How to Prepare for Detoxing

The cusp between winter and spring is the ideal time to do an internal cleansing program to allow your body to release toxins that may have built up over winter. If the body gets purified, the rejuvenation process can start and your body can gain strength and immunity. If you're sharing with us a Thoughtless Weekend of Cleansing and Purification, you might want to follow a few simple steps to get the most out of it. In order to prepare the body tissues for cleanse and release of toxins, try to eliminate a week before our weekend all processed foods, packaged, canned and frozen foods, sweets, alcohol and coffee and heavy dairy products such as aged cheeses, yoghurt, foods that are deep fried, raw foods and heavy desserts. Avoid breads and crackers as well as fermented foods like pickles. Modify your diet to predominantly eat vegetables and whole grains, that are light, warm, cooked and easy to digest. That creates a more alkaline environment within the body which supports the cleansing and detoxifying process.

Certain fruits, spices and vegetables are especially helpful during the cleansing process. Cooked prunes and figs for breakfast along with stewed apple or pear. Most sweet juicy fruits are excellent cleaners. Eat a lot of cooked leafy greens and light nutritious whole grains such as quinoa, barley, amaranth, and rice. Detox spices include ginger, turmeric, coriander, fennel and fenugreek seeds opening up channels of the body and support the flushing of toxins through the skin, urinary tract, colon and liver. Drink plenty of hot water and herbal teas throughout the day. 

During the preparation phase your focus might shift to your internal condition. Letting go of day to day inhibiting patterns, spending time meditating, taking walks in nature. Deep breathing focused on prolonged exhalations to rid the body of old ideas, emotions and blockages are all wonderful ways to connect to your true self. 

Daily routines are important to establish a life in harmony with your surroundings following the rhythm of life. In our time together we will learn cleansing techniques for body and mind at different times of the day, yoga poses promoting waste elimination and a positive mental outlook and healing techniques through our 5 senses, so you can take home a practical understanding of what you need to increase vitality and get a fresh start into spring.

On Ayurveda

Ayurveda -the holistic science of life- is based on the principles of 3 doshas, the energies that make up every individual. Vata, Pitta and Kapha. As the season changes and fall arrives Vata increases and might cause instability, and sensitivity. Keeping your Vata Dosha in check is key to staying healthy through fall and winter.  

Vata has many positive aspects. The combination of air and space is mobile, creative, light, airy, great for communication between people as well as the communication with the internal environment inside our body. Vata is what makes our systems move and flow. When Vata increases excessively, it dries out our tissues. It creates wind in our bowels and might cause constipation. There may be a lack of appetite, either from the digestive upset or because the creative mind has become too anxious and worried to eat. People with deranged Vata can feel unstable, unbalanced, and ungrounded. People with deranged Vata are the daydreamers who cannot connect to daily life with the people and environment they live in. They become flighty and changeable, maybe unable to sleep.

Although some people have more Vata Dosha, air, and wind in their constitution, we are all susceptible to an increase of Vata in fall. 

We cannot change our external environments, but we can balance our internal environment through our daily routines, diet, and herbs.

Vata is dry, light, irregular, rough, mobile, cold, quick, and changeable. To reduce Vata, we reduce those qualities in our daily lives and routines. We can also start to complement with opposites to calm any excess.

How to balance Varta will be all part of our learning at our Thoughtless Retreat end of October. Meanwhile enjoy the change of the season. It's leading you to a new beginning.

Emptying Your Cup

Lately I get to talk a lot about my favorite subject at the moment, our upcoming Thoughtless Retreat. And people asked why do we talk about thoughtless in a world where everybody is concerned about being mindful? There's a famous Zen story, I'd like to tell, which explains it beautifully.

A zen master received a visit of a student. He poured his visitor’s cup full, and then kept on pouring. The student watched the overflow until he no longer could restrain himself.

“It is overfull. No more will go in!”

“Like this cup,” the master said, “you are full of your own opinions and speculations. How can I show you Zen unless you first empty your cup?”

And that's what we hope to experience at our retreat. Only when we empty our mind, fresh, creative thinking can happen. All our wonderful collaborators bring their own tool box to help us loose our mind - yoga will be one of many offerings to help us learn to create a Thoughtless Space for ourselves.

The goal of yoga is to stop the fluctuations of the mind and I'm so excited to share this experience with you.

Dreamy Retreat Ideas

Susanne and I met up yesterday to brainstorm the upcoming retreat. Ever since we've connected there has been a lovely synergy around what we both want to create for our guests and the enthusiasm around this visit was no different.

Some ideas that were floated about the upcoming retreat include:

  • Fresh, farm to table, ayruvedic meals and snacks, including a fabulous sit-down dinner on Saturday night.
  • Nights by the fires, both inside and out
  • "Beer and Snacks" coaching sessions and "Wine and Dark Chocolate" after hours chats.
  • Homemade chai tea and hot coffee in the mornings on the porch
  • Massage and reiki sessions throughout the weekend

We've only just begun creating the itinerary for this weekend but there's a deep commitment to crafting THE most wonderful weekend for our guest. Do you have ideas? Are there things YOU could imagine in a Thoughtless Weekend that you'd love to see on the program? 

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