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Welcome Jelisa + Upcoming!

I am honored to welcome Jelisa Difo, E-RYT and Reiki Healer, to the team as Vice President for Wellness Initiatives, based in SWFL. Jelisa brings a wealth of experience in community organizing and individual healing, with an emphasis on Trauma Informed methodology. Many dreams and schemes are being birthed through our collaboration.

Hello All,

I hope this finds you well and you’re preparing for a joyful, relaxing holiday break.

You will notice changes in the coming weeks and months as In Yoga Coaching + Consulting broadens its reach.

First off, I am honored to welcome Jelisa Difo, E-RYT and Reiki Healer, to the team as Vice President for Wellness Initiatives, based in SWFL. Jelisa brings a wealth of experience in community organizing and individual healing, with an emphasis on Trauma Informed methodology. Many dreams and schemes are being birthed through our collaboration. I am truly grateful to have Jelisa on board.
(Learn more about Jelisa, bio below.)

Jelisa Difo headshot.jpgJelisa Difo, In Yoga Consulting’s VP of Wellness Initiatives

Jelisa and I were thrilled to welcome our newest client, Re3 Healing Neuro Institute based in Sarasota, FL, in October 2019. As In Yoga Consulting, we have developed and are implementing a clinical therapeutic wellness program including Chair Yoga, Mindfulness Meditation, Integrative Health courses, and weekly private sessions.

Shout out to our skilled instructors (including several NPYW 200 hour training graduates): Pallavi Lowery, Carl Eisen, Lynne Zahumeny, Jelisa Difo and Chris Palladino. We look forward to all that 2020 has in store!

I have several upcoming events to share, including an online option!

With even more offerings – including trainings and retreats – to come in the new year. Stay tuned…

 


 

January 6, 2020 (Online Series Begins)

I will be serving as Teacher Assistant (TA) for Dr. Christopher Key Chapple’s online Yoga Philosophy course through Loyola Marymount University’s Extension Yoga Studies.
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Kick off the new year with self-discovery through an immersion in traditional Yogic texts.

Samkhya Karika (1/06 – 2/07)

Yoga Sutras of Patanjali (1/06 – 3/13)
Registration is now open!
For registration questions, please contact: extension@lmu.edu

January 31st, 2020 (All Day)

I am honored to serve as Keynote Presenter for the Kids Thrive Conference hosted by Drug Free Charlotte County. I will be presenting on the science and methodology of childhood trauma and trauma informed mindfulness practices, primarily based on the research of Bessel von Der Kolk, M.D. in “The Body Keeps the Score.”

March 7 + 8, 2020 (9am – 6pm, daily)

Join me at the studio, North Port Yoga + Wellness, for an intensive weekend immersion in Trauma Conscious Yoga, also referred to as Trauma Informed Mindfulness. Details and registration information below.

Pre-register: $199 / Drop In: $249

Pre-register at www.northportyoga.org,
email info@northportyoga.org
or call: 941.423.5409

Questions? Give me a shout at: amy@ayearinyoga.com


Trauma Conscious Weekend Training
March 7 + 8, 2020 at North Port Yoga + Wellness, FL

What is Trauma Conscious Yoga, also referred to as Trauma Informed Mindfulness?

Did you know that stress is stored in the body, within our muscles, fascia and nervous system? The many health benefits of yoga practice derive from the body’s capacity to release stored stress or trauma through asana (physical postures), pranayama (breathwork) and meditation. In this training, you will learn the “how” and “why” of stress stored in the body, practices to release or “self-regulate,” as well as techniques to promote wellness in your everyday life.

Topics covered include:

  • Overview of Subtle Body Anatomy
  • Western Physiology + Neurological Overview
    (Changing Your Narrative: The Science of Positive Thinking)
  • Yoga for Mental Health
  • Demographic Specific Techniques (including Veterans, Substance Abuse, Victims of Sexual Abuse, Homeless, Juvenile/Kid’s Yoga, Prison + Refugee Populations)
  • Community Outreach Preparation
  • Self Identity Reflection
  • Trauma Conscious Yoga Methodology + Practice

Open and applicable to yoga students and teachers, caregivers, counselors, health professionals and all.

