Après co-founder shares her secrets to a balanced wellness routine.
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You kicked off 2019 full steam ahead! January and February were all about getting clear on your intentions and working towards your goals with unwavering ambition. Now, as we enter a new month with Mercury retrograde in our spiritual wheelhouse, you are being asked to slow down a bit and reconnect with your inner world.
Wait, did someone say slow down? You heard (or read) me right. March is your time to rest, reflect, and refresh. Just as an effective fitness regimen calls for rest days in order to gain the most from your physical workouts, so does your mind.
How can Mercury retrograde give your mental being that much-needed rest day? Mercury—the planet that rules your mind—goes into retrograde in the sign of Pisces throughout the month of March. This is when you need to take a step back in order to stay aligned with your 2019 intentions. Think of this month as your personal check-in time for your mind, body, and soul.
If you’re not sure where to start, here are some of my favorite tips and spots around Denver to help you embrace rest—and this month’s retrograde:
Yin Yoga is the complement to the traditional vinyasa style “flow” yoga we love so much. It is a more meditative approach to yoga in which you are holding restorative poses for longer periods of time to release the tension in your mind and body. Try an evening Yin Yoga class at Karma Yoga. Or if you can’t yet break away from the flow, try a Vin-Yin class at Oasis—which infuses both a vinyasa and yin style class in 60 relaxing minutes.
When your mind is overstimulated your ability to relax and stabilize your emotions does not function effectively. That can create a “flight or fight” response to even the smallest trigger. Denver traffic, maybe? In order to break this mental-emotional pattern, you must reduce the amount of stimulation around you and focus on stillness. For ultimate calm, try a float tank session at A New Spirit, where you can learn about (and experience) a revolutionary scientific approach to deep relaxation called Restricted Environmental Stimulation Technique (or R.E.S.T.). If floating isn’t your thing, try VibroAcoustic Sound Therapy (VAT) at Vive Float Studio. This innovative approach to reducing stress uses mild sound and gentle vibrations to create harmony within the mind and body so that you may ease into a deep meditative space.
Many of you are hustling these days—hustling to achieve your goals, to grow your business, expand your network, or just taking care of your daily responsibilities. But, as you know, when you hustle too much you can compromise your diet, your immune system, and your well-being. Give yourself a real rest with an acupuncture session at Harmony Healing. Acupuncture uses specific points along the meridians of your body to enhance your recuperative power and immunity, support your physical and emotional health, and improve your overall function. I use acupuncture monthly to keep my hustle in check!
...to a massage that is! The benefits of getting a massage can’t be ignored, but many of you are not getting them on the regular. Well, this is the month to treat yourself and get one (or maybe three). Take the time to truly enjoy the hands-on healing that comes with a massage. My favorites? The ah-mazing Aromatherapy Massage w/ Paavani Body Oils at White Lotus Therapeutics. Or the Balinese Massage at Botanica Wellness, which combines acupressure, skin rolling, kneading and percussion. Either way, you can’t go wrong!
Whatever modality appeals to you, do that this month. Find the time to slow down and reconnect with every element of your being, especially during Mercury retrograde. Take that much-needed break so when April comes around, you will have a renewed sense of direction and passion for your life, your goals, and yourself.
To say the last year and a half was tough would be an understatement. In fact, it will probably go down as one of the most difficult times for our modern generation. In one of the many social polls we conducted during the pandemic, some of you described this time as a sheer “dumpster fire” or “like stepping on a Lego.” And to be honest, I couldn’t agree more.
Luckily, we’ve been able to get back to some form of normalcy in our lives and wellness routines over the last several months. As vaccines became available to the public, wellness businesses welcomed fitness fanatics, haircut seekers, and massage lovers back to in-person wellness experiences. And thank goodness for that—my roots and horrible posture from working from my bed were both getting wildly out of control. This girl needed a good massage and cupping session stat.
If there’s one thing we learned from the pandemic, it’s that our wellness routines are as personal as they are important. During shelter-at-home, those routines looked a bit different. For many, it meant taking a new approach to the “typical” wellness services we count on—I’m looking at you DIY haircuts, at-home waxing sessions (ouch!), and virtual swerking classes.
