More and more people are finding the benefits of yoga, the 3,000-year-old practice now found in most gyms, workplaces and office settings around the world. The corporate yoga boom has created a niche for teachers that specialise in office surroundings creating lunch-hour breaks full of DD. Downward dog, that is.
Common benefits of increased productivity and motivation, improved decision making and higher level of confidence are most likely obvious to anyone already practising yoga. However, those less in the know might find it surprising that yoga even benefits people working heavily on the right hemisphere of the brain.
In order to find out more we talked to Helsinki-based creative, designer, goldsmith and yoga instructor Matilda Mannström about yoga, the office and the the importance of living a life open to more creativity. A life with more yoga – less spandex, six-packs and forced asanas.
Hi Matilda, congratulations on the new studio! Could you tell us about your daily creative routine?
Thank you! As an entrepreneur in two very different branches, my days never look the same. I have very few daily routines. For me, it’s more about being mindful. However, one routine I do stick to, is my morning yoga – in bed. It’s quite spontaneous and I simply do whatever feels amazing. In addition, I find that good food is fuel. I make sure that I have time to eat and I eat healthy and slow while enjoying every single bite. Before giving a class, I always take time to sit in silence, reflecting on the mind and my day. I strongly believe that silence boosts creativity.
How does one stay full of ideas?
Ideas are born from curiosity. Curiosity to me, is having a strong desire to know the truth. To constantly explore new things and actively choose to live in the present moment. Also, make sure you surround yourself with amazing people. Light attracts light! Hang out with individuals that make you a better person.
Why yoga though?
Yoga is life. Yoga is happening right now if you choose so. If you let your limitations burn you will realise that anything is possible. The asana practice is only a small part of yoga. To LIVE it is the difficult part. I recommend a regular meditation practice. Reset the system – return to the very base. And do it every single day.
THREE BEST MOVES TO KEEP YOU CREATIVE:
Rather do these asanas than do none, but keep it serious – yoga is powerful!
Morning creativity boost? Cat and Cow
Evening calm down? Malasana
MATILDA’S RECOMMENDATIONS FOR CREATIVE FLOW:
Make lists! Mind map the things you really want in life. Manifest. Write down dreams that are too wild. Those that are almost embarrassing! Both physically and emotionally cultivate the feeling of already having achieved the dream. Decide that it will happen.
Break habits! Can you take another route to work? Choose a matcha latte instead of a flat white. Move around in the yoga shala – skip your normal spot in the second row by the right wall and head for the opposite.
Consume art every day! Listen to music and when you do, really listen. Go into an art gallery for five minutes, it’s free. Go to the movies all by yourself and make it Monday. At noon.
Do random acts of kindness! Compliment a stranger’s haircut or buy your colleague’s favourite bon-bons. Say thank you to the bus driver.
Malasana! Answer scroll through Instagram and text in this pose. Watch TV or read an article.
Get upside-down! Do it once a day. DD. Or join my class.
Sick of the old routine? Looking for a more creative and inspiring work space? Look no further: www.mow.fi