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8 Days of Magic: Experiencing Connection on a Yoga Retreat to Tulum

March 28, 2016

Yoga retreats are a time to connect deeper to oneself and the world around her. Read Tulum retreat leader, Jazz Braden’s account of connecting to oneness in Tulum below: 

I haven’t looked in a mirror in 8 days. But I have allowed a comfort and surrender into my own skin unlike I’ve ever felt.

I haven’t planned a task or a to-do list in 8 days. But I have become so aligned with my surroundings that wondering what’s next is far too much of a distraction from the beauty in this very moment.

I haven’t compared or measured myself to others achievements for 8 days. Instead, I have been removed from my routine and realized how much energy is wasted on thoughts of how I measure up.

I haven’t slept less than 9 hours a night in 8 days. I have come to understand that my self-care practice demands more attention and sleep is non-negotiable.

I haven’t seen my beloved in 8 days. But I have been held, nurtured, cared for and loved by people I have just met and now feel like family with.

I haven’t felt the need to appear a certain way in anyone’s eyes. But I have been completely honest with how hard it can be to trust my teachings as being worth sharing.

I haven’t wondered if I was in the right place for 8 days. Instead, I have felt so incredibly grounded and content that this, right here, is where I need to be.

I haven’t worn shoes in 8 days. But I have felt the earth soften beneath my feet, urging me to just slow down… 

I had no idea what to expect from these 8 days. But the connections built within this time together has shown me how much we all really have in common. No matter what your story is, where you come from, what religion you practice or what faith you believe, in 8 short days, you can let the barriers and walls melt away and remember this one universal truth: we are one.

Photos courtesy of Rebecca Jo

Born and raised in Yellowknife, NWT Jazz grew up with a massive appreciation for the wild outdoors. Every day, her family would bundle up and brave any arctic temperature and go play outside. Trudging through the snow, canoeing on the lake, climbing on the rocks or skiing through the trees was the cure to any and all problems. Movement was always a big part of her life, but it wasn’t until she stumbled onto a yoga mat that she understood why her mother rushed her out of the door at -40 degrees in the dead of winter. At the most basic and primal level, we all crave one thing: Connection. We want to feel connected to something greater then ourselves. The truest and simplest ways (I have found) to feel connected is by being in nature or by practicing yoga.

Jazz teaches vinyasa flow style yoga that offers something for every body. You are given space to challenge yourself and be playful, as every sequence creatively brings you closer to your true self. Mantra work, pranayam, heartfelt intention, soulful music and a sense of community are all important elements of her classes. Through play and adventure, you flow into a deeper understanding of your own body and ultimately wake up to your own divinity.

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