Extraordinary Lives - Zoë Stone

My name is Zoë and I live in Alton, Hampshire.

I share my time between my family and either teaching Hatha Yoga, Yin Yoga and Yoga Nidra classes locally or working as an Administrator for a lovely busy clinic at an NHS Community Hospital.

My love for yoga began when finding so much more than physical postures (asanas) on the mat. Learning the importance of our mind, body and soul connection gave me a deeper understanding of yoga and also my inner self. I completed Hatha Yoga Teaching Training RYTT 200 hrs and Yin Yoga 40hrs in 2018 both accredited with Yoga Alliance Professionals.

I love the community feel of attending a yoga class and hearing how yoga has enriched peoples lives in so many ways. Mental health is a real focus for me as I am a naturally anxious person and love sharing a Yoga practice which helps to reduce the effects of anxiety, depression and PTSD among others.

Ah, Matcha! I love OMGMatcha tea! This is very new to me and was recommended by a dear friend. I love the process and the ritual of making this precious cup of ‘me time’.

I have a mug purely for my Matcha tea which allows me to recognise the ‘down time’ and carve out a conscious moment to pause and bring body and mind as one. I absolutely love the refreshing taste knowing that’s it’s full of antioxidants too.

1. If you could choose to do anything for a day, what would it be?

I would love to spend time in Punta Mona in Costa Rica.  Such a beautiful lush jungle with the exotic beaches.  There is so much to do there, so many adventures to experience.  The community looks so inviting as they have a shared passion for caring for the earth and finding better ways to live.  I heard that they like a little yoga too!

2. Who’s the person you’d most like to share a cup of matcha with and why?

I would love to share a cup of Matcha tea with the Dali Lama to hear about how his dedication to service has shaped the world around him.  There is so much work to do to encourage kindness and empathy in a world which seems to be governed by fear or anger.  I would love to hear about his journey. 

3.How has a failure or apparent failure set you up for later success?

There are lessons everywhere in life if we look close enough for sure. 

Not needing to be a spiritual person, we are able to reap benefits from core teachings related to Yin and Yang.  Our lives can be very unbalanced if we live very ‘Yang’ lifestyles by taking on too much, hitting the ground running and living our lives under pressure all of which can be detrimental to our well-being.   Perfect timing with the season changing, I have learned to focus on a more ‘Yin’ approach by taking moments to breathe in between different responsibilities/activities, enjoying the ritual of making Matcha tea and being mindful in drinking it’s freshness and generally slowing down and allowing moments to just absorb. 

The success here is taking time for more self care improving my well-being, advantageous for myself and all around me plus inspiring others to do the same.

4. In the last five years, what new belief, behaviour, or habit has most improved your life?

Conscious breathing exercises (Pranayama) have brought profound changes in how I respond to feeling overwhelmed or experience anxiety.  These moments can be a small gift to myself throughout the day and bring a moment of calm and presence...nobody notices.  Pranayama helps to move physical and emotional blockages allowing Prana (energy) to flow freely. Conscious breathing exercises are also a wonderful way to begin or close the day, moments to observe physical sensations, express gratitude or work on the inner experience of self.

5. What is the best piece of advice you could give someone?

Speak, think and move with love and kindness in your heart.

6. What would you sing at Karaoke night?

Eeek, I'm not sure that I could choose just one!  I absolutely love the Foo Fighters so let’s go with ‘Best of You’.

www.zoestoneyoga.com

woman doing yoga pose