YOTEL Boston introduces ‘Meditation Mondays’ with The Boston Buddha!

AKYotel
Sky Lounge at YOTEL Boston, 65 Seaport Boulevard, Boston, MA

WHAT: Newly opened YOTEL Boston, the affordable luxury hotel inspired by first-class air travel, introduces ‘Meditation Mondays’ with The Boston Buddha, Andy Kelley, beginning Monday, September 18 at Sky Lounge!

Locals and hotel guests alike are welcomed to the Seaport hotel’s rooftop Sky Lounge for 30-minute guided meditation set against the backdrop of Boston’s skyline. Andy Kelley will help attendees hone their focus and mindfulness, Mondays from 8-8:30am, so they can tackle the workweek ahead.

 ‘Meditation Mondays’ is just the latest wellness offering from YOTEL. The hotel brand also produces Mindfresh, a series of 5-minute meditation and relaxation videos available for viewing in-cabin and on the YOTEL app.

Research shows that how we spend the first hour of the morning often sets the pace for the day. Why not, wake up and start the day & work week feeling relaxed and recharged? Attend ‘Meditation Mondays’ in PJs, athleticwear or business clothes and leave feeling happier, focused and energized. The series is a definite antidote for anyone with a case of the Mondays!

WHEN:     Monday mornings starting September 18th, 8-8:30am

COST:     $15 per session; complimentary for YOTEL guests

To book reservations, visit: https://yotelmeditationmondays.eventbrite.com

CONTACT:            Phone: (617) 377-4747

Web:     www.yotel.com/boston

Meditation For People Who Don’t Get It But Really Need It

chalene-show

New York Times Best Selling Author, Celebrity Fitness trainer  Chalene Johnson recently asked me to be a guest on her podcast show!  I’d love for you to take a listen below and let me know your thoughts…

The Chalene Show – Podcasts – Meditation For People Who Dont Get It But Really Need It

Today is the day that I start my journey towards understanding if meditation has a place in my daily routine.  I’m speaking Andrew Kelley, a.k.a. “The Boston Buddha”.  Andy answers all of my rapidly-paced questions about meditation: Do I have to close my eyes? Do I have to sit with my legs crossed? Where should I meditate and for how long? And, most importantly, WHY should I meditate?

Fact: A lot of very successful people meditate. Another fact: I don’t. However, it seems like everywhere I turn, another super successful person is mentioning how important meditation is to them  on a daily basis. I already have a process that I go through every morning: plan my day, make my bed, stop and take a moment of gratitude, pray, exercise –  is there even room for meditation?

Some common questions about meditation:

Do I have to close my eyes?

Andy says, “No,” but he does recommend that as you’re starting, you should block out as many distractions as possible – and closing your eyes helps.

Do I have to sit with my legs crossed?

Nope. Andy says the idea is to be comfortable and that early practitioners of meditation didn’t have comfy couches like we do.

Why should I meditate?

People who practice and endorse meditation say that it helps them re-focus their mind and also provides them with a sense of calm. Andy says he started meditating because he was having a hard time sleeping and he was pleasantly surprised that it only took one week for his sleeping habits to improve.

When should I meditate?

There is no “right’ time, but you might have to make meditating a priority in your schedule. Many people meditate in the morning because there is nothing else scheduled at that time – it’s quiet and there are no pressing demands on their time. You’ll need to find the time that works best for yourself.

Lastly, JOIN ME ON MY 30-DAY CHALLENGE THROUGH MEDITATION!

Visit THIS Facebook post and tell us how you’re doing!

CONNECT WITH CHALENE:

Chalene on Facebook: www.facebook.com/chalene

Chalene on Instagram: www.instagram.com/chalenejohnson

Chalene on Pinterest: www.pinterest.com/chalenejohnson

Chalene on Twitter: www.twitter.com/chalenejohnson

Chalene on Youtube: www.youtube.com/chalenejohnson

Some of Chalene’s Instagram Accounts:

www.instagram.com/instagramimpact

www.instagram.com/pushmedaily

www.instagram.com/homeworkouts_4u

www.instagram.com/chalenefashion

Want more great tips and resources on improving balance, energy, organization, health fitness, relationships, focus, faith and happiness? Each episode of my podcast, The Chalene Show is designed to give you strategies and simple steps you can implement today to become a better, more balanced, happier version of yourself. LISTEN NOW!

How to Sit

The most common questions I get when I introduce meditation to anyone is, “does it matter how I sit?” and  “do I need to sit cross-legged like a pretzel on the floor to meditate?”. howtosit

My response is always the same – the key is to be comfortable. If you’re not comfortable, it may be easier for you to give up meditating altogether.

Unless we’re doing a body scan or chakra toning, it’s preferable not to lay down – because people have a tendency to fall back to sleep when they lay down, but other than that, sitting in a particular posture really isn’t that important to me.

