex tasks in front of us.” She says that Marketers are being asked to do more now than ever, with higher expectations and limited resources. Her training in yoga, meditation and Buddhism has helped her to “train her mind to focus,” and that can give one a competitive edge in the business world.

“To gain increased clarity, she suggests trying out techniques including nature walks, silent meditation, yoga, Tai Chi, and many others. Those who ignore these learning opportunities will remain stressed, overworked.” 

Wondering if you are practicing mindfulness while at your job? Take Nirells nifty Mindful Marketing Meter Assessment.

Check out the full article for more tips on marketing and mindfulness!

 

 

 

 

True Nature Travels Blog

10649628_846741095344087_8233548479623479912_nSheetal Ajmani is passionate about empowering others to live a life from their souls calling. As a pediatrician and yoga teacher she has found the perfect balance between sharing eastern and western philosophies of what the picture of true health looks like and it all begins with being connected to what feeds your heart and makes you feel aligned with your spirit. Her retreat next summer in La Fortuna, Costa Rica “Disconnect to Reconnect” will being students on a journey to take a needed break from information overload, set intentions and relax against the blissful backdrop of the jungle. More about Sheetal and her retreat here.

1. What does it mean for you to “be something more” as part of your yoga practice, teaching, and your intentions for your retreat?

To be something more means living my life to its fullest capacity. It means to live with an open heart, letting love and faith override fear and doubt. It means continually expanding my awareness and consciousness through my daily sadhana (practices) and then sharing that awareness with others through compassion and understanding. It means striving to always remember that I am most simply a peaceful, loving soul.

2. Who has been your greatest influence and why?

My grandfather. Although he passed away when I was only 12 years old and he resided in India while I was born and raised in the U.S., it was through his example that my interests in yoga, meditation, and ayurveda were ignited. He taught me my first sun salutation on a visit to India shortly before his passing. He was a true yogi. He dedicated the last few years of his life to an ashram that he created in India; he lived there and was active in the daily yogic practices, as described in the Vedas. I remember him often, and through his remembrance, I honor my family lineage in yoga.

3. If there was a yoga pose or mediation practice that described you – what would it be and why?

Tree pose. There are so many elements to this pose – feeling grounded, maintaining balance, opening, reaching towards the sky. Staying grounded in reality, in truth, and in my daily practices is so important to me. Maintaining balance through all facets of my life – work, family, friends, my own self-care, is vital. I always strive to remain open – open in communication, in understanding, and open to what the Universe has in store for me. And, reaching towards the sky – to me, this means continually striving for spiritual advancement.

4. Other than yoga, meditation, nutrition – what are some of your passions?

Music and travel! ☺
Music is food for the soul! I love going to concerts. I love looking around at all the smiles in the audience as the notes, beats, and lyrics touch people’s heart and soul. I love watching the musicians, completely in their element, with creative energy just flowing right through them to us. Music is just so powerful.
And, travel. I love seeing new places and experiencing different cultures. Travelling always leaves me feeling completely amazed at all of the magnificent people, places, and things that exist in this infinite world! I always find it so interesting that despite the varying cultural differences that exist, we are all intrinsically the same – we all have the same basic needs, joys, sorrows, and desires. And, I love that smiles and laughter translate the same in every language! ☺

5. What is on your “Costa Rica Bucket List?”

This is a tough one because there is so much to see and do! I am really excited about exploring the rainforest, both during the day and night, on the Rainforest Mysteries and Night Rainforest tours offered at Luna Nueva. And, I definitely plan to check out the Arenal Volcano – by foot, boat, or horseback is yet to be decided!

Disconnect to Reconnect – Summer 2015

View our entire 2015 Program