Posts Tagged ‘Art of Living Philippines’

5 ways to get more ‘ME’ time in 2012

In Philippine Star Column on January 12, 2012 at 4:08 pm

As 2012 rolls along a little faster than some of us would like, here are some simple steps to make the world — well, at least your inner world — slow down just a little bit.

Sun worship: You’re only as young as your spine is flexible.

1.  Do sets of sun salutations or surya namaskar. If you want the full benefits of stretching, toning, breathing and just an overall sense of well-being in approximately 10 minutes then learn the most basic of the yoga asanas, known as the sun salutation. There are different versions depending on which type of yoga you learn but they are incredible for opening up the chakras, stilling the mind and conditioning the body and spirit, not to mention if you do them often enough you get really toned arms, a stronger core and limber legs. Take some classes to get the basics and you can do this at home. Try the newly opened Core Yoga, which offers vinyasa and “hot yoga” classes to choose from. Core Yoga is at 1504 AIC Burgundy Tower, ADB Avenue, Ortigas Center, tel. 576-3756 or 576-3857.




Heavy mental. Be the master of your own mind with meditation

2. Dedicate yourself to a spiritual practice. The philosophy of sadhana or spiritual practice is essential to a life that is open to receiving all that the universe can give. To remove what the masters call a “monkey mind” is to teach it to be still, and that is achieved through regular meditation and calm, easy breathing. Whether you devote five minutes or 50 minutes, you have to commit to creating a space in your home and life to sit down and just let go of external noise and distractions. Remember you must commit, whether it’s every day, three times a week or once a week. It is the ultimate “me” time, and frankly, you are the most important person in your life. Contact organizations that teach ways to meditate such as The Art of Living Philippines, which holds workshops once or twice a month. Visit or call 0917-848-4898 or 216-6139.




Make it real. Daily affirmations to transform your life

3. Say affirmations. When you affirm yourself or a situation you are making it real to you and your life. It has been said that your brain cannot distinguish between reality and fantasy for as long as you truly believe in something. It may sound hokey at first to affirm or “convince yourself” but the more you repeat an affirmation, the more the possibility of it occurring in your life becomes a probability. Create an affirmation that is short yet detailed and one that you can repeat about 50 times a day for 30 days. As an example, if financial abundance is what you’re after you can say, “Wealth is coming to me easily and effortlessly.” Pick up I Can Do It!, an easy-to-read book by metaphysical healer and author Louise L. Hay, to get a whole bunch of affirmations to choose from that can help transform your health, love life, career and even self-esteem. It even comes with an audio CD. I Can Do It! is available via special order from National Book Store.





Choose your own adventure. Plan that great escape with a single step

4. Take a trip. Everyone needs his space, especially you, so take the time to plan the perfect getaway. It doesn’t have to be abroad but you need to leave what is familiar and even comfortable for you for a couple of days. Treat this particular activity with reverence. Go out and buy yourself a brand new suitcase or weekender in a color you love. Make an afternoon out of it. Check out Tripologie, which offers an excellent selection of travel essentials and even looks like a jazzed-up check-in counter so you really get in the mood. Once you’ve bought the bag, put it somewhere where you can see it often and start imagining where you’re going to go. As you pore over travel mags and websites, get excited, get inspired and make it something to look forward to, really look forward to. There is nothing like an adventure to bring in unexpected opportunities (and even people) into your life. Oh, and this would be a good time to make sure all your travel documents are in order! Tripologie is located at Alabang Town Center and Eastwood Citywalk 2, visit 

Feet me right. Reflexology releases toxins and stress

5. Feel a little pressure. Have a proper foot reflexology massage. Each point in the foot corresponds to a major organ in the rest of the body. This is one of the simplest ways to disconnect from the world while giving the rest of your insides some time to recuperate from what has been absorbed from the daily grind. Wherever you feel pain or discomfort at a certain pressure point, you can link that to a particular area or even symptom. Many foot reflexology fans tell tales of their digestion improving and even headaches diminishing because of regular treatments. Make an effort to pamper your feet once a week (perfect for those who are in heels all the time) because they take you everywhere you go and everywhere you’ve been. Treat yourself to the Inghma Method of Reflexology at New Spa, which comes with a head and back massage as well.