There are many meditation disciplines that emphasize sitting ‘the right way’ quite a bit. If you were in class on Monday, you heard Betty giving direction on how to formally sit in the seven pointed posture – and it makes sense – certain seated positions not only open us up physically but also open us up emotionally. When our posture is open, when our spine is erect and our hands are not crossed in front of us, we feel more open and confident! In fact, if you sit straight up you get more oxygen to the brain making it easier to learn.

With all that said, what I’ve found over the years is that while the posture we use in a formal class is useful, what happens sometimes is we get so wrapped up on perfecting and maintaining that perfect posture that it becomes less open and more rigid.  We focus on how to make the perfect seat (adding blankets, blosters, etc) so my leg won’t fall asleep. We start to hyperfocus on perfecting ‘the one seat’.

For me, I never sit on the floor at home. In fact, much like this picture of my son meditating before school, I sit on a couch with with a blanket over me. I suggest the real reason that yogis sat on the floor thousands of years ago is… wait for it… because they didn’t have comfortable chairs!

What I try to do in my seat is cultivate an inner attitude for openness. What’s most important is that we approach meditation with the quality of being relaxed, open, and alert. Especially in the beginning. The last thing I want to be thinking about during my meditation is how much pain in my body is in – I really don’t need the extra distractions… I do fine all by myself . So, it’s all about our inner attitude.

A few questions for you to think about as you find YOUR seat – whether it’s slouchy or straight – Are you open or closed off? Do you sit with ease? Is your approach simple or rigid? Are you thinking too much about the body during the meditation?

Be comfortable.

I hope this helps!

-Andy

Commit to Sit 2015 – The 250 Work Day Meditation Challenge

TBB_transformMeditation, much like exercise isn’t always easy.  Most people don’t like it, but if we can get past a certain point together – usually it takes about two weeks to a month of workouts – you’ll get committed.  So to help you stay committed you can connect with us every week.

The Challenge:

Meditate, twice a day – for 10 minutes, Monday through Friday, 5 days a week. Take the weekend off.

Who:

Whether you are a beginner or an experienced meditator, if you want to harness the power of meditation to manage stress, lower blood pressure, improve focus, get better sleep, or explore your own inner landscape, this is an exceptional opportunity to learn with some of the most accomplished leaders in the field of mindfulness and meditation. We welcome everyone to be part of this amazing journey.

When:

Starting January 6, this meditation challenge will be open to everyone. We will kick it off again this year at Monday’s Move & Meditate 6:30 PM at Stil Studio. Invite your friends!

The Path:

We will break each week down into themes. The theme is designed to help us focus on one aspect of meditation and mindfulness that we can work on for that week. Each theme will have a corresponding quote – that we can come back to and read. It should help us remember to practice mindfulness in our everyday life. We want to keep the theme of the week in our awareness all week long so we suggest people print it our or post it all over your home/work, etc. The 250 work day challenge is designed to show you how easy it can be to work meditation into your day – integrating a new mindful attitude – changing your choices and life.

Throughout the WHOLE YEAR we will explore many different meditation styles and practices – and play around with different techniques, time periods, and provide tools that keep you inspired to commit to sit. The goal is to find a mediation practice that works for YOU, so you can sustain it throughout the whole year. You can have access to our special Move & Meditate Facebook Group where we can support and encourage each other the whole year, share our experience, the breakthroughs and roadblocks, ask questions, and offer ideas and theme suggestions for future classes.

We encourage everyone to share their own personal experiences each day on the fb page so we can keep it central, and you can see your own growth over time, you can also share tips and suggestions from your personal experience.

The Method:

• daily tips, posts, and inspirational quotes.

• more BuddhaBreaks and takeaways tools to assist you in creating lasting change through meditation.

• got a question about meditation? “Ask Andy” anytime.

Please join us on our heartfelt mission to bring meditation and mindfulness into your daily life and into the lives of those around you.

Why:

Since August of 2005, my dharma has been simple and clear – make meditation accessible to as many people as I can so they can connect more fully to the present moment and be happier in their lives.

I hope to see you in class!

-Andy

Commit To Sit 2014 – The 250 "Work Day" Meditation Challenge with Stil Studio and The Boston Buddha

TBB_feel

“Don’t think. Feel.”  – Bruce Lee

 

The Challenge:

Meditate twice a day – for ten minutes – Monday through Friday, 5 days a week.  Take the weekend off.

GOOD NEWS: Yoga and Shavasana count as a meditation, so come to yoga with us at STIL STUDIO!

