Article for The West Australian on 1st April 2021.WELLNESS RETREAT PERTH

Here’s my full answers 🙂  Enjoy.

What are the mental benefits to creating a calm space?

Having a space that you view as your ‘sanctuary’ and an area that you can retreat to from everyday life, has huge benefits on your mental and emotion wellbeing.  Your home should be a place where you enjoy spending time, a place where you can detach from the daily commitments of work and social responsibilities and give you a chance to turn inward. Creating a home that nurtures you in a peaceful way, allows your nervous system to rebalance and can reduce feelings of anxiety.

 Do you have any tips for our readers on creating a wellbeing retreat at home?

I believe in getting back to the basic elements of Earth, Wind, Fire, Water & Space.

Space – Start by simply decluttering your home and only hold on to pieces of furniture or equipment that bring value to the space you’re trying to create. Use natural pieces of furniture where possible to connect with nature.

Earth – You don’t need a large area to create a tranquil retreat, the beautiful greenery of plants instantly softens any indoor or outdoor area.

Wind – Wooden or bamboo wind chimes differ from metal chimes in that they create a very subtle and soothing sound. These sounds contrast the noise of a bustling office or a busy city block.

Fire – When it comes to switching off your mind, there’s really nothing more calming than sitting around a beautiful warm open fire pit on a cool night. It’s very easy to create this space with a simple fire pit and some surrounding eating. The problems of the world seem to fade away while staring at an open fire.

Water – Water features are instantly relaxing and something that can be enjoyed all year round. Flowing water not only sounds relaxing, but it can also attract local bird life and welcome nature into your retreat.

What are some of the benefits of leading a balanced lifestyle and diet?

Creating balance in our lives utilmately allows us to feel happiness and peace. Balance is not always easy to achieve, particularly when times are stressful, so it’s important to prioritise the things that matter and let go of the things that don’t serve us well.  Remember that you only have the capacity to do so much in any given day and that it’s ok. No one expects you to be able to do everything 100% of the time.  True balance comes from reflecting inward and knowing what you want as an individual and working towards optimising those needs.  When it comes to a balanced diet, it’s important to stick to real, whole foods that are nutritious for your body.  Everything that you take into your body should have a purpose, so treat your beautiful body like the amazing temple that it is. Our bodies provide so much to us, they are the vessel in which we live our entire lives, so it’s important that we look after them

Due to reduced travel restrictions, people are spending more time at home, what are your recommendations for physical health and movement at home?

When we have a tranquil and relaxing home retreat with spaces that encourage peace and happiness, we’re more likely to utilise the spaces available to do the activities we enjoy.  We know that Meditation can create a more productive and efficient mind, and Meditation has been proven to reduce stress, anxiety, and aid in calming our central nervous system, which greatly impacts our ability to cope with new challenges.  Although lockdowns and restrictions of movement socially can make you feel as though you have no control, being at home can provide huge benefits to nutrition planning and even an opportunity to enjoy home-cooking more.  Although it might not be obvious, working in an office environment still provides some opportunity for movement which is easy to drop when working from home.  Whether it be the hourly trip to the photocopier, or the morning and afternoon stroll to the cafe, these activities can be lost when working from home. However being home can often provide more opportunities for exercise, if you replace the time you save from your daily commute with online exercise programs. Set yourself up a routine to help you stay on track with your movement and you’ll feel more fulfilled while you’re home-based.