Many of the things that we ingest on a daily basis actually kill the good bacteria in our system. Learn how to add that good bacteria back into your food routine in this video from Pravassa founder Linden Schaffer.
Winter is here and total hibernation mode has set in. Instead of grabbing comfort food on the go or stocking your pantry with processed carbs, having smart snacks at the ready benefits both your wellness and your wallet. Snacking responsibly on protein, whole grains and healthy fats, provides a nutrient boost that allows our body's energy level and overall functioning to remain even all day.
Water-dense foods like fruit and vegetables and high-nutrient foods like nuts and seeds also curb hunger best. We love opening the fridge to forage for carrots and tangy hummus or apples dipped in almond butter. Try dry roasted edamame or date-sweetened energy balls to mix it up a bit. Best of all, every single one of these items makes it past airport security - we've tested that for you! Smart snacking can be a total game changer for your overall wellness. Take a day this week to plan your menu and stop by the market. In just a few days you'll be happier, healthier and feel a renewed sense of energy.
Connection to self is the portal for inner healing. By tapping into our strengths, increasing our self-care and embracing sacred stillness, we become more empowered to recreate the life we want to live by healing from within. Here are four ways that you can rediscover your inner healer.
Sacred Stillness Perpetual busyness is our modern day epidemic. Slowing down takes intention and energy. Pico Iyer says, "In an age of movement, nothing is more critical than stillness." Buddha taught that because we are alive, we suffer. But we are often taught to seek pleasure and avoid pain. Stillness is the sacred medicine that allows us to deeply sense and observe our suffering ~ and with intention, we can respond with the compassion our soul needs. Truly, the source of our power stems from the wounds of our pain.
Learn Abundance From Nature These days, we often become entangled in our scarcity consciousness ~ believing we never have enough money, success or even love. Nature is resilient, constantly dying, absorbing nourishment, regenerating and blossoming into the future. Though we can't see those seedlings sprouting underneath the frozen earth, we trust fully that growth is unfolding. Connecting to nature with presence reconnects us to the healer within. Belief is powerful. Believing that we belong to the natural world opens up our hearts and minds to the circular gifts of abundance that nature offers.
Connect Mind and Body through Whole Foods In our fast paced world, it's not easy to eat whole foods, cook or have a meal with loved ones. But when we begin to focus our attention on how food feels in your body, we can embrace a more powerful mind body connection. The first step in making any change is increased awareness. Intentionally choosing foods that will give us energy, clarity and satisfaction, empowers us to feel more in control of our life, our health, and our emotions.
Intuitive Wisdom Intuitive wisdom often comes in a whisper, an emotion, or a gentle knowing. Silencing our inner critic or "busy brain" is one key way of creating connection within, opening our hearts to receive those quiet, wise messages. Tapping into our own sense of intuitive wisdom can be an incredibly powerful force to help us make decisions, have a more clear sense of self, and establish positive goals for the future. As we increase our self-care, sitting quietly in nature or another sacred place, we can learn how to listen to our intuitive self and reconnect to our wise healer within.
Each one of us possesses an inner healer. To excavate your own join us as we co-lead Pravassa's upcoming Holistic Healing Wellness Vacation in Santa Fe, May 18th-22nd. We’d be honored to be your guides - Lena Franklin, LCSW + Meghan Toups, LPC
Textile & Clothing Designer
Most recently in: San Francisco and Oregon
The one snack you can always find in my carry on is: If possible avocados and if not possible then my award winning homemade granola.
Tell us your in-flight rituals. I wipe down my area with a lavender essential oil wipe and make sure to book the window. I bring a large soft scarf that can double as a blanket or roll up as a pillow, you never know if it will be hot or cold on the plane. My face tends to get dry so I like to have rose water on hand as well.
How do you conquer jet lag once you've arrived? That's a hard one! I'm not great at 'pushing through' ... I crash if I feel like crashing, usually a gentle yoga class or massage helps me to reset.
Describe your workout on the road style: I'm more of an outdoor adventure type especially when I'm on the road, it's fun to explore where I am with a walk or a jog. Often I'll check out the local yoga studio too.
How do you keep sickness at bay? Being a mom and a business owner you can imagine I don't have time to be sick! I've developed a technique for when I feel the slightest thing come on - I will drink a huge mason jar of an immune boosting tea with ginger, raw Manuka honey and lemon, take liquid chlorophyll, ingest my On Guard essential oil from DoTerra and then sleep a good 12-hours. This usually wards off most sickness.
What's your 'go-to' restaurant item? Usually anything with avocados they really keep me sane on the road or a salad with a nice clean protein.
What do you do to stay grounded? I like to clear the energy of the space I'm staying. If I can burn a little palo santo it always brings me home. I carry a small array of crystals when I travel so I can make an altar wherever I go. Reiki is a daily practice for me so that also helps immensely.
What is your preferred method of staying connected with loved ones? I'm a text-aholic!