Now that we can leave our humble abodes to take advantage of in-person experiences again, the word “wellness” has seemingly taken on a new meaning.
Recently, we conducted another one of our famous social polls to see what wellness means to you, our Mindbody community, now that we're slowly but surely getting back to our regularly scheduled programming. We also tapped some of our most influential Mindbody business owners about the ever-evolving wellness landscape.
Here’s what you all had to say.
According to our annual Mindbody Wellness Index, 60% of Americans say they’re more focused on their health and wellness since COVID. Consumers are now realizing they need to take greater care of themselves to optimize and preserve their health. When we asked you on Instagram how important wellness is, a whopping 98% said it was more important than ever. When it comes to how you’re practicing wellness, though, the answers were all over the board. Many of you pointed to journaling, practicing breathwork, and daily workout routines (cycling and yoga topped the list) as being the activities that help you keep your chill throughout the week.
I’m also happy to report that over 50% said you tend to feel more blessed than stressed on a daily basis—which is more than likely a big improvement. Let’s be honest, a year ago I would’ve bet a billion dollars that 99.9% of us knew no other feeling than anxiety—am I right? But even with the stress in our lives dwindling, many of you are still experiencing burnout at the end of a long work week (guilty!). But instead of succumbing to a bottle of wine for relief (please, that was so 2020), you’re unwinding by going to your favorite workout classes—with hot yoga, barre, and Pilates as your faves.
Let’s be honest, we should credit the business owners in this space for helping us reignite our spark when it comes to our wellness routines, right? Thanks to them, we’ve been inspired to prioritize the activities that help us feel our best. In turn, we thought it’d be interesting to learn what wellness means to them—and how that definition has changed over the past eighteen months.
Here’s what they had to say.
“Wellness is living in balance—mind, body, spirit. Highs and lows. It all ebbs and flows and we can navigate it a bit better when we take time to move, breath and remember who we are, and how we are connected to this big, beautiful world.” - Jess Pierno, Founder, Owner, and Chief Inspiration Officer of Yoga Heights
“Wellness is a true balancing of the mental, physical, and spiritual. It has definitely evolved over the years for me—from something that I just thought was about exercising and eating a healthy diet—to also incorporating balancing and healing internally and spiritually.” - Stefanie Patterson, Owner, Indianapolis Salt Cave and Halotherapy Center
“My sense of wellness has evolved from staying healthy and motivated, mind/body/spirit... to being more gentle with myself, less demanding. Accepting my limitations, taking time for resting, and gaining real clarity about what's important. I care less about what people think of me—difficult as a performer and as a business owner with so many demands on me—and more about getting quiet and tapping into the divine source inside of me that helps me discern my next move. In this way, I know my motives are as pure as possible and I'm not getting distracted—not that I don't make mistakes! Those are necessary, that's how we learn!” - Johanna Krynytzky, Owner, Hip Expressions Belly Dance Studio
“My studio name reminds us that we are constantly evolving. The past 18 months have certainly shown us that! Wellness to me means doing your best on any given day to make sure that you are taking care of yourself as best you can. It leads to resilience. Diet, exercise, sleep, a sense of community, and some form of faith. It all matters. Setbacks happen all the time, and every day is a chance to start again. We strive to be 'cheerleaders' for our clients when we sense that things are coming out of balance in their lives. So many have been with us for 18 years and are friends—they are our community and we all watch out for each other.” - Mo Wolfe, Owner and Founder, Evolution Pilates
I think we can all agree that there isn’t one true definition of wellness anymore. To some of us, it means getting that hot yoga sesh in daily, and to others, it means carving out time to treat ourselves to a massage or manicure. As long as you’re actively pursuing wellness—whatever that means to you—you're on the right track.
Our MO has always been about connecting the world to wellness—a term that's seen a lot of change lately. Whether you’re fully embracing the in-person experience or still delighted by the convenience of practicing at-home wellness, the Mindbody app makes it easy for you to book experiences that help you feel like YOU again.