16 Continuing Education Hours available for Yoga Alliance members.

Trauma Informed Info sheet NPYW March 2020



Jelisa Difo, E-RYT, Reiki Healer

Vice President for Wellness Initiatives 

Jelisa Difo headshot.jpg

With a background in education and public service, Jelisa’s various roles are aimed at helping humanity grow. She has worked in the non-profit sector as a community organizer and event planner, and most recently as an international wellness retreat coordinator. While serving as Community Liaison in Springfield, MA and for the Board of Education in NYC, Jelisa gained experience working with diverse demographics to reach a common goal.

In 2015, Jelisa’s life took a turn for the best. It was in St. Thomas where she found her first yoga teacher and embarked on a journey of transformation. After completing her 200-hour teacher training and four years of traveling the world, she learned that yoga and meditation are best when integrated into daily life, off the mat or cushion. Whether she is practicing daily meditation, yoga, Reiki or leading a retreat, Jelisa leads with curiosity and an open heart.

 

Welcome Re3 Healing!

A special welcome + thanks to
In Yoga Consulting’s newest client!

A special welcome + thanks to

In Yoga Consulting’s newest client:

 

re3 logo high res

In Yoga Consulting is excited and honored to assist Re3 Healing Aesthetics and Wellness in the development of its new wellness center, including contractor recruitment, training, management and scheduling.

Re3 Healing Aesthetics and Wellness’ mission statement parallels our own, to “to improve wellness both inside and out.” In partnership, we aim to offer a wide variety of holistic practices to help nourish the mind, body, and soul to improve the quality of life of Re3’s clients. We acknowledge that each patient is different and requires a thoughtful and dedicated approach to healing.

Re3 and In Yoga’s comprehensive Wellness Program “leads with the leak,” addressing dis-ease as its source. By educating clients on the science and physiology of the body and promoting techniques for self-regulation, In Yoga instructors provide the ‘missing link’ in holistic wellness through a mentally and physically embodied approach.

Following recent discussions on Re3 Healing’s needs related to Wellness Center development, we have agreed to focus on the following areas:

  • Integrative Health Open House
    • Once monthly overview of diverse wellness services and physiological benefits
  • Integrative Health Introductory Series
    • Align schedule with existing 360° 12 week series
  • Wellness Classes + Tiered Memberships
  • 200 Hour Teacher Training Course
    • Facilitate quality therapeutic training of 360° instructors in Sarasota/Venice
    • Summer 2020
  • Therapeutic Private Sessions
  • Yoga Therapy 2021
  • Retreat Options

We look forward to all still to unfold as we kick of the new year with this new opportunity and the same goal: to provide alternative methods of healing to all.

Stay tuned as we expand our offerings at Re3 Healing and throughout the community in Sarasota, FL, Los Angeles, CA and beyond!

 

Love + Light,

Amy and Jelisa

Online Self Care Series

Holiday Self Care Series
Holiday Self Care Series

 

Start off the Season with Self Care

Join me in for my first ONLINE course: Holiday Self Care Series 

$49 for 5 weeks of classes you can reference each and every holiday season, or throughout the year!

**On your own time, in your own home**

What You Need to Know:

Videos will be released each Monday from November 26 to December 24th. You are able to download and save the videos to your computer for future viewing. Each video will be 45-60 minutes in length and include a minimum of 15 minutes of guided movement, breathwork and/or meditation.

Topics covered in this series will include:

– Week 1: Intro to Yoga for Self Care (Asana + Pranayama)
– Week 2: The Practice of Contentment
– Week 3: Loving Kindness + Mindfulness Meditation
– Week 4: Healthy Boundaries for Happiness
– Week 5: Off the Mat: Yoga for the Present

_____________________________________________

To Register:
1) Click the link below and pay $49 registration (<$10/class!)

www.paypal.me/amyinyoga

2) Wait to receive follow-up e-mail confirming your registration.

