Elevate Your Standard 


Yogi Inspired Conversations

An ongoing series of personal tips and tricks to enhance your yogi lifestyle

KeepCup

Many small acts can make a phenomenal difference. Join the movement in reducing waste and using this high quality KeepCup to enjoy your favorite coffee or tea beverage. Awakenings is making a conscious effort in practicing "responsible business" practices. Make a difference and simplify your carbon footprint today.

Sensory Deprivation

If you are somewhat familiar with the 8 limbs of yoga, the 5th limb is known as pratyahara, the withdrawal of the senses. A specific resource that you can add to your toolbox to help you get to this highly meditative state is through float tanks. They are chambers filled with epsom salt that allows you to float effortlessly causing a weightlessness sensation. The water is regulated to be the same temperature as your skin, so you should feel practically nothing. To take you further, you have the option to be in absolute darkness and in utter silence. The only sound that you should be able to hear is the your own breath.

Google "Float Tanks Near Me" to find a location near you

Essential Oil Diffusers

If you're not already familiar, essential oils are concentrated plant extracts that retain the natural smell and flavor, or "essence," of their source. They are said to provide many health benefits including combating stress and anxiety, headaches and migraines, insomnia, inflammation, and many more.


We have finally found a unique diffuser that is portable enough to not only be used on a desktop, but also can fit into a vehicle's cup holder. Many automobile diffusers that plug in to a cigarette portal get messy and don't work efficiently. MONQ's particular diffuser works anywhere and is battery operated so there are no chords to have to mess with. 

Vertellis Chapters

This particular journal puts self reflection front and center. An inspirational book to help guide your thoughts into action as it provides powerful quotes and motivational tips to not only reflect on your day but also being able to improve your life and increase your own happiness.

LifeBoard - Yoga Anywhere

If you are an existing or new yogi that is interested in developing a home practice outside of the studio and are limited to uneven surfaces such as carpet, this particular board is an absolute essential. It's a portable yoga floor that won't buckle and connects very easily. It works on just about any surface. Just connect the two pieces together, lay your mat on top and away you go with the feeling of practicing on a hardwood floor.

Decluttering - The Joy of Less

It feels better to do stuff than to have stuff. If this phrase by James Wallman resonates with you, I encourage you to keep reading this post. Many of us as consumers can feel so overwhelmed, instead of overjoyed, by all of our possessions. From a psychological standpoint, when we purchase or receive something new, the joy that we receive is for the most part short lived, and people more or less thrive when we have a network of close relations to others. How many items can you think of in your possession where buyer's remorse has kicked in? How many of our things are just lying around going unused and forgotten. How much is enough? This is a very individualistic question, but I encourage everyone to begin to take notice of your surroundings and come to the conclusion of what really makes you happy. If you can hold onto an item and feel absolutely nothing, perhaps it is time to let it go. Most of us have come to the realization that we are conditioned to be consumers, but why not break the wheel and see how this new lifestyle habit rides. If you are looking for a good guidebook, I would suggest checking out these valuable resources that I have used personally.

Yoga Mat Spray

Let's be real, many of us yogis have a very intimate bond and relationship with our mats. It is where we come to practice, be vulnerable, and surrender. But let's face it, many of us would rather not be in Down Dog inhaling harmful chemicals that may have been used to wipe down your mat after your last practice. A simple DIY recipe requires nothing more than the following:


* 16 oz spray bottle

* 1/4 cup of witch hazel

* 10 drops of tea tree essential oil

* Filtered water


Feel free to add your own essential oils for some additional aromatherapy. You can find a list of several to purchase from the link below. 

Seva - "Selfless Service"

"Seva" is a Sanskrit word meaning "selfless service" or work performed without any thought of reward or repayment. In ancient India, Seva was believed to help one's spiritual growth and at the same time contribute to the improvement of a community. This is the art of giving with no need to receive, where the act itself is a gift to everyone involved. How many of us feel we are at the point where we are or at least attempt to always come from a place of gratitude? What excuses do we make for ourselves for not giving back to those less fortunate than us? In the yogi world, we learn about the importance of self-care, but we need to consider life's delicate balance and ensure that the pendulum is swinging both ways to live a fulfilling life. Yoga with Awakenings is dedicated in practicing responsible business ethics by developing a community to give back to organizations through volunteering and service. Click the link below to join the Yoga with Awakenings Facebook Seva Movement to learn more or to see how you can get started. ​

Link for FB Seva Movement coming soon

Sacred Baths

A bath can be a meditate ritual of healing and self-care. And by turning your own bathtub into a secret oasis, you'll not only calm your body and mind, but also you'll give yourself space to set positive intentions on the days, weeks, and months ahead. If you are looking on adding to an existing bath ritual you are currently using or are looking for a way to get started with some ideas, Yoga with Awakenings recommends "The Book of Sacred Baths." This ritual guide is filled with self-love tips that will leave you feeling nourished and refreshed. Check out this book along with other tools and products that you can use to create your very own secret getaway at the link below.​

