Tag Archives: hippies in the city

Rita Balshaw’s Mindfulness Practices

Mindfulness & Aromatherapy

By Rita Balshaw

Anyone can have a mindfulness practice. Any activity done with pure intention and complete presence is meditation. It doesn’t matter how old you are, how fit you are, if you’re religious or not…mindful meditation is available to us all.

Meditation is all about internal self-connection; by cultivating a deeper connection to ourselves we inevitably gain more understanding into the workings of our bodies, minds and human experiences. In a high pressure society we see more and more people suffering with stress related illnesses; adrenal fatigue, skin conditions, onset obesity, high blood pressure and chronic insomnia.

Mindfulness practice teaches us to literally be mindful – mindful of our thoughts, and mindful of the whole interrelated self; mind, body and spirit.

Historically, meditation forms the foundation of the ancient Indian Ayurvedic approach to healing and balancing the physical, mental, emotional and spiritual body. By maintaining an open and healthy flowing energy through the body we can free ourselves of the physical and emotional disturbances that essentially may cause chronic stress and illness.

 

Meditation + Essential Oils

It is said that smells influence how we feel more than any other sensory experience. Essential oils enhance the energetic vibration of our own unique energy field that almost instantaneously transports you to a place of peace and calm. The tradition of using essential oils and aromatic incense resins which are conducive to meditative practice continues to be embraced in today’s contemporary world, bringing relaxation and awareness to the lives of many.

The essential oils I like to use for meditation are frankincense, rose absolute, petitgrain, jasmine, neroli, juniper berry, rosemary, jatamansi, lavender, sage, basil and lotus. These aromas effectively promote a clear mind and joyful heart, leaving me to feel grounded, balanced and in complete harmony.

 

How do I Meditate?

The best time to start meditation is now! That’s right, right now. Switch off your computer and mobile phone. Just sit. Close your eyes. Breathe. Take deep inhales and slow exhales. Relax your shoulders, softening with each gentle exhale. Notice how your physical body is feeling. Allow your thoughts to come and go. Observe how deep or shallow your breath is. Bring your awareness into your heart and enjoy a few moments to connect with your true self. First thing in the morning is a great time for meditation; it will help keep your body feeling energised and your state of mind positive. You will discover how meditation gently takes you into the present moment and towards self- actualisation.

 

DIY Meditation Mist

This Meditation Mist is an exclusive blend of essential oils that will help to rebalance and harmonise the energy centres within the subtle body. Use this mist any way you please; before meditation, to clean your yoga mat, as an aromatic mist to promote relaxation.

 

50ml glass spray bottle 

Purified water

20 drops essential oil solubiliser 

6 drops sage essential oil

6 drops rose essential oil

6 drops frankincense essential oil 

10 drops lemon essential oil

 

Add all ingredients to a clean glass spray bottle and gently shake to combine. Always label and date your homemade aromatherapy products.

 

Meditation Extras

Allocate a quiet and clean space, decked out with comfortable cushions, an aromatherapy diffuser, candles and anything spiritually symbolic to help you to commit to your daily practice. Listening to tranquil, euphoric or tribal music whilst meditating will help to enhance your level of relaxation, guiding you towards stillness. Sipping on our Perfect Potion Chakra Balancing Tea prior to mediation is a great way to promote serenity and spiritual expansion.

 

By Rita Balshaw

Natural Therapist
Dip. Holistic meditation
Cert. wellness coach, facial therapist,
doula, herbalist & restorative yoga teacher  

 

The Chakra Diet

When you think of Chakra balancing you probably don’t think about food! And, assumably your mind directly wanders to the more obvious Chakra healing methods of colour therapy, certain yoga poses, crystals, essences or perhaps the Perfect Potion Chakra Balancing Range. Balancing the energy centres within the body (aka the chakras) can be achieved by including and excluding certain foods, working on the premise that every food commodity has a certain energetic healing vibration and frequency.

Since ancient times, it was known that people who took care of themselves holistically lived healthier and longer lives. Acknowledging our physical and emotional health via the energy of the 7 chakras allows for a successful mind body connection. This is something that has been held of great importance in Ayurvedic healing traditions. When the body is in balance and we are physically and mentally healthy everything just seems to fall into place. Health is an expression of balance, and Ayurveda views disease as an expression of imbalance within the body. The Ancient System of Chakra Balancing and its wise philosophies will provide insight into your true self, empowering you to heal and manage all dimensions of your being.

Here we discover how certain food groups can be used to effectively restore and harmonise each unique Chakra.

 


 

Base/Root Chakra

The journey through the chakras begins with the base chakra. The base chakra is concerned with survival, security and basic human needs. This chakra reflects our connection to life-force energy and helps us to stay grounded and embodied. The foods to promote healthy base energy must be nourishing and grounding, such as: root vegetables like carrots, pumpkin, potatoes, parsnips, radishes, beetroot, onions, garlic and protein-rich foods like organic eggs, lean red meat, beans and tofu.

 


 

Sacral Chakra

This particular energy field is very much associated with creativity, fluidity and sexual energy. Enjoying sensuality and pleasure all assist in enhancing the vitality of the sacral chakra.  Enjoy sweet and light foods; mango, mandarin, papaya, passionfruit, raw honey, maple syrup, dates, figs, almond, cashews and fresh coconut water.

 

 


 

Solar Plexus Chakra

This one all is about empowerment and transformation. The solar plexus is healthy when we feel confident, assertive and free from feelings of anger and resentment. To keep this chakra healthy, one must embrace a diet that includes yellow, high enzyme foods that allow for good digestion. Things like, pineapples, bananas, squash, lemons and spices like ginger, mustard seeds and turmeric. Brewing up a spicy ginger, cinnamon and turmeric latte, based on almond milk will serve the digestion greatly.