Who:

Whether you are a beginner or have years of experience, join us to manage your stress a little easier, lower your blood pressure, improve your focus, enjoy better sleep or explore your inner landscape – this is an exceptional opportunity to learn with some of the most accomplished leaders in the field of mindfulness and meditation. We welcome everyone to be a part of this amazing journey!

What: Meditate with The Boston Buddha and Stil Studio.

When: Continue reading “Commit To Sit 2014 – The 250 "Work Day" Meditation Challenge with Stil Studio and The Boston Buddha”

Winter Solstice – Yoga & Meditation

Winter Solstice  – Yoga & Meditation – @ STIL YOGA

   Thursday, December 20, 2012      7:00 to 8:00 PM

Stil Studio, 740 Legacy Place, Dedham, MA 02026

with Betty Riaz & Andy Kelley

The holidays are a time to gather with family and friends – to reflect, and enjoy the new season.  What better way to approach the New Year with renewed energy, flexibility, and inner strength!

Come celebrate the beginning of the Winter Solstice at STIL Yoga with Betty & The Boston Buddha. We will transition into a new way of BEING by honoring the cycles of life and setting some positive intentions for the New Year.  It’s a beautiful time where the Sun Stands STIL!

Continue reading “Winter Solstice – Yoga & Meditation”

Face Your Own Personal El Guapos

“In a way, all of us have an El Guapo to face.  For some, shyness might be their El Guapo.  For others, a lack of education might be their El Guapo. For us, El Guapo is a big, dangerous man who wants to kill us.  But as sure as my name is Lucky Day, the people of Santa Poco can conquer their own personal El Guapo, who also happens to be *the actual* El Guapo!”

– Lucky Day,  The Three Amigos

El Guapos

Whatever you want to call it… threats, problems, obstacles, hopes, worries, struggles, anxieties, suffering – we all have our own triggers for our emotions and fears.  These fears clutter our thought process – they block our creativity, constrict our choices, and force us to react in predictable ways.

If we don’t learn to face our fears head on, and work with these powerful emotions as they bubble up, they can have a negative impact on our mental, physical, and spiritual health – tripping our fight or flight response and actually shaving years off of our lives.

So, how can we overcome some of our personal obstacles and fears?
Continue reading “Face Your Own Personal El Guapos”

"Meditation – does it get easier with practice?"

This was the subject line in an email I received from a fairly new student of mine – one that had been meditating twice a day for about three weeks.

It’s a great question and one that students, friends and colleagues ask me often. There are plenty of days I ask myself the same thing.  My answer is that for me personally, some days are easier than others and we need to try to accept the present moment as it is – without trying to change it or make it different.

When you’re trying to create a new healthy habit like meditation, the first thing you need to do is accept that every meditation will be different.  This is true for anything we do in our lives.  In whatever we do, we have good days and bad days.  Some days at work our mind just isn’t as focused – we need to accept it without judging it good or bad.  If we play basketball, our timing may be off when we shoot the ball. Other days everything comes very easily – it flows and our shots seem to fall naturally.

Highs and lows are a part of life.  We need to accept them without holding on to the feeling that something isn’t as it should be.   Meditation is the same way –  some days we experience more mental turbulence than others.  As we practice meditating, and let go of trying to control or change things to make it better- over time, we’ll find that those highs and lows even out.   But, we’ll always be practicing.

After all, I call it my meditation “practice”… because I will always be practicing to accept what’s happening right now… as it is.

Peace IN.

-Andy

“Whatever the present moment contains, accept it as if you had chosen it.  Always work with it, not against it.” – Eckhart Tolle

"Breathe" Free Guided Meditation (audio)

“Smile, breathe and go slowly.”  – Thich Nhat Hanh

I hope you enjoy this free guided meditation that I created for you to help you stay centered in this turbulent time.  A Breath Awareness Meditation is one of the quickest ways to ground and center yourself.  Watching the breath in a meditation practice can help your mind let go of its often chaotic and turbulent thoughts.  The breath will fill you with invigorating energy and inspiration to be in this world, but not caught up in the drama around you.  I hope this helps!

 

Guided Meditation “Breathe” (10 min audio)


(MP3 download) Right click and “save link as…”  to download it to your computer

 

 

The Breakfast Club (Morning Mindfulness – Collicot Spring 2011)

When we focus attention on the inner landscape with our kids, we’re developing a more attuned relationship with our children. There’s a great scene in the movie “Jaws” where Chief Brody’s son is sitting at the dinner table (I think his name is Michael) and he’s carefully observing his dad’s behavior and posture. He starts slowly mimicking his dad until finally Chief Brody figures out what his son is doing – and decides to play along. Practicing mindfulness promotes integration with others through careful observation of the emotional and sensory experiences. There are all kinds of mirroring games that encourage heightened awareness of other people in a fun way. Continue reading “The Breakfast Club (Morning Mindfulness – Collicot Spring 2011)”