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The one thing you need to do to revolutionise your day

I'm self-employed so through necessity, I have to fit a lot into my daily routine. This includes time physically spent at work or teaching, time at home doing the admin side of my business - social media, accounts etc, time for myself, including working out, spending time with my friends, family and pets, and time for those boring but necessary daily chores. This does sound like I have a lot of plates spinning and in all honesty, I do, but it's just what works for me. Now, I'm not writing this post because I want to suggest I am some kind of superwoman (really, I'm far from it), but because people ask me how I manage it all and I wanted to share my secret for finding a good work/life balance... LISTS! Ok it's not that exciting or innovative but stick with me on this... I write a weekly to-do list, as I'm sure loads of you do too.  I start with the things I absolutely have to do that week. If things are time sensitive, i.e. I need to pay that invoic
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World Peace Day: accessing tranquility

On World Peace Day, I wanted to take some time out and think about what the idea of peace really means to us on a day-to-day basis. The dictionary definition of peace offers us two versions; firstly it means the freedom from disturbance or a state of tranquility; and secondly, it means a state in which war is non-existent or has ended.  It is not my area of expertise to discuss the second meaning and although I wish that version was a reality for us all, sadly at the present time it is not. Instead, I'll focus on that first definition. Freedom from disturbance - well that sounds rather lovely doesn't it?  Peace and quiet, the mental space to do what we want without being annoyed or distracted by any outside interferences.  How realistic is that really? This week, I spoke to some of my yoga students about how sometimes we have to craft that space for peace and tranquility even in the most difficult of environments.  When we are stressed or in the midst of a noisy and d

Why practice doesn't make perfect!

Growing up, we're constantly told 'practice makes perfect'.  It's a mantra that we find ourselves repeating even into adulthood; work hard at something and you'll reap the rewards. For many aspects of our lives, this may well be true.  We focus our attention on getting better, on the final outcome and the sense of fulfilment we achieve when we reach that point.  The education system in this country is one that constantly measures and tracks improvement, turning young people into a piece of data rather than recognising them as the wonderful individuals they are (ok, as an ex-teacher don't get me started on that - I could rant for hours...). When it comes to yoga however, it doesn't matter how much you practise, I'm afraid you'll never 'complete' yoga or become 'yoga perfect'.  Why? Because yoga isn't about the destination. Sorry folks, but as cliched as it may sound, it's about the journey! Ok, thats probably simulata

The Power of Pets

I am quite aware that people secretly think I'm a 'crazy guinea pig/rabbit lady' and if there's any bunny or piggy memes on Facebook or Instagram, I know who's going to get tagged in them!  Like many of you out there, my pets are family to me. Ever since I was tiny, there's always been a pet of some kind on the house - guinea pigs, rabbits, cats, dogs, hamsters, chicken, ducks, fish - even had a pony as a kid but obviously, that didn't live in the house!  Before you think it, no I haven't/don't live on a farm either! Aside from all the wonderful aspects of their personalities and the hilarious things they do, my pets are a way of helping manage my mental health.  Knowing that there is a small creature that is completely reliant upon you to get up every day and ensure its basic needs are met, is a great way to keep yourself motivated and on track.  The companionship and unconditional love you get from a pet is also invaluable; they don't c

Ahimsa: why it's cool to be kind (to yourself)

Last night, I addressed the theme of  ' ahimsa ' in my yoga class. Ahimsa is derived from Sanskrit and essentially means "not to injure" and to behave with "compassion".  Whilst most of us (me included) are very good at being compassionate to others, we often fail to accord ourselves with that same level of compassion and love (again, me included). I had a very frank conversation with someone this week about their perception of me and how it differs from my own.  I feel that I am a very independent person - self-reliant, resourceful etc. - but they said that whilst that is the case, there is also a side of me that does tend to ignore or discredit my need to be nurtured.  It wasn't the easiest conversation I've ever had but it was certainly one that I am finally ready to hear and to accept. Acting in accordance to the principle of ahimsa means allowing compassion and nurturing into all areas of our lives. It could mean living in a way that is

Getting my running mojo back

It's been quite a while since I posted about running and in all honesty, I think it's because I didn't have any races in the pipeline so I was feeling like I'd lost my running mojo. I was still running but instead of going out 3 or 4 times a week and following a strict plan, I was just running as and when I felt like it.  I have to say, I am definitely one of those people who needs a goal or something to focus on.  I really like have a training plan as it means that I can quite literally tick off my training and get a sense of accomplishment from that...I do love a list! After all the marathon training, I was genuinely worried that I might lose my love for running.  I had heard horror stories of other marathoners who, after accomplishing the marathon, just completely fell out of love with running and stopped completely. I went out on the Sunday after the marathon to run the 3.7 miles for Matt Campbell, the man who sadly died in this year's London Marathon.

Why you don't need to be an athlete to benefit from sports massage…

Before you skip past this post because you don't go to the gym or do any form of fitness training, ask yourself these questions: Do you spend around 8 hours of your day sitting at a desk or driving? Are you required to perform repetitive movements as part of your job? Does your body feel achey most of the time but you've come to regard that as ‘normal’? If youcan answer ‘yes’ to even one of those questions, there's a very strong likelihood that you will benefit from a regular sports massage. Modern life is becoming increasingly more sedentary, with many people working in desk-orientated roles for up to 8 hours a day.  When you combine this with long commutes driving, and recreational time spent bent over mobile phones, games consoles or books, our bodies are coming under increasing stress and strain, without even factoring in any exercise.  One of the most common issues I see - and I mean on a weekly basis - is people suffering from knotty shoul