Elizabeth's Journey-My Desire to Heal Others Through Yoga
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“Service” is the action of helping or doing work for someone. Oftentimes, people perform a service with the expectation of receiving something in return. What differentiates service from “Seva”, the Sanskrit word for “selfless service”? A service that is selfless stems from an innate desire to be a catalyst for positive change without acknowledgement. A selfless service arises from a deep passion to alleviate the pain and suffering of another through generosity, support, and compassion. It is an act you do without a wavering thought because you feel the most alive and connected to the universe while you do it. I believe a person shares their services selflessly when the soul’s true calling has been awakened, an alignment forms with our innate gifts and “Seva” becomes a daily occurrence. You begin to selflessly serve because you are living your life’s purpose. Everyone has the capacity to serve unselfishly. Ram Dass explains this beautifully: “'Helping out is not some special skill. It is not the domain of rare individuals. It is not confined to a single part of our lives. We simply heed the call of that natural impulse within and follow it where it leads us.”
The journey towards sharing my soul’s gifts with others is still unfolding. I was drawn to nutrition, particularly nutrition counseling, after struggling with my weight and body image throughout my teens and mid 20’s. For many years I lived disconnected from my body and its needs. It was not until I started connecting with myself, letting go of what wasn’t serving me any good purpose, and stumbled upon yoga that my life changed dramatically. Brené Brown puts it simply yet profoundly: “Only when we are brave enough to explore the darkness will we discover the infinite power of our light.” In a time of darkness, I began to realize it was imperative I share my passion for wellness along with my natural connection to the mind, body and spirit so I may give back to help those in need.
I am a Registered Dietitian presently privately contracted in Manhattan at Nutrition Energy and Aurora Behavior Health Center. I aim to help people every day in any way I can and where they are open. I would describe myself as a vibrant woman who has a healthy relationship with food. I am a listener, an empath, a communicator, and a healer deep down to my bones. My approach to health and wellness is simple yet profound. My interests in meditation and mindfulness are the base to my philosophy of nutrition, health, and well-being. My counseling sessions are individually based and I believe in first restoring the body by replenishing macro-nutrients, vitamins and minerals to promote clarity of the mind and improve energy levels. Secondly I focuse on addressing the root of the cause; the how and why eating patterns, behaviors, and habits have become imbalanced. To do this I integrate cognitive behavior therapy, motivational interviewing, and empathetic listening in my nutrition counseling sessions. I aim to empower each client to nourish their mind and body by connecting to their hunger and satiety cues. I coach my clients to become intuitive eaters to better meet their bodies needs and develop a healthy relationship with food. I believe food can heal the body and integrate this philosophy by encouraging my clients to consume fresh whole foods while observing how certain foods energize, calm, and soothe while other foods decrease energy, aggravate, and fatigue the body, mind and soul. During many of my sessions, my clients share their worries, fears, and deepest desires as it relates to health, nutrition, and wellness. In these moments I commit to being fully present. I enjoy stepping into their world and shining light into the habits and beliefs that are holding them back.
The way I believe we can inspire others to be selfless in their services is to teach individuals to look within and find gratitude for their lessons in life and their teachers. I think being selfless starts by being open to healing our wounds and becoming immersed in our passions. I would encourage anyone who provides a service to the world to never stop getting to know “you.” Give the body and mind love, nourishment, patience, and kindness daily. Engage in activities that make you feel alive: practice yoga, quiet the mind, go for walks, laugh with friends, and view food as energy and a healing source. Each day practice giving thanks to those who caused you pain, told you no, gave you a yes, forced you to grow, and for the people who were there for you every step of the way. Doing so will allow the soul to speak louder than the chains of the mind, and help to guide you towards your purposeful way of living.
A service I would like to see more of is integration of yoga and nutrition, for mind, body, and soul healing. I specifically would like to integrate mindfulness of the body into the treatment of eating disorders, people who struggle with their weight, and those interested in bringing balance to their body. It would be dream to combine the philosophy of yoga, meditation, and poses with nutrition education, behavioral change techniques, and Ayurveda philosophies. I believe yoga can teach a person to relate to their body in a more compassionate and honest way. The connection of mind, body, and soul is enhanced by nutrition and the practice of yoga. I hope to make this service happen by beginning my journey as a student in the 28 day Intensive Yoga Teacher Training Program in November-December 2016 at Anamaya Resort in Costa Rica. I have been accepted into the program and have to decided to fundraise to help pay for the cost of the teacher training. I appreciate all of your support and kinds words go even farther than a monetary contribution. Please feel free to give what you can and that can even be words of encouragement. Many thanks and much love, light and happiness from my soul to yours, Love Elizabeth. http://www.anamayaresort.com/