If you had to pinpoint one thing that always helps you accomplish your goals, what would you say? It’s the same thing that helps you complete everyday tasks like getting groceries, driving home and posting something on social media. It’s the same thing that teaches you how to listen to the needs of your heart. It’s the same thing that transforms a person doing yoga poses into someone who practices yoga.
What do you give repeatedly, day in and day out, that can both completely exhaust you and completely replenish you?
The answer to both of these questions is: attention. Attention is our greatest resource. It is not expensive, but it can cost you everything! It can be broken, fragmented, drained and stolen. It can also be cultivated, fortified and harnessed. Attention can be channeled. And the ability to channel a concentrated amount of attention in one direction, onto one thing, is what creates transformation.
There is an ancient intelligence alive in each of us. It breathes, it learns, it adapts and it allies with us in every moment to ensure that we are taken care of. It is faceless, genderless, ageless. It collaborates with our five senses. It remembers everything, even when our mind forgets. It is this inner healing intelligence that draws us to our spiritual mentors, to the kindred spirits we call friends and family, and to those difficult gifts that teach us the great lessons of our lives. Sometimes it forces our attention through pain and upset. Sometimes it dawns on us as synchronicity, perfect timing or total coincidence. Accessing the inner healer isn’t difficult, but it can feel that way when we’re not in the right environment to hear it and receive its offerings of mental clarity and peace.
Even against our best intentions, we can become masters of ignoring our inner healing intelligence. We can find ourselves stuck in a habit of distraction and constant multi-tasking.
Taking retreat from what we’re used to is a strategic way to disrupt our comfort zone, so that we can tap back into the wellspring of health within us. For five nourishing nights and six immersive days under the Tuscan sun this summer, we are going to unplug from work. We’re unplugging from our hometown, our TV shows, our timezones. And we’re getting a little uncomfortable (in a really good way). Interrupting our everyday way disrupts the desensitized, overstimulated Self and reawakens the spiritually conscious, alert and curious Self. The self that heals is also the self that breathes deeply. The self that moves intentionally is the same self that is open to foreign experiences. Taking time away from our normal routine gives us the chance to experience life more mindfully - even if you don’t have any formal training in mindfulness or yoga. I will take you in to this frame of mind and keep you in it for a full week at Sant’engle in Tuscany, Italy.
This is the break you need from everything you’re used to, everything you’re bored by, everything you’re tired of, and everything you want to appreciate from afar.
Everyday we will have two formal yoga practices, curated with a theme that we’ll embody during our excursions. We’ll have free time to relax or explore the local village, and organic meals with ingredients from the farm on our retreat property. We’ll remember how to take our yoga practice off the mat and into our lives. I will teach you specific techniques for increasing your ability to focus and discipline your mind while nourishing your senses in only the way that Italy can.
You will experience:
Yoga Nidra, the meditative science of increasing spiritual consciousness and supplementing sleep deprivation
Breathwork to gradually increase attention span, endurance and healing properties within the nervous system.
Enough time and space to really hear yourself, and feel yourself. This kind of spiritual hearing is how we access the inner healing intelligence.
For a small dose of what it will feel like, take six deep breaths, inhaling for six counts, exhaling for eight slow counts.
More to come, in Italia! Join Niki June 15th to 20th in the stunning Tuscan countryside to access your inner healer and transform your life.