New Year Detox for the Soul

Emotional Well-being Programs in Luxury Asian Health Resorts

new year detox

At this time of year we have lots of inquiries from guests anticipating the need for a New Year Detox Holiday. After a festive season of guaranteed indulgence, it’s common to offset any guilty feelings by booking in for a luxury cleanse program. Best foot forward in 2016 and all that.

This year however, we’re receiving requests from guests who aren’t simply satisfied with a healthy diet and exercise regime. They are looking for a detox for the soul.

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Are you drinking your own poison?

depression in women

 

Are your expectations of others stressing you out?

I recently underwent a huge life change, returning back to my roots in the UK after 15 years in Asia. It’s been a huge transition and I’m feeling quite ‘out of body’ most the time.

I’m noticing a lot of emotional pain in the people around me (myself included). I see this coming from people’s expectations of how others ‘should’ behave. I’ve noticed this is causing the person who’s having these expectations the most pain. It’s like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die from it. How others behave is simply out of our own control.

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Jumping into the unknown

Making decisions which lead to transformation

Joanne McFarlane

I want to apologize for not being my usual chatty, communicative self but I’ve been through a major life transformation. After 15 years of living in Asia and 25 years of living away from my town of origin and family, I made the decision to move back to the UK. Major changes!

I couldn’t have anticipated what a rollercoaster this experience would be and here I want to share my experience, strength and hope with you all. I adore Soul Sanctuaries; I put my heart and soul into the company and really love to help others on the journey to physical health and emotional wellness. With each experience I personally undergo, I add to my ability to help others.

Have you ever felt like you’re bashing against closed doors?

Whatever you’re trying in life and relationships simply isn’t working?

This was my life over the last year. On the surface, I had a fantastic life in Asia; a beautiful villa, great weather and beaches nearby, a fantastic son and friends whom I adore. Yet I seemed to be constantly facing hardships on all fronts; health, finances and relationships. Some days I found life incredibly difficult and although I was helping others find their balance, my own life was getting more painful by the day. On that note, whenever I felt really low, I allowed myself to feel like that, forgave myself and held on to the thought that tomorrow might just be brighter. Sometimes it wasn’t but I gained small comfort knowing that I’d made it through the previous day with love, support and my dignity intact. I also found it extremely gratifying to still be able to listen to others hardships and maintain a place of healing for others.

I felt like I was being drawn back to the UK, but since I love to procrastinate, I kept putting it off. The universe has a way of forcing the issue and my life became so uncomfortable, I had to make a decision. Sitting outside a bank in Bali, I sat with cash in my hand debating “school fees or plane ticket”. I called friends and mentors, desperately trying to pass the decision making onto somebody else. Eventually I made a decision and plumped for school fees, ensuring my son’s further education abroad. It then became apparent over the following week that I felt like I’d made the wrong decision, that it was time to head back to my roots, to reconnect with family and start afresh.

I’d been told that when the path you decide to walk down feels right, the waters part and doors open. I went to my son’s school and told them I’d made a mistake. They graciously refunded my money. The flight ticket to the UK just got cheaper and cheaper. My villa rented out to a beautiful family with ease. They even adopted our beloved cat Lili.

On arrival I had a bumpy start, I’ll not kid you. Being around family after so long, isn’t without its moments. A lot of my old behaviour’s resurfaced. Luckily I have consciously caught myself people pleasing, becoming overwhelmed and trying to fit into others vision of how I should be.

Within two week’s I’d found a beautiful little house and just the perfect school nearby for my son. I have experienced the milk of human kindness. Family members gave their houses and time. People I didn’t even know gave things for the new house. I’ve had positive signs along the way that this was the right thing to do.

Now I’m asking for guidance in how to develop my beloved company Soul Sanctuaries further and spread it’s European wings. With the possibility of offices in both Asia and Europe, I’m feeling like the future of the company is bright.

What have I gained from this whole experience? To follow my heart. I listened to my inner voice, I overcame the fear of making the decision and I leapt into the unknown. And I am supported. I’m still here and I feel like I’m getting back the positive energy I put into life. It’s not always easy, but if you can find small gratitudes on a daily basis, the sun can shine through the darkest cloud.

I want to take a moment to thank all those beautiful souls who helped me personally through this transformation. I love you all. I also want to thank all those fantastic soul seekers who booked a healthy holiday through Soul Sanctuaries. I love what I do and you blessed me with the ability to help you on a journey of health and wellness.

