We’ve been hearing so much about mindfulness and meditation in recent years and there is something wonderfully attractive about taking time for ourselves, living in the moment and focusing on the now.
It all sounds fabulously Zen, but how to actually make it part of our very busy lives? I’ve vowed to delve a little deeper - and to ease myself in gently, I took a Love Yourself Yoga and Meditation workshop in the Elbowroom in Smithfield.
The Elbowroom aims to heal, restore and achieve optimum health, with their team believing that everyone deserves effective and affordable healthcare for the body and the mind. They offer a huge selection of classes and workshops that are reasonably priced.
My sister and I were so eager that we arrived early, yoga mats in hand – so we popped into the café, Graze, for some caffeine to get us going. Then it was on to the studio to meet our lovely instructor, Sophia Pallaro.
We got organised by putting our yoga mats in place and gathering together some blankets, cushions and yoga bricks provided by the Elbowroom. Sophia began the workshop by encouraging us to show love and acceptance towards ourselves – the next 3 hours would be dedicated to cultivating some healthy and healing self-attention. This might all sound a bit cringe but if we stop and think about it, it’s the minimum we all deserve.
So we began by breathing naturally and calmly, which is known as reclining meditation and brought us into a lovely relaxed state in which to try out some gentle yoga poses. Thankfully they were easy to do, even for someone like me who is stiff as a plank. Sophia brought us through a guided meditation where we focused on self—compassion and love, with the mantra:
• May I love myself
• May I feel safe
• May I accept myself
• May I be kind to myself
I have to say, I loved it. By the end of the workshop, my sister and I felt completely relaxed and at peace, not to mention emotionally and physically stronger. It really was the perfect workout for the body, mind and soul. We headed home to our parents’ house for dinner, and within 5 minutes we had everyone chanting our new sayings around the kitchen table. The day definitely made an impact and was the perfect first step on my journey to a more mindful me!
The Love Yourself Yoga and Meditation Workshops at the Elbowroom are €22 per person for a two and a half hour session. Check out the website for dates and details.