Didn’t receive an e-mail?
Reach out to me directly at
amy@ayearinyoga.com with any questions.

3) Optional: Join Secret Facebook Group for practitioners or receive e-mail links to download weekly videos

_____________________________________________

Not sure you’re ready to make the plunge? Contact info@ayearinyoga.com with questions or to learn more about upcoming class offerings!

Ready to Save Your Spot?

Get started by making payment to: www.paypal.me/amyinyoga

NEW! Yoga + Meditation Back to School

Hello All! (particularly SWFL friends)

Exciting News: Yoga and Meditation are going to back to school!

Fall 2018 STC schedule graphic.png

Join me for one or several five week courses in Yoga and/or Meditation at Suncoast Technical College in North Port OR Sarasota, FL to being Oct. 1st!

All courses are $49 for five weeks / classes.

Limited space and time to register!

Registration available here:

941-361-6590

or

https://sarasotacountyschools.net/schools/ace/

See “Course Catalog”

Located outside of SWFL and looking for a chance to dive deeper? Hang tight!

Online courses and additional trainings to come in 2019

Santosha: A Shared Search for Contentment

I thought, as I had always been told, that success would bring happiness. I thought money and power were the benchmarks of success. Of course, I thought wrong…

Contentment doesn’t come easy. Or, at least not without practice.

As we collectively process the loss of Kate Spade, Anthony Bourdain and countless others who threw it all away while seemingly having it all, I’m grateful for honest conversation with friends and clients around what it means to be happy. What is it we’re all aiming for if traveling the world, having more money then we can spend, and living a glamorous lifestyle is not enough?

In yoga, the word “santosha” is one of the Niyamas, the second of eight limbs of Yoga. Santosha means contentment. To me, contentment represents the ultimate end goal: Happiness.

My journey toward contentment

I’ve always known exactly what I wanted. The perfect internship, university, boyfriend and new city served as guideposts on my journey through life. My direction was solidified by my pursuit of the American Dream: success, money, power. And, I almost always got what I wanted. 

That is, until I didn’t. Until I finally “had it all” and realized I had nothing. In fact, I was far from it.

In Yoga, this is the moment of “removing the veil [of ignorance].” Like Pandora’s box, once you peak inside, there’s no going back. In this way, you may have heard people say – myself among them – that yoga “changed my life forever.” But how? And in what way?

When I moved from Boston to Los Angeles in 2013, I was an idealist 23-year-old, newly appointed as Chief of Staff to a Senior Vice President of a major insurance company. I was sure I could handle it. I was smart and confident with a New England work ethic. I settled into my Santa Monica apartment and made friends with ease. I was set. I was on my way.

I thought, as I had always been told, that success would bring happiness. I thought money and power were the benchmarks of success. Of course, I thought wrong.

When I found my dream job to be less-than-fulfilling, the same idealism that led me to leave a great job and friends in Boston once again took over. Gratefully, my parents were in full support. My Mom and I nodded in emotional and spiritual agreement: I had to follow my intuition. Where would I land if I let my heart lead the way? I wasn’t sure. But, feeling let down by my former pursuit for success, I knew this is where I was headed.

I thought, as I had always been told, that success would bring happiness. I thought money and power were the benchmarks of success. Of course, I thought wrong.

After six years of daily yoga practice, I was passionately attuned to the mental and physical benefits of yoga study and practice. I wanted to learn and embody more. This was my heart’s true desire. Peace. Self-love. Contentment.

Yoga changed my life by allowing me to be in control of the trajectory and well-being of my body and mind: mitigating anxiety, managing depression, eliminating food and diet obsession, ultimately caring for myself in body, mind and spirit.

Today, I spend my time creating, managing and instructing teacher trainings, yoga classes and community events to spread the word about yoga as a valuable practice both on and off the mat. This includes working with private clients to develop a daily practice to suit their individual needs, as well as working with Veterans, recovering addicts, social workers, nurses, and others.

