As a Yoga Instructor I receive a lot of questions from friends, students, and people that I meet on a day-to-day basis. Despite Yoga’s increasing popularity and the tremendous amount of media attention it has been receiving, there is still a great deal of mystery surrounding this ancient practice. I decided that I wanted to reach out to people I admire in their respective fields to dig a little deeper, find some new answers, and new information about yoga. I conducted this third interview with Peg Donahue of Feng Shui Connections. Feng Shui Connections is a conscious, continually evolving and environmentally focused business. Drawing on the universal principles of feng shui, quantum physics, energy, Bau-BiologieTM, intuition, and intention. Peg helps you align the energy of your home and/or workplace with your goals. I have been studying with Peg for a while now and I am consistently amazed at how powerful and effective the principles and application are. She is an extremely knowledgeable and inspiring teacher and I am looking forward to continuing my work with her on and off my mat.
AS: Please tell me a little bit about your first introduction to yoga and how that practice has evolved for you?
PD: I began my practice with Richard Hittleman’s Yoga 28 Day Exercise Plan when I was in high school many years ago. This easy to follow book taught me some of the basics of yoga and the importance of breathing, mindfulness, and an overall healthy lifestyle. My practice has evolved over the years to participating in classes and studying with teachers to expand what I learned on my own. It is a lifetime commitment.
AS: Since beginning my work with you, I am fascinated by the similarities in our work. I would like to talk a little bit about how feng shui and yoga complement one another. How has the practice of both of these modalities been advantageous to you?
PD: Everything in life is connected in one way or another. Feng shui is the practice of arranging your environment to enhance your life. It is all about chi flow. The objective is to attract positive energy to your space and allow it to meander throughout, cultivating life enhancing vitality and overall good fortune. Yoga is also about chi flow … the breath of life through your body. By drawing the breath in and bringing it deep within yourself you tap into your inner power and wisdom. Each of the postures stretches and assists me in strengthening my muscles while also developing flexibility and mindful awareness.
One of the principles of feng shui is that your space mirrors yourself and holds patterns of what happens in your life. Yoga is all about your inner and outer self as well. By connecting to your breath you become more conscious of what is transpiring within. Yoga empowers you to move with grace and ease, leaving stress and strain behind. Feng shui practices help you to arrange your outer environment to create more ease and flow in your life.
Both practices help me to navigate daily life with a positive, life-affirming approach.
Yoga continually teaches me to change what I can and to accept wherever I am on any given day. Working with “what is” empowers me to do what I can. Some days the stretches and movements come easily and other days my body feels less flexible. A very nice aspect of yoga is that of a personal practice. There is no competition. You do what feels right on any given day.
AS: Yoga practice makes room for and moves energy in the body, allowing the practitioner to move towards the removal of emotional and physical blockages. Feng shui does the same for your home, property, and business.
Do you feel that your yoga practice assists you with your work? How has it helped you with other aspects of your well-being?
PD: Yes, my yoga practice does assist me with my work. First, it helps me to feel great. Second, as energy moves through my body, it is also reflected in my space. When I slow down or get stuck, I see the patterns in my space as well … such as clutter that needs release.
As it relates to work, both practices bring much synchronicity to my life. Things just happen. They move right along. I might be thinking about someone and then the phone rings or an email pops into my box. Often when I am ready for a new client, one emerges.
Yoga brings balance to my body and to my life. Long ago it taught me to be at peace with myself and to accept things as they come. Acceptance creates space for opportunity and change…because you are not expending energy pushing things away.
On a physical level yoga helps me keep my body flexible. Both of my parents had arthritis and it limited them beginning about the age I am now. My mother had trouble raising her arms above her head. The posture clasp is a stretch I do regularly to stretch my arms and shoulders, something my mom could not do. My dad had both hips replaced multiple times also beginning at my age. I have no signs or symptoms of what my parents experienced. So on one level yoga is helping me to move beyond inherited family patterns.
AS: Often times we work with clientele that have very specific needs that they are working on or a particular outcome that they desire. In these cases, do you feel that it is beneficial for us to work with them privately as opposed to in a group setting?
PD: Yes. Both group and private settings are beneficial. Group settings are effective for teaching and sharing basic information that everyone can benefit from. Private sessions enable you and I to target specific areas of interest in a compassionate and confidential manner. To paraphrase Eckhart Tolle, we walk around carrying our “pain body.” All of us have life challenges. We grow as we accept our challenges and move through them with grace and ease. Both yoga and feng shui are very effective means for helping people to shift their lives from the inside out and outside in.
Did this interview answer some questions for you? Is there additional information that would like to know? Please let me know.