"Ayurveda taught me to have a calmer mind"— Laura Bridge (Sunday Stories 1st Edition)

by Shinjini Guha December 23, 2020

"When I think back to my early 20’s, I was emotionally completely out of balance, suffering full-blown panic attacks, stress, and living in a state of ‘fight or flight’. I’d attended my very first yoga class which had started with alternate nostril breathing and stayed about 15 seconds on the mat before I ran out. 

I’d been suffering unresolved childhood trauma and my quest and dedication to finding peace took me on the most extraordinary life journey from Ayahuasca ceremonies in the Peruvian Amazon Jungle to an Ayurveda center in a Sri Lankan jungle to find teachers in the concrete jungles! The moment of clarity when I finally found the root causes of my stress came during a guided group meditation. It was such a profound moment and I’m forever grateful that I never gave up because my focus is no longer about me, but giving back and inspiring through teaching the principles of Ayurveda especially in relation to food.

During 2014, I’d been traveling extensively, working as an Executive Chef, and wanted purely to do an exercise that I could practice consistently wherever I was, so I started as a complete beginner doing regular yoga classes with Five Parks Yoga on YouTube. Then In 2018, I went to Plantation Villa, an Ayurveda center in Sri Lanka for 3 weeks to reenergize and it’s here that I was introduced to the gentle yet powerful and healing treatments and concepts of Ayurveda, which completely changed the course of my life as I retrained to be a certified Ayurveda Chef Hale Pule and Lifestyle, diet and nutrition consultant Ayurveda Pura.

I learned so much from the yoga teachers at The Plantation Villa: Karen & Jane and realised how Yoga is so much more than a form of exercise. For example, It encourages me to be in the moment, to not be angry at the past or scared of the future, but that everything is perfect in the NOW, when I connect with my breath. It’s taught me to be kind to myself, that if I find an asana/position difficult, that it’s ok, I don’t need to push and hurt myself, but just gently keep trying, because as with life, it’s really all about the journey, living in harmony.

Additionally, Ayurveda taught me to practice other healthy daily habits resulting in weight loss, more happiness, and definitely a calmer mind. Yoga combined with meditation allows me to move physically and emotionally in a more fluid way. Just recently I realised that two nights of poor sleep were directly related to the fact that I’d not meditated on those two days!

Also, I naturally transitioned to a more plant-based diet and began really tuning in and learning to incorporate foods with opposite qualities to how I was feeling and my environment, for example, the weather here in London is now cold, changeable, and windy, so I cook more grounding, warm, seasonal unctuous soups and veggie curries rather than eating dry crackers, hummus, and salads.

For anyone considering starting practicing Ayurveda, Yoga, or Meditation, they should bear in mind, it’s not so much about being good at them, rather it's being better, happier at Life. The more light you can shine inside, the more you can offer others, after all, that’s the point, isn’t it?"

Shinjini Guha
Shinjini Guha

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