At times I still struggle to stay above the current. Sometimes, life seems to win as I flounder with chronic fatigue, chronic pain, restlessness, anxiety, depression and stress. The difference now, is I have tools to re-engage and reset. Through Yoga, I’ve unlocked the code of how to stay above water.

Here’s what I learned:

Contentment is more complex than sitting on the couch on a Sunday, grateful for no place to be. (Although these moments are precious too!) Contentment means seeing the good in the bad. Seeing the truth in the chaos, and the light in the dark. Contentment is knowing impermanence as the only consistent theme of life and embracing each moment as if it were the only one. This is a practice. We are lucky in life if we experience moments of Santosha.

Nothing outside ourselves can give us contentment; not money, power or fame. Only we can find contentment through a commitment to being open, to seeing opportunity and to Loving ourselves and others unconditionally.

As we collectively process unfathomable loss and confusion, I feel inclined to share the wisdom I’ve gleaned from five years of yoga study. Here it is:

1) Go easy on yourself and on others. Rather than getting frustrated, take a breath and have a conversation. 90% of the time you’ll be surprised with the outcome, if you can keep your cool. Difference disappears when one person has the courage to find commonality. The rest of the time, you’ll rest easy knowing you tried your best by keeping an open mind and heart. This is truly peace of mind.

2) Love unconditionally. Not just your family and friends, but also yourself. Don’t only give love to those who are like minded but also to those who you struggle to understand. Imagine you met someone at your favorite store or place of work, your instinct might be to connect. That’s the basis of humanity, to save ourselves but also to keep one another alive. The world and all that’s difficult depends on our individual ability to be the bigger person. This means to Love freely. If that feels uncomfortable, sit with why that might be. We’ll all be better off if we can learn to Love indiscriminately. And yes, that means even yourself on your roughest day. Let that shit go.

Nothing outside ourselves can give us contentment; not money, power or fame. Only we can find contentment through a commitment to being open, to seeing opportunity and to Loving ourselves and others unconditionally.

Santosha may be closer than we think. A professor in Yoga once described the practice of Santosha as simply making the time to “sit outside and watch the wind blow through the trees.” Dismiss it as fluff and nonsense if you like, but when was the last time you did this? If you can’t remember, humor me and try. Then notice afterwards, how do you feel? (Curious about the physiological response of this practice and why it works? Message me or check out my short book on the Science and Practice of Mindfulness.)

The answers to life’s biggest problems are simple, if we take the time to listen. We are all connected. Solace comes from one another, from Nature, and from ourselves. If only we are quiet enough to hear. And, if we allow Love to win.

No matter your path, happiness is possible. Rich or poor. Homeless or privileged. Be with it. This moment is beautiful. Don’t miss it.

Seeing the opportunity in challenge, the light in the dark…This is the practice of contentment.

xx

In Yoga,

Amy

Now Accepting Remote Clients!

In yoga black and white

Now Accepting Remote Clients!

Enjoy private customized yoga practice at home, on your own schedule.


Check out “First Dibs” deal below!
First 3 New Clients for A Year in Yoga private instruction save $1,000!

Give the Gift of Wellness for Mother’s Day!

Schedule private session here or e-mail: info@ayearinyoga.com

“First Dibs” A Year in Yoga Deposit

$250 deposit, refundable within 10 days minus 25% processing and administrative fee. Client will be contacted for confirmation and payment plan information within 3-4 days of initial deposit. A Year in Yoga Includes: 6 week Foundations Video Series Download (2 hours each) Bi Weekly On-site, Phone or Video Check-In’s Custom Practice or “Sadhana” Custom regular practice designed to meet your specific needs Journal Entries to monitor and measure progress Video Feedback (up to 12 videos) adjust and modify your practice as things arise in your life First 3 Clients (First Dibs): $1,999 / year Then: $2,999 6 months In Yoga: $1,499 / 6 months *Flexible payment plans available

$250.00

 

individual options 2018 1individual options 2018 2
Trouble reading the PDF? View here.

 



Get Away Weekend, In Mindfulness

Mindful Moments Retreat June 2018

Continue reading “Now Accepting Remote Clients!”

