Elise Mitchell

Viewing entries posted in 2014

The 12 Gifts of Gratitude

Posted by Elise Mitchell on December 23, 2014 | 3 comment(s)

The more I witness the subtle and profound shifts in clients after a gratitude practice, the more curious I am about what “the experts” know regarding gratitude’s effect on our overall mental, emotional, physical health. There’s some exciting notions creeping into the scientific community regarding this topic!

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Chicken & Sweet Potato Skillet (Serves 8)

Posted by Elise Mitchell on December 01, 2014 | 0 comment(s)

I appreciate autumn for its quiet yet vibrant salute to the end of summer. Colors are still bright, sun is still warm but there is a lilt in the air like a yawn signaling the slumber of winter to come. This week at the Oasis, I was struck with the brilliance of colors still in the cottonwoods, a sunset that would make the psychedelic artists of the 60s weep, and that stillness in the air… That stillness that invites me to get quiet, calm, listen more intently, settle into the present. I also get excited about the rich, colorful foods that we harvest this time of year – squash and root vegetables reminding us to get centered, grounded. This recipe is all about honoring the seasonal diet that helps keep our bodies in rhythm with our natural surroundings. Try this one out while sweet potatoes and pears are still beckoning!

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Mindfulness Practices for Addiction Recovery

Posted by Elise Mitchell on November 13, 2014 | 7 comment(s)

As a yoga teacher and meditation facilitator for Second Nature Entrada as well as the yoga director for a local, in-patient addiction treatment center for adults, I become giddy (if not a little smug) with every new article or study that references mindfulness as a means of complimentary treatment for behavioral or psychological disorders. Mindfulness is gaining a greater voice in the field of psychology and physiology and we practitioners of such a concept are celebrating!

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An Oasis Moment: Mom’s Chicken Noodle Soup

Posted by Elise Mitchell on October 31, 2014 | 0 comment(s)

I am firstly a yogi by profession and by passion. One of the supreme focuses and goals of a yoga practice is to find balance in all things – the body, perceptions, lifestyle, discernment. So… to be true to my path, I decided it might be healthy to present a recipe that might not fit the healthiest of the “healthy” models… for once. To be sure, a healthy life cannot be sustained by the ‘perfect’ diet. A healthy lifestyle is about what feeds us but not necessarily (or not exclusively) about food. Remember when you were a kid and playing with friends took precedent over coming in for dinner? Your mom had to demand that you come inside and, even then, you ate half of what you should have just to get back out to play some more. Or when you were in love and food was the last thing on your mind? It was something else entirely that fueled you! Food might be a part of the puzzle but sustenance is complex and multidimensional. So this week in the field, we focused on using food to evoke comfort in a way that is balanced – to conjure positive memories, bring us together as friends, family, or community. For me, nothing brings comfort like my mom’s chicken noodle soup. So put down the kale chips and try this recipe out! I hope it warms your belly and heart like it does mine!

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A Mindful Moment: Golden Milk

Posted by Elise Mitchell on October 04, 2014 | 0 comment(s)

An important part of the journey back to health and well-being is to remember how to self-soothe when life is turbulent. At Second Nature, we encourage our clients and students to establish discipline around self-care. Creating comfort in simple, healthy ways is an essential part of that discipline and can be SO much fun to explore! The following recipe is incredibly simple and full of time-tested medicinal properties!!

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The Little Things

Posted by Elise Mitchell on August 17, 2014 | 2 comment(s)

There are so many reasons to invite more mindfulness into one’s life. The reasons are as plentiful as the practices themselves. One of the subjects regarding mindfulness that I enjoy teaching most is, “Indulging the little things.” The implications of enjoying the subtle and simple are far reaching in ways that can surprise and inspire.

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Posted by Elise Mitchell on August 04, 2014 | 0 comment(s)

Pranayama is the Yogic art of breathing. Prana = vital energy, ayama = extension. The practice of pranayama helps bring awareness to the breath bringing the mind to the present moment. The exercise of refining the inhale and exhale can have an extraordinary effect on mood, promoting relaxation, focus, clarity. In the Yogic tradition, the breath is often referred to as a communication with the soul or the vehicle of the soul. Developing a greater understanding and awareness of our breath helps develop a greater awareness of the soul as well. Through the years I’ve been teaching Yoga, the most surprising thing I’ve learned is how profoundly the breath can relieve stress and anxiety with just the simplest practices. Here is one pranayama technique we practiced this week at the Oasis. Try it for yourself!

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Melon & Herb Salad (Serves 8)

Posted by Elise Mitchell on August 04, 2014 | 0 comment(s)

Self-care means so many things. It’s not just about adequate sleep or good hygiene. It’s about allowing gifts into your life no matter how small or large, no matter if you think you ‘deserve’ them or not. Perhaps even more importantly, it’s about knowing how to give those gifts to yourself. Taking a moment on a hot afternoon to prepare yourself a sweet treat like this melon salad may be just what the doctor ordered. Even though this recipe is brimming with sweetness and flavor, you are also nourishing your body with healthy alternatives to empty calories and processed junk food. Let this simple dish be a day at the spa for the taste buds – enjoy!

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Mindful Eating: Many Faces of Meditation

Posted by Elise Mitchell on July 14, 2014 | 0 comment(s)

Thich Nhat Hanh, the well-known Zen Buddhist monk, tells a story about the Buddha being asked what he and his students practice. His reply was, “We sit, we eat, and we sleep.” The inquistitor, perplexed, replied, “but we all do that.” The Buddha, in his perfect wisdom and grace asserted, “Yes but when we sit we know we are sitting. When we sleep, we know we are sleeping, and when we eat, we know we are eating.”

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The Addict Brain & Yoga

Posted by Elise Mitchell on July 07, 2014 | 0 comment(s)

The yoga mat teaches you something about yourself every time you get on it. We can use these lessons toward any personal journey we undertake. In the case of addiction and recovery, the mat is an excellent place to challenge the addict brain. It reveals our knee-jerk reactions to discomfort and our over-indulgent behaviors toward pleasure. Like a mirror, the mat shows us our strengths and weaknesses not just in our physicality but also in our character. The lesson does not stop with a casual glance at our short-comings. Oh no! At this point, we have only taken out our notebooks and pencils.

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