E-mail at or call 0917- 7938888 or visit

Clear your body and mind with breathing redux

In Philippine Star Column on September 30, 2011 at 10:48 am

Art of Living Teacher Denise Celdran going through some of the motions of Kriya breathing.

Inhale, exhale, inhale exhale. Breathing seems easy enough, in fact it’s probably the most essential thing that you do without even being aware that you’re doing it. The breath, that first gulp or air is an indication of life and your acceptance of it once you come into this world. So what happens as you grow older? You actually pay less and less attention to how you breathe (and sometimes what you breathe in) so that in times of stress, tension, emotional anxiety (or even excitement) you feel like the entire world has reduced you to a quivering, helpless mess. Okay, maybe a little melodramatic, but if you have ever been in a situation of heightened emotions, you probably have been this close to losing your mind or even your grip on reality, and this is primarily because you’ve actually forgotten how to breathe properly. This is the philosophy behind the practitioners of The Art of Living Foundation (AOL), a worldwide organization that promises you can achieve the life you truly desire by paying attention to how you breathe. It was that basic premise that got me to join one of their workshops recently, a three-day beginners course held after office hours at a private residence. Courses are held once a month and are normally about six days in length, but with my sked, the three-day course came as a godsend and I felt it was meant to be as my work-life balance was far from being balanced at that particular point in time. I’m not for any kind of medication and for me, most shrinks are a waste of money, so why not start with the basics and get the maximum impact of good ol’ oxygen.

Denise Celdran, founder and owner of Edgy Veggy is one of AOL’s teachers here in the Philippines and is a strong advocate of its benefits. In the last couple of years since she has practiced the breathing techniques regularly she has witnessed the stress and the often-destructive pull of worry (especially about the future) fall away. “There were many ideals and desires I would cling to before, and now, with just a breath, I detach,” she explained to me when I first asked her about the course. Timing is crucial in life and I actually learned about AOL over a year ago but despite regular invites and updates from Celdran I never got around to joining. Fast-forward to a couple of months ago when another crossroad in my personal and professional life resulted in anxiety attacks, a shorter temper and lots of blocks in my creative flow. I didn’t want to work, go out, but I forced myself to, and I was just looking for another way to find my center without having to fly off the handle to get it back. Divine timing came to my rescue, the three-day course was just around the corner and there was an opening, so I jumped in with both feet and a heart full of hope.

Proper oxidization for optimal body, mind and emotional stabiity

So what can one expect? The first lesson is not to get fixated on what you expect to happen and to just be in the present and be open to everything that is to be taught. There’s a little yoga to limber you up, which is jokingly referred to as “diesel yoga” since even the oldest participant (nearly 80 years old) is able to go through the poses, there’s meditation, there’s some sharing of insights and experiences, and a whole lot of breathing. Why is breathing so important (aside from the obvious, if you don’t breathe, you die)? Because it acts as a purifier, tranquilizer, and as an energizer. That probably didn’t make much sense, but it’s best explained that proper breathing gives you what your body needs, so if you need to detox, to relax or to get your mojo back, it all starts and ends with a breath. You go through a guided breathwork series which allows you to clear your body and mind with different inhale and exhale techniques; you’re also asked to sit in a way so that you get maximum oxidization. At the end of the first session many of the course participants already experienced a cleaning and a clearing on the physical level, a good start especially to those battling certain respiratory ailments and insomnia. I can only speak for myself so my personal experience was definitely a calming one — something I desperately needed at the time. I was also given a tool, something I could use whenever those sneaky little thoughts of doubt, worry and insecurity invaded my sanity via breathing exercises that could be done once a day, including an emergency shortcut (that could probably prevent a whole lot of road rage, since it could be done in a flash).

Others shared that with regular practice they developed glowing complexions (so yes, good breathing can make you better looking); just think of being able to achieve a deeper, more restful slumber for one. Some were able to control their appetites (kiss stress-eating goodbye) and most felt that they had reconnected with a lighter, more joyful part of themselves. Imagine all this with an inhale and exhale redux.

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For more information on Art of Living Courses call +63-917-848-4898 / 02-216-6139 or e-mail or visit 

SOUL TRAIN By Katrina A. Holigores (The Philippine Star) Updated September 30, 2011 *Photo by Odin Nicolas