Mindful Moments On + Off the Mat

I am excited to announce my first “retreat” to be held at North Port Yoga + Wellness with friend and colleague, Gisela Bouvier, RDN, founder of Mindfully Intuitive Nutrition.

Join us for a memorable weekend immersion in yoga, mindfulness and nutrition. Find food freedom and learn to practice yoga on and off the mat. Discover peace of mind in all aspects of life.

Questions? Shoot me an email at amy@northportyoga.org

We hope to see you then!

Mindful Moments Retreat June 2018

The Still Life.

After my second “vacation” home (to Los Angeles in April, and Connecticut last weekend), I’m surprised to find a palpable landing back home in Florida. My travels around the country to see loved ones, friends and family, and to frequent my old stomping grounds, came with all the usual emotional turbulence one would expect. Happy and those less-than-happy memories surfaced, and the intangibility of home (“Stop this Train!”) reminded me of the inevitably of aging, impermanence and my own growth.

I found myself in an odd predicament, as I prepared for my high school reunion. (Yes, I planned it. Yes, I was class president. But no, I am not any longer! I’ve retired.) The familiar stress of event planning and on-site logistics, paired with a few unfortunate hiccups in the long days that preceded the event reminded me of my high school self: Eager to please, relentlessly offering my energy to others yet so drained as a result that I miss much of the experience myself. This is my pattern. I miss quality conversations with old friends and I might be seen (I’ve been told) as self-centered for my “lack of caring about others” when the time for chatting came. Instead, I hover close to the bar overwhelmed, jittery and foggy-feeling. The show must go on.

We like to paint pictures of what something “should” or “would” be like. I had one for this milestone event and I know others did too. But ultimately, my proudest memory was right before I left the house. I had answered all the questions, called all the vendors, secured the decorations, arranged the guest list, collected, deposited, and disbursed funds, and on. The only thing left to do before I left the house was be still. I looked in the mirror, one last make-up check, and was surprised by a tsunami-like welling up of pride.

Though I might still fall into old patterns from time to time, I am aware of them. And awareness gives me choice. I found myself proud, not of who I am on paper – business owner, Masters degree holder, international traveler, author – in fact, speaking to these “titles” like accusations actually triggers some nerves. These are roles that I play, that I am honored to hold. They do not define me. I am not that.

As I looked in the mirror, I felt a startling ease and affection for the person staring back. I trust her. I’m inspired by her strength. Her ruthlessness. Her endurance. I admire that in the hardest, darkest times she continued to extend her arms, heart and mind to others. (Even though she should have been home prioritizing self-care.) When there was nothing left to give, she gave whatever she had left. She knows who she is unapologetically. And in recognizing there are many things she doesn’t know, she moves through life differently than before. Her ego, and eyes have softened.

I went forward to the reunion and enjoyed the following day with extended family, feeling immersed in a sense of (relative) calm and all-encompassing love.

Of all the changes I’ve made in the past ten years – the cross-country moves, the ass kicking’s and getting my ass kicked – there are a few lessons I feel have changed me the most:

I now know that the purpose of life is to love. That being still is not a sin. That finding stillness is not shameful. That being “productive” is not required to “succeed.” I’ve softened.

My gaze is no longer dominated by a sense of fear, confusion or disillusion, but is held with compassion, understanding, and tenderness. My heart affirms my own personal mantra and place in the world (which coincidentally, is likely yours too):

I will accept you no matter what. I will love you no matter what. I will be the best I can be, and accept my imperfections. I will set boundaries to protect myself from those who might misuse or abuse my energy. I will be present when and as often as I can, and permit myself to retreat into solitude as needed to recharge and re-energize. I will surround myself with people who support me and my goals without judgment, and allow for them to change and evolve with time.

I will love as often and as much as I can bear. I will understand when love cannot be returned and hold space for forgiveness, healing and growth. Even after being hurt, I will continue to love. Fulfillment is love. Look no further than those closest to you. They and you are all you need.