 


 

Heart Chakra 

The heart chakra is concerned with forgiveness and compassion. We experience unconditional love through the heart chakra and it is where we develop true self-acceptance. When this particular chakra is in balance it encourages feelings of positivity, openness and connection. The heart is said to be the core of immunity, vitality and inner strength, this is often why people become sick and weak when they experience conflict or grief. A diet full of nourishing green vegetables, fruits and super foods is a great way to heal this chakra. Be sure to include plenty of spinach, zucchini, basil, kale, broccoli, beans, peas and asparagus. Enjoy kiwi fruit, green apples, cucumbers, avocado and limes, wheat grass, matcha powder and green tea.

 


 

Throat Chakra

The throat chakra deals with communication, truthfulness and creative expression. Imbalances within the throat chakra can result in indecisiveness, lack of creative expression, inability to accept criticism. Swollen glands, thyroid issues and a sore throat can be a physical manifestation of blockages within this energy field. Although blue foods are rare, having plenty of blueberries and blackberries are your best bet to assist with healing the throat chakra. Try a soothing blueberry smoothie, using almond milk, raw honey, steamed purple sweet potato and chia seeds.

 


 

Third Eye Chakra 

Often referred to as the center of intuition, imagination and mindfulness, this chakra is concerned with trusting your inner knowing rather than over analysing situations. The sixth chakra is the gateway into a high realm of consciousness, where we develop connection to the spiritual world. The good news is that raw chocolate is one of the best foods for the third eye chakra; raw cacao stimulates mental clarity and raises the human vibration making you feel blissful and present in the moment. Raw chocolate also contains MAO inhibitors (monoamine oxidase) which allows more of the feel good serotonin to circulate in the brain. Intuitive and mindful eating is governed by the third-eye chakra and it is best to eat lots of food that support brain function. Sustainably caught fish, walnuts, almonds, hemp seeds and flaxseed oil are wonderful sources of essential fatty acids, that contributes to a healthy and happy brain.

 


Crown Chakra 

The Crown Chakra is our highest energy centre, located at the top of the head. It represents freedom, deep understanding, spiritual enlightenment and union with the higher self. Opening or balancing your Crown Chakra can bring a profound awakening, a connection to your spiritual nature as well as to cosmic consciousness, and a deep understanding of universal love. To support the frequency of this chakra it is important to eat and drink commodities that are considered healing and sacred. Gotu Kola, ashwaganda, tulsi basil, ginseng and bramhi are helpful herbs to promote clarity and spiritual connection. Fasting and cleansing programs is said to purify the body and mind, leading to Crown Chakra awakening.

D.I.Y Calamine Lotion

By Rita Balshaw, author of Hippies in the City

Some store bought calamine lotion brands contain nasty ingredients, including synthetic fragrances and parabens. I speak to many health conscious mothers across our Perfect Potion stores. A popular subject of interest is how to treat common aliments for children, these include natural remedies for skin conditions, heat rashes, chicken pox, burns and bites. The following natural “Calamine Lotion” recipe is an easy to make homemade, natural remedy that works a treat to alleviate itching, redness and inflammation.

 

2 tbs pink clay

2 tbs bicarb soda

2 drops lavender essential oil

2 drops tea tree essential oil

1 tbs 50ml rose water

 

Use a teaspoon to mix all the ingredients in a small dish, slowly add in the rose water until a smooth paste consistency is achieved. Transfer the paste to a clean jar and refrigerate to keep for 3 to 5 days. Apply this soothing lotion to the affected areas and allow to dry before rinsing in a warm bath using Top To Toe Wash. Applying an additional healing ointment like the Protect and Repair Balm is an absolute godsend to help to further soothe and heal skin irritation.


Autumn Bowls

BY RITA BALSHAW – Hippies in the City

Serves 4

The autumn season is traditionally a period for restoration and replenishment. Be sure to nourish yourself with the following wholefoods meal, that is a delicious and hearty dish, full of colour, flavour and nutritional lavishness.

1 cup buckwheat or quinoa
1/2 a butternut pumpkin
2 baby carrots
2 beetroots
2 parsnips
2 turnips
1 bunch kale
1 bunch parsley
1 tsp fine sea salt
1 tsp cracked pepper
1 tblsp curry powder
1 tsp cumin powder
1 cinnamon stick
1 tsp cinnamon powder
1 tsp organic honey
2 tsp Fairtrade Organic Nabali Tree Olive Oil
1 cup pecans

Bring the buckwheat groats and one cinnamon stick to boil in salted water, then simmer for about fifteen minutes. Strain the buckwheat, drizzle with a little olive oil and set aside.

Thoroughly wash, chop and slice all the vegetables. Take a large oven tray and grease it with olive oil. Evenly sprinkle the awaiting veggies with heaps of salt, pepper, curry, cumin and cinnamon powder. I always splash my veggies with a tablespoon or two of water and a little honey before baking to ensure a moist, yet crunchy outcome. Cooking time is roughly twenty-five minutes in a fan forced oven at 180°C. Serve your guests a portion of the mixed roasted veggies and a scoop of buckwheat into pretty serving bowls, along with a handful of pecans, dollop of fresh hummus, chopped parsley and a good splash of tamari soy sauce.

*The pumpkin is best cut into boat style slices prior to roasting.

DIY Recipes for Luscious Locks

Treat your hair to the sacred art of alchemy and aromatherapy! Concoct and apply these DIY recipes to feed, nurture and revitalise your locks and drench your hair in natural goodness!

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Cleaning your home naturally!

Your home is your sanctuary – a place to unwind and escape from the stress, toxins and pollution of our modern world. What’s scary though, is that there are often more toxic chemicals lurking inside your home than in the middle of big cities and industrial centres!!

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