When not designing her latest clothing line, Victoria can be found in Sound Balancing trainings and Crystal Grid workshops. You can follow Victoria's adventures on the road via Facebook and Instagram .
We found the epicenter of chic in Cambodia: Siem Reap. From the well known attraction of Angkor Wat to the impressive ancient monuments, we discovered so many spectacular sights and were welcomed into some unique experiences it wasn't fair to keep it all to ourselves. And while we typically prefer walking around new cities, the heat and humidity in Siem Reap limits the distances you can comfortably explore on foot, hence the smiling photo of Sarah in a Tuk-Tuk about. We invite you to click on the photos below to explore our latest wellness travel finds.
Interested in booking a #customWELL itinerary to Cambodia? Click here.
Where you find this wellness ritual: Canada & The United States
Prescribed for: Energy clearing, protection, purification
If you've moved into a new place, have had an argument in your home, or are beginning a new ritual or practice, you might want to consider smudging home or even yourself with sage. This Native American ceremonial ritual of sage burning is used to cleanse the air and protect your spiritual well-being.
Sage creates a thick smoke when burning so be sure to open a window or door before you light up. Once going, offer the sage to the four corner of the world - North, South, East and West - asking for a blessing or protection. Next fan the smoke over yourself or the space you wish to clear drawing out all the negative energy. Be sure you end your smudging ritual at that open door or window so to invite all negative energy you just cleared to leave.
For us January always brings anticipation, excitement and the chance to hit the restart button. It's the culmination of a year and the start of a new path that we get to cultivate. While goals can be set any time of the year, January is often starting point because often the holiday affords us time off of our daily routine where we can sit and just be, even if it's for a few seconds.
Sadly after the glow of New Year's has faded and day 10 arrives, most goals are gone if not forgotten. So how do you make them stick? Try these 5 tips to get you to the finish line.
1. Decide you truly want change.
Okay sound obvious, but really think about the goals you will be setting. Are they things you are willing to work for? If not, you’re wasting your time. If you want something to work you have put in the time. You're not making a wish, you're making a change.
2. Pick a few realistic goals.
Don’t overwhelm yourself with a crazy to do list; you’ll be defeated before you ever begin. Instead, pick a few big goals that you want to work toward and break them down into realistic bite size pieces. When you have small steps toward that big goal you can measure your progress, which makes you feel accomplished and helps you stay on track.
3. Write it down - everywhere.
Once you write something down, it becomes a bit more permanent. Put up your goals as a reminder where you can see them everyday like on a sticky note stuck to your computer. If you don't want the whole list visible, pick your next step and toss it when you're done. Remember: out of sight, out of mind!
4. Revamp your goals throughout the year.
Goals propel you forward so it makes sense that along the path toward accomplishment things are going to change or life may throw up a few road blocks. You hold the power. Shift your plans, take a step back, but keep your eye on the prize.
5. Stay positive.
No one's perfect. It is easy to get excited when thinking about goals, but just as easy to get derailed if things are hard or not going the way you planned. This doesn’t mean things aren’t happening or that you are not trying. Stay positive and try again tomorrow.
We love a good hot yoga class, especially in the winter months. There is nothing quite like sweating it all out indoors as the cold rages on outside. Lucky for us, NYC is packed with hot yoga studios and multiple locations of Yoga to the People, which helped start the low cost/donation based class model.
Our last post-work workout had us clamoring into the Midtown studio on 38th St where classes are Vinyasa based and accessible to both beginners and experienced yogis alike. We rolled out our mat, smiled at our neighbor and got right into a hefty rotation of chair and plank poses. As the instructor wove in and out of mat-to-mat yogis providing assistance, the strong beats of the indie music mix (Bon Iver and Fleet Foxes) kept us motivated even when we just wanted to lie down in the warm room. Class ended in savasana accompanied by Tibetan singing bowls, which had us drifting into a pure state of bliss.
Classes fill up quickly, especially in the evening hours, so arrive early to secure your spot. Towel rental is available and mats are sold incase you left home without one. With no showers available and the changing rooms quite small, it’s best to plan ahead knowing that you’ll have to find another shower solution. - Paige Halleland
COST: $5 - 10 (varies by location) LENGTH: 60 - 90 MINUTES
EXECUTIVE COACH & ENTREPRENEUR
Most recently in: San Sebastian, Spain and Munich, Germany
The one snack you can always find in my carry-on is: One cup of raw almonds, one cup whole oats (because, in a pinch, I can find hot water or steamed milk), two single-serving packs of VEGA ONE Natural flavor, several tea bags (mostly green or hibiscus) and water. One of these things usually gets me through flight delays, long waits and taxi rides. Most importantly, it prevents me from getting hangry!
Tell us your in-flight rituals: I use in-flight hours as a time reflect, plan and iterate ideas that are percolating. I start by putting on my headphones to meditate for at least 30 minutes. Next I whip out my journal and colored pens to write/draw, crystalize ideas, identify collaborators, define execution milestones and timelines.