I’ve come to see that finding stillness is both the means and the end. A still life in the present moment is a happy life. I intend to spend the rest of mine pursuing exactly that.

Stop looking, you’ve already found it. The still life.

My heart whispers: Rest easy, you are perfect. And I think that one’s for you.
All bound up in love, devotedly yours,

Amy

 

Guest Post: Meditation and the joy in every moment

Ben began his practice in 2003, Since studying at his local physiotherapy clinic, Ben has expanded his scope to include yoga acupressure, acupuncture, naturopathic medicine and applied kinesiology.

Meditation and the joy in every moment
By: Ben Rogers, Edited by: Amy Osborne

Meditation has been described as “no mind” or “not thinking.” It is a stilling of the mind for a sustained period of time.

Mastering meditation can sometimes feel like coming home. You feel as if you have simple rediscovered something that has always been there. The door into tranquility that you know has already been within you is now opened.

For example, if you work in an office, are a musician, painter or another creative field, you likely know that in the midst of creation you are not thinking – but the work is simply flowing through you. Allowing this to happen is quite a challenge, which is why meditating and sitting down before work can be very helpful.

Your mind does not like to be switched off, it will constantly interrupt your meditation, demanding your attention.

Somewhere within each of our minds there is a sanctuary away from the noise and disruption of our own busy thought process. Meditation is about calming that chatter of your mind and rediscovering the calm and still space within yourself.



Breathing and meditation

Don’t forget to breath, that sounds very obvious, but it is a natural instinct for some people to hold their breath when concentrating. Don’t gasp for air, as you get into your meditation your breathing should become more gentle and rhythmic.

Posture for meditations

First imagine the top of your head is being pulled towards the top of the ceiling by an invisible string, so it feels as if your head is floating above your spine. Your chin is slightly lifted, perpendicular with the floor, to open and expand the heart and throat centers.

Relax your shoulders, drawing them back and down, and gently ease your chest (heart center) forward.

Focus and meditations

When you are ready, close your eyes and focus on your breathing, as it comes in and out through each nostril; this is one possible point of focus. This is where your attention can stay. Take several deep breaths and allow your diaphragm to lift, expanding the belly with each full inhalation. Three count inhalation, three count exhalation.

General tips for meditation

  • Don’t think about the past or future – you are participating in the present moment
  • Don’t strain, just breath
  • Don’t have expectations – It may be amazing or just difficult the first, third, and thirty-fifth time you meditate. The practice is simply being with any experience that might arise.
  • Don’t be disappointed – the benefits of meditation come with regular practice and persistence

Exercises for joy on the go

Whether you walking across your living room or across town, consciously slow your footsteps and pay attention to each sensation in your heel, the ball of your foot and then your toes when they make contact with the ground. (Walking Meditation) Notice how this simple practice relaxes your stride and your breath as your attention settles into the fullness of your present moment awareness as you go along with your day.

Observe your thoughts as you walk. What are you thinking about? Can you see a tree, person or car go past without internally labeling it? Practice moving though your surroundings without attaching thoughts, stories or judgments on what you see.

Exercise your heart (cardiac/circulatory system) whether it is bicycle riding, skating or dancing. Find an aerobic activity that brings you pleasure and you can joyfully commit to for half an hour or more during the day.


Wouldn’t it be nice if we could skip past the pain and fast forward to the bliss? The truth is to experience true contentment, we must be willing to feel all of our emotions, from despair to sadness. Our willingness to accept the moment, acknowledge the emotion and be willing to let that go is to find true peace.

Meditation is a tool that teaches us to meet ourselves (and others) where we are, and to be with whatever thoughts and feelings arise without attachment or judgement.

While the practice of meditation is profound, it is also quite simple to learn. There are many types of meditation, from walking meditation, contemplative writing, chanting or focusing on objects. But all forms of meditation begin with getting still and quite inside.

 

Join Amy for Meditation 101 at North Port Yoga to learn six methods of meditation to kick start your personal practice. amy@northportyoga.org / www.northportyoga.org