3 Mindful Remedies Popping Up All Around San Diego in 2019
Do these new workshops deliver real mind gains…or are they just mind games? Practitioners weigh in.
Breath work simply means focusing on your breathing, in ways that help reprogram your nervous system and release tension and trauma from the body. It’s also been claimed to improve digestion and the immune system. “Breath work lets us drop into our bodies, still the mind, release negativity, and rewrite some of our narrative that’s not serving us,” explains Cristin Smith, owner of Saffron & Sage Wellness Center. But it is work: “Some assume it’s long, deep breathing, which is definitely not the case,” adds Chelcy Pine, a breath work practitioner. “It’s fairly quick and meant to bring a lot of oxygen in.” In rare instances the practice has induced hyperventilation, so it should always be done under supervision. You can try it in Pine’s Sacred Sunday program: In a candlelit room, she guides you through healing breath and “toning,” where one shakes the body while releasing emotional energy into sound waves—i.e., screams.
They say the hardest part of going to the gym is going to the gym—so we’ll go with a friend. The same can be said for meditation. Four Moons Spa in Leucadia takes the notion of finding Zen with the support of others one step further by adding an “intuitive channeler,” Diana Seuffert, to its Wednesday Transformational Healing Meditation Circle. Seuffert uses music to evoke different themes and intentions while her musings and messaging heal the group on an energetic level—think of it like a spiritual TED Talk. Four Moons Spa owner Courtney Mars sums up the practice: “People are drawn to community and connection. It feels good to sit in that energy.”
Gongs, singing crystal bowls, and other sound makers are used in this centuries-old practice. “The foundation is to facilitate a state of deep relaxation by guiding the mind into stillness,” says Steve Hart, yoga practitioner and sound healer at Riffs Studios in Bird Rock. “Sound can take you to that place between the waking and dreaming state, where the brain emits theta waves, which helps the body to relax, heal pain, release trauma, de-stress or hear subconscious messages.” Don’t assume the good vibrations can cure you of diagnosed conditions like PTSD or anxiety disorder, but do expect it to keep getting more interesting. Riffs even offers sound healing sessions combined with acupuncture.