In Gratitude and with a lot of Soul

Joanne

Digital Stress – Digital Detox

digital detox

Arianna Huffington caused a bit of a stir on Facebook this week when she announced that she would be taking an ‘Email Detox’. Nothing wrong with that I thought, I’m a firm believer in disconnecting to reconnect. It wasn’t until I actually read her intention that I understood what all the fuss what about;

For the first time in my life, I have gone on an email detox, courtesy of HuffPost’s new vacation email tool. Anyone who emails me will receive a response explaining that the email will be deleted. If it is urgent they are invited to reach out to an alternative contact. If it is not, they can reach out when I’m back.” (Arianna Huffington Facebook 29th July 2015)

Never one to sit on the fence when it comes to wellness issues, I posted a comment in reply;

I think that whilst many would agree that a disconnect from technology is a beneficial thing, the ‘delete’ comes across as a disregard of others and what they wish to communicate. I’m sure a delayed response message would allow you personal freedom whilst respecting the views of those who are reaching out to you.”

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What’s your relationship with money?

money relationship

I’ve been exploring my relationship with money and what beliefs I grew up with that might be impeding the abundance I seek in life. As soon as I began to really look in-depth at that part of my life, it was illuminated and I got to look at some pretty ugly stuff. I decided to begin this year with a 40 Day Prosperity Plan, which was a series of affirmations and short meditations.

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Having Faith and Purpose

faith

This week I’ve been thinking about Faith. Not really in the religious since, but in a personal spiritual way. Why am I thinking about faith? Because I’m having a tough time of it to be entirely honest. My son is really unwell this week and if you’re a parent, you know how much you pray for a speedy recovery. It got me thinking about how, when the good times roll, they just roll. Does it take a downturn in events to become really grateful or can we practice faith in a higher power, however you personally manifest that, on a daily basis?
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Anti Gravity Yoga and Meditation in Bali

anti gravity yogaSoul Sanctuaries founder Joanne feeling footloose and fancy free

Always on the search for new authentic wellness experiences for our guests, we heard that Four Seasons Sayan in Ubud, Bali had commissioned a rather special yoga bale. Designed by award winning architect and lover of all things bamboo, Elora Hardy, the yoga bale, which rests at the foot of the resort, was inspired by a lotus petal. Created from sustainable local bamboo, it offers shelter from the elements and is home to the island’s first AntiGravity Yoga.

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Why being of service is a gift

kind

I just have to share this with you all today because I had one of those ‘aha’ moments. I’ve had a ongoing problem for a while now and which ever way I try to tackle it, it’s just not shifting. Leaving nothing to a higher power (swap with God, the universe, collective consciousness, whichever fits), I have been getting highly frustrated with why my sincere efforts are hitting heavy brick walls.

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Ask the Experts : Oriental Medicine

Qigong at Como Bali

I’ve been feeling the stress of running a business, being a single Mum of a six year old and going back to business school lately. I knew that my body was out of sync, but I didn’t ‘have time’ to do anything about it. Screech and rewind!

I run a luxury wellness travel company for goodness sake. How am I supposed to inspire others if I can’t keep myself balanced and healthy?  Without further ado, I booked a private consultation in with David Melladew, Oriental Medicine Consultant at one of our favourite wellness sanctuary partners, COMO Shambhala Estate in Bali.

David Melladew at Como

He began the session with a divine tea ceremony. I love people who are passionate about what they do and that shone through with David. Like myself, he has a genuine drive to help others live in health and vitality and by the end of my consultation I had a accurate diagnosis, an action plan of what to do about it which included some easy steps to do at home and he’d inspired me so much on Traditional Chinese Medicine, that I felt like going to college again!

In this Ask the Experts Health Blog I ask David about Stress and how Oriental Medicine can play a part in finding that essential life balance. Chill out and read on…

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Ask the Experts: Secrets of Spa

luxury spa holidays

How many times have you been for a spa treatment and left feeling like it was a lot of ‘bells and whistles’ and not really relaxing? In this week’s ‘Ask The Experts’ blog, our 4th in the series, we’re talking  all things spa with Spa Aficionado Richard Williams. Richard is a Spa Consultant and Trainer with over 15 years experience in the Spa industry in Australasia. He’s had his healing hands on  5 Star Health Spa Chiva Som, Peninsula Bangkok and most recently A.W. Lake Spa Concepts.

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