It Gets Personal.
The choice to take care of myself did not come naturally. In 2005, I walked into my first private Pilates session. Although I had continued to work out regularly I had never connected emotionally with the gym, running, or other forms of exercise. After my 60-minute private Pilates session, though, I felt something I had never felt before. I did not sweat. My heart rate did not rise. Yet, I felt like I had worked out to the point of shaking. “How could this be? And what is this?” I was addicted to Pilates from that first day and I never stopped. I got my certification to teach two years after that and in the middle of our separation and eventual divorce. I could feel the pieces of my missing purpose begin to come into my awareness. It was very powerful.
It was through this practice that I realized I had been searching for happiness and approval from the outside. Finding the label “ADHD” during that moment in the child psychologist’s office with my son answered some of my questions, but still being unable to look inward, I was left with the void that kept me questioning who I was. After years of practice and acceptance, I finally feel whole. When I began the daily practice of connecting with my breath, a whole new world opened up for me. I learned to focus my mind inward, instead of always seeking comfort, joy, and peace from the external world. I discovered how important it was for me to feel those deep emotions that I had been pushing to the side simply to get me through the day. And I realized that I was strong enough to rise above the demons of my past.
I would not have found happiness had it not been for the Pilates method. This I know is true. I have since been teaching for close to a decade and there is not a session I teach where the magic of this method does not reveal itself. Over the years of observing my clients, I have compiled notes that have influenced the founding of the Conscious Strong™ Program and the 100s to HappinessTM Challenge App.
It has been an incredible journey from the original conception of the idea to where I am today. I started this section above with the quote from the Buddha because it truly encapsulates the “why” behind this retreat, which has grown out of a greater desire to spread a global message of happiness through conscious movement. Everything starts with the mind. Whether you are looking to improve the health of your body, decrease stress, or form a better relationship with your son or daughter, it all starts with the mind.
I have learned (and continue to learn) many of life’s lessons the “hard way.” And I have made it my mission to teach this method to others, so they can experience the freedom that I have found. I believe that once we recognize and acknowledge that we are powerful beyond even our wildest dreams, there is nothing that can stand in our way of finding deep self love and using it to fuel everything else in our lives.
So, without further ado, let’s get started!
Cheers to Happiness,