How do you conquer jet lag once you've arrived? I let friends or colleagues know up front that I need alone time. I make time for a short yoga flow. Sometimes it’s five minutes, sometimes it’s an hour. Asking for what I need has become a critical habit that I practice and have gained more and more mastery of over the years. Above all else, I listen to my body and ask for what I need.
Describe your workout on the road style: When I am on the road I like to be outdoors, keep my body moving, get lost and explore. One on the road workout habit is to walk rather than taxi or subway. I also look for hiking or biking areas that locals favor as these are ways for me get familiar with the local vibe. Also, I stop drop and yoga pretty much anywhere: in the back of the airplane, on the beach, in the town square - a lot of times locals or other travelers join. It's my way of staying true to my practice and inviting others to engage through movement.
How do you keep sickness at bay? Daily yoga, raw juice, supplements, water and small meals throughout the day.
What's your 'go-to' restaurant item? My go-to depends on where I am on the globe and what I’m doing –so it’s situational. If I am feeling like comfort food in the morning and know my next meal might be delayed, I go for porridge or oatmeal. When I need something lighter, I opt for fruit, a juice or a smoothie. I love pomegranate and green juice or a green smoothie. For later in the day it’s usually easy to find steamed veggies and fish.
What do you do to stay grounded? My yoga practice is consistently my way back to center. I make time to practice everyday no matter where I’ve landed. I love practicing yoga in studios around the world where the class is lead in a language I do not speak. It makes familiar things feel new and new things feel familiar. It grounds me.
What is your preferred method of staying connected with loved ones? I use Google Hangout and social media a lot on the road. There are times however, when I choose to go radio silent. I think we all need that sometimes. Thankfully my loved ones understand that for me silence and solitude is a way of connecting.
About Terri: Originally from Los Angeles,Terri Simon spent 20+ years focused on a career in Organizational Development, Organizational Behavior and Human Capital Strategies, including process, leadership and executive development. She worked and lived in Japan and China, focusing on culture transformation, executive coaching and team development. After extensive time traveling, Ms. Simon is most at home among new cultures, in remote landscapes and in far away places. Follow her adventures on Instagram or join Terri for upcoming leadership development course.
In a city of 21 million people it's hard to find alone time or private space. This means carving wellness in the midsts of chaotic Mumbai is an exciting undertaking. The vibrant city offers everything you can imagine and more, making it a challenge to pick just five favorite ways to get well in Mumbai.
Mallakhamba. This traditional Indian sport is a combination of yoga and gymnastics performed atop a wooden pool at varying heights. With no safety net or harness securing you in, this national sport, first practiced in the 1100's, calls for more than strong abs and a fearless outlook. Shree Samartha Vyayam Mandir in Mumbai's Shivaji Park is the best place to try your hand at this contortionist sport. You'll warm up with some yoga poses before you practice shimming up the wooden pole while holding on for dear life.
Yoga. It would be a travesty to make your way to India and not take part in one of their most profound gifts to the world: Yoga. Like any major city, Mumbai has options. Want an instructor sent to your hotel room, not a problem. Looking for a boutique studio that appeals more to the expat scene - head to the neighborhood of Bandra. If you'd rather venture into the world's oldest yoga school, check out The Yoga Institute established in 1918, which offers classes, lectures and health counseling.
Sassoon Docks Fish Market. The real fish market experience begins at 5am when the boats begin docking from a night of fishing. This outdoor wet market is a frenetic scene where you need to keep your eyes open and hands pressed to your side. Men and women riding scooters, walking with baskets on their head or pushing large wooden carts whip past you in every direction as they collect their bounty. Unlike any other fish market in the world that we've seen, the auctioning is all done as the fish come off the side of the boat. A crowd gathers in a circle as the auction begins. In rapid succession prices are shouted into the crowd, cash is exchanged and the circle disbands only to form again a few feet away.
Elephanta Caves. On an island in the middle of the Arabian seas rises a large complex of ancient caves and carvings. Little is known about this UNESCO world heritage site except that it dates back to creation some time between the 5th and the 6th century. Dedicated to Lord Shiva, the Hindu god, a 23-foot carving stands out for its impressive execution. While a tourist hot spot, Pravassa can take you there in the early morning hours before the crowds arrive giving you access and the ability to sit quietly and meditate among these larger than life gods.
Mani Bhavan. Mahatma Gandhi's longing for peace and Indian Independence is world renown. In the 1920's he renounced foreign-made goods and invented a portable spinning wheel so he could live simply and make his own clothing as a form of protest towards British rule. Pictured here is Gandhi's room where he slept when living in the city. Now a museum and library, Mani Bhavan is a source of pride and education for the Indian people and should not be missed by visitors as it offers a window into this revolutionary man's life. - Linden Schaffer