Wheatgrass

A somewhat controversial superfood that makes the list is wheatgrass. The upside is that it is packed with nutrients like Vitamins A, C, and E along with minerals like iron, magnesium and calcium. It also contains 70% chlorophyll that has been linked to easing fatigue, soothing digestion, improving sleep, supporting healthy skin, and helping your body rid itself of toxins. The downside is that it can taste just like it looks. Wheatgrass can be consumed by juicing the physical grass, pill form or powder. I have personally done all three and prefer the powder mixed with juices or smoothies to hide the taste. Wheatgrass can be found in almost any whole food stores along with organic aisles in large grocery store chains.

Oru Kayak

Give yourself or someone the gift of adventure. The OruKayak was featured on SharkTank back in 2014. It is known for being the kayak that transforms from box to boat in just minutes. The creators wanted to develop a boat that was easy to store and transport. I love their story and I own one of these personally so that is a key reason why the OruKayak has made the cut on the Chats off the Mat blog. These origami boats are made with a custom-extruded polypropylene, can withstand 20,000 folds and the set up is super simple. No need to have a truck or a trailer as these watertight boats can fit into most trunks or back seats of vehicles. When you are finished, you can stash it pretty much anywhere: your trunk, closet, boat, garage, van and even under your bed. Any additional accessories that you add can easily fit inside (including the paddle) making this one of the most convenient kayaks out there. Check out the links below for their site and their documentary to learn more. Hope to see you on the water.

Bone Broth

Studies that have been conducted on bone broth have found that it can improve your health in a myriad of ways. In this example we'll take on the findings of internationally renowned self-help pioneer Louise Hay and "21st-century medicine woman" Heather Dane to help bring some of its benefits to light. So many benefits have been unsurfaced ranging from the following:


* Boosts your immunity

* Alleviates the common cold and bronchitis

* Fights inflammation

* Strengthens bones and teeth

* Promotes weight loss

* Improves hydration

* Restores exercise capacity

* Builds muscle

* Improves mood

* Alleviates lower blood sugar

* Helps normalize stomach acid

* Aids in arthritis

* Can improve sleep quality

* Protects cells


Bone broth can be made from household groceries or purchased pre-made or in powder form. For a list of 102 powerful recipes, this is a good book to start authored by Louise Hay. Click the link below to purchase from Awakenings. 

Weighted Blankets

According to WebMD, some adults with insomnia, depression and anxiety are rediscovering a feeling of security - - in the form of weighted blankets. These are usually found with plastic pellets adding weight ranging between 4 to 25 pounds. It is said to help people sleep by the calming effect of feeling like they are being held. While not many independent studies have been conducted, the few that have been had shown significant improvement in sleep quality among the patients. Weighted blankets offer deep pressure stimulation, a form of touch pressure that feels like a firm hug or massage. Manufacturing companies suggest picking one that is about 10% of your body weight, although there is no data behind the "right fit." I have personally had sleep issues for many years and believe that a weighted blanket serves its purpose as part of my nightly rituals.

No-Alcohol Beer - Heineken 0.0%

As I sit hear writing this blog, I have been alcohol free for exactly 31 days. And there has been a particular beer that I have to give props to for satisfying an occasional itch when wanting to grab a "cold one" throughout this period. And that is the new Heineken 0.0% Alcohol Free beer. I am definitely a beer lover of all sorts, mostly IPAs. But I have to give this company credit for bringing what I believe is a very satisfying beer without any alcohol. In my opinion, most non alcoholic beers lack the flavor many are looking for out of an adult beverage. I believe as society evolves and raises its awareness to a higher consciousness, many will be seeking out alternatives of being in more control over their own lives. This particular non-alcohol brew is somewhat new to the states, but can be found in select whole food markets and grocery chains. 

Benefits of Mala Beads and How to Use Them

Malas have been traditionally used by Yogis, Hindus, and Buddhists to perform mantra or what is also known as Japa meditation. Although there are traditional rules of using malas, I will go into what has resonated with me, but feel free to find your own truth as you get familiar with these sacred tools in your own spiritual practice. As we learn come to understand the power of our own thought, we then come to realize the power of spoken words. While using a mala strand during your meditation practice, you'll notice that an authentic mala comes with 108 beads, a guru bead and a tassel. 108 is classified as master number among many different religions and cultures, while the tassel can represent your crown chakra. Draped over your right hand between your middle and pointer finger (never allowing the beads to touch your pointer finger as this represents your ego in which we do not wish this to be part of our practice) when reciting your mantra, you will count and bring the beads towards you with your thumb until you reach the final guru bead. You may wear your mala around your neck or wrist as a daily reminder of your practice. Feel free to check out the link below of our updated assortment of malas to choose from in our store.