Zuzanna von Salm
Who better to help us ring in the New Year than a meditation teacher who knows a thing or two about making (and more importantly, keeping!) meaningful resolutions.
How long have you been meditating and how long have you been teaching meditation?
I have had my personal twice-daily meditation practice for almost 8 years, and have been teaching for the last 4 years.
If your work life involved something different before, what precipitated the career switch?
I was a fashion model before. My career in the fashion industry was wonderful and I will forever be grateful for it, but it did not come without its dark side. I started working and traveling too early (at 15) and the pressures associated with being a model affected my mental health tremendously. I was struggling with eating disorders, depressive states, and panic attacks. At the age of 26 I decided that I needed to help myself and started experimenting with various healing modalities. A regular meditation practice was something that helped me the most, but I would have never guessed that one day I would be teaching it.
Why is meditation so important/helpful?
Because the real pandemic we live in is a pandemic of stress and disconnection. To me, meditation is the simplest way of taking care of our mental health. It's no longer optional. In this day and age it is as important to our health as brushing our teeth.
Naturally, our theme for January is "New Year Reset". It's a time for setting resolutions/intentions/all of those things we talk a lot about at the beginning of the year that often fall away a few months in. What advice do you have for us on sticking to our intentions?
My first advice is to meditate! It will help with getting crystal clear about the resolutions or changes needed, as well as with the motivation to implement those changes. My second piece of advice would be to get comfortable with being uncomfortable, to be aware of the fact that establishing new habits is usually uncomfortable at first and our bodies and minds, initially, like to resist the changing pattern.
What are your personal intentions for 2023?
Some of my personal intentions that I can share (many of them I'd like to keep to myself) are: establishing a habit of waking up with the Sun so I can maximize that quiet time for my practices before my family wakes up; continuing to work on being grounded and centered, responsive and not reactive; watching my anger and not giving in to it; inviting more professional collaborations (with brands and other practitioners) because they bring me so much joy; hosting at least 2 Ceremonia Meditation retreats in 2023; expanding my skill set; and allowing myself more time to rest and not feeling guilty about it.
Can you tell us a bit about the Full Moon Gathering you just hosted at Canoe Place Inn & Cottages this past Friday? What did the ceremony entail?
I can't tell you the details- you'll have to please come join me and experience a ceremony for yourself in the future! All I can tell you is that it is a monthly gathering of up to 25 women that always involves meditation, healing rituals, music, movement, creativity, connection, lots of laughter...and delicious snacks!
For those who are local and might be interested in attending a future Full Moon Gathering, when will you host the next and how can we sign up? The next one will be on February 5th. You can sign up on my website https://ceremoniameditation.com/moon-gatherings.
How has being a mom informed the work that you do? We understand you teach hypnobirthing: tell us a little bit about that, please.
Becoming pregnant with my first daughter was a bit of a surprise and, as I was looking for answers, someone recommended the HypnoBirthing course. All of my questions (and more) were answered in the 5 sessions of the course and it gave me the confidence that I needed to have a successful unmedicated home birth. After completing the course I remember thinking, "Every woman needs to do this!" and soon after that I added HypnoBirthing to my teachings. It's a course that educates and empowers women in such a special (and often very confusing) time of their lives. I believe that empowering mothers-to-be and mothers is an easy way to make a positive impact on the world. Just think about it: if we raise conscious children, we can make the world a better place in just one generation. I used HypnoBirthing to have an unmedicated, natural, hospital birth with my twins and that was another proof that the HypnoBirthing philosophy really works. Now I see being a mother of 3 as the craziest spiritual practice I've ever experienced.