Episode 8: Creating Your Sacred Space | Intentionality | Pinot Noir
In this episode of Chakras & Chardonnay, Maria is joined by Amanda Strojny. Amanda coaches Corporate professionals, Yoga Professionals and small business owners to grow financially, both personally and in their business and career, while staying rooted in their unique gifts. She is a dedicated teacher of the rules of money and provides her clients with a clear and concise Financial Roadmap to monetizing their skills. As a ERYT 200 Hour Registered Yoga Teacher and a Certified Transformational Coach, Amanda uses principle based coaching and yogic principles to establish financial balance and achieve clients financial goals.
Amanda takes us through the idea of creating a sacred space for our meditation or other self-care practices and stepping into it with intentionality. Intention is step 2 in the Take 5 Mindful Tasting Process. Maria takes us through the step and drops some fun tips and recommendations for an affordable central coast pinot.
Stay tuned till the end when Maria guides you through a relaxation practice to release neck tension.
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Maria Mayes: [00:00:00] Hello, welcome back to another episode of Chakras and Chardonnay. So I'm super excited to introduce to you Amanda Strojney today. I'm really grateful to have her here. I met her last year, maybe about six months ago when I. Um, was a guest on her beautiful podcast and I'm just so grateful that she's willing to come and be with us on Chakras Chardonnay today.
Amanda Strojny: Yes, thank you for having me. Yeah. Thank you for having me, Maria. I'm really excited to have this conversation with you excited for your show and what you're offering. It's really wonderful.
Maria Mayes: Well, let's just jump right in. So tell me about what wellbeing tip you want to serve up to the Chakras and Chardonnay listeners today.
Amanda Strojny: Yeah, there's so many and I think that in order to I found in my you know my path that it what's been most important is to find that that unique thing that works for you. And so I [00:01:00] love the idea I do love the idea of experimenting for people with like lots of different things until you find what is for you and one thing that I think of and would like to offer today is that idea of having.
Sort of a ritual behind your your spiritual practices and what I mean by that, you know We think of ritual sadhana as creating space that's yours and that has things that represent who you are whether it be a candle or Memento that's important to you or just something that brings you to your space that you know You can come into that space and you feel really connected to yourself and to your practice.
And I think that creates a sense of discipline in, in a meditation practice, even if, you know, it's five minutes, however long it is. But I think just having that to come back to, like having that space for you, um, Is is really beneficial and I found when I started my practices I've always had like some type of alter and even when I'm [00:02:00] traveling I find that to be really a beautiful offering because we do have busy lives and not everyone is in the same place all the time but even bringing a couple pieces with me when I'm traveling and setting those up in my space.
It really allowed me to know, okay, I have my practice, like I still have these pieces with me and though my environment is different and there's going to be different sounds and different distractions, I can come back to this place so I can get centered.
Beautiful. I love that. Can you expand on so since some of our listeners might not have started a meditation practice yet and the phrase altar might be new to them, can you expand a little bit more on on what that means for you and for you?
Absolutely. Yeah. I mean, I think there's so much that can be included in that. So for everyone, it's a little bit different. But, um, you know, an altar spaces, again, those that space that is set up in a way that has Some intention behind it is how I would say it. So it doesn't really matter as much what is on it.[00:03:00]
I think what's on it should be important to you should have intention behind it. And I think of it as a space that you you've blast as well. You know, so you've created this space, this altar and whatever you're keeping on it, those objects that are important to you, like a candle or or, um, yeah, You know, whatever it may be something, a picture of someone, um, something that has meaning to you and then blessing that in the sense of, you know, this is my space.
My energy is protected here and I'm, I'm coming into this space with real intention. And I know that there is the space for me to come to. So, um, I think, you know, one thing for people listening to is that it doesn't have to be this elaborate thing. You know, if you, if you don't, if you've never seen an altar before, anyone that's been to a yoga studio or.
You know, you might think, okay, I need to go out and get this huge display and set it up. And, and I really think, you know, you don't have to do that. You know, I've had times in my life where I've had it like on the corner of my desk, you know, or on a nightstand as [00:04:00] like a little place that I know is just my own.
So I think depending on your, your living situation and what you have going on, like you can set that up in different spaces and just knowing that it's there for you to come back to is really the most important part behind it. Mm
Maria Mayes: hmm. I love that. And I know I just was kind of giggling a little bit as you're saying it because, you know, you can imagine like the visuals that are going on, you know, in people's minds, even when I first heard the term like alter, like what, I don't have an alter, that's what you're talking about.
Right. So, but it can be so simple, right. It can be, you know, just those think about it as a, a cherished. Memento space, maybe, or, um, I love, uh, the example you gave when you're traveling, that you take some things that are really special to you, because I think as we move from our home environment and maybe just back up and say, okay, our home environments, that's an alter itself, right?
Our, our homes that we cultivate this environment [00:05:00] of, let's say, love of nurturing of support for our families. That energy that you've put into that, what Amanda's saying is, is create that in a space that's uniquely your own, your little quiet space that when you go to, it can really draw you in further.
So I think, yeah. Um, and it doesn't have to be left at home, right? We can take it with us. So yeah.
Amanda Strojny: Yeah. And I love what you said, those cherished. Objects are mementos for you. And another thing like you had mentioned is like your space in general is so important, you know, in your practices and to make that translation.
You know, when our space is clean and we have things in order, we feel that within ourselves, you know, when everything is chaotic and there's stuff everywhere. It's a distraction for the mind, so it's just something to consider, not to beat yourself up about because I know a lot of people listening, or you know, might think, okay, I'm messy and like she's saying, like, don't be messy because everyone's level of, [00:06:00] you know, cleanliness and what they choose to have is their own, but I think it's just something to offer yourself in your intentions and your practices to say.
Am I really distracted? Could it be my environment? Could it be something as simple as cleaning up a little space in my environment and seeing how that feels? And if I notice a difference, maybe then I can move on to another part of my home or another, you know, as, as a small step to start to take that action versus like the overwhelm that comes when you just feel like, okay, I'm, it's too chaotic.
I can't. fix everything at once. Oh, so
Maria Mayes: true. So true. And I'm again, kind of smiling from ear to ear because I'm like, Amanda came and saw my hallway right now where I've taken all the stuff out of my office and I'm going to organize it. So it's in the hallway and it's literally been there all week because I've been.
so busy with work that I haven't gotten to it. So that's my evening plan. And you just reignited the fire that I have to go finish that. I think that [00:07:00] that, that compassion for ourselves as we're going through the process, but also realizing that it's more than just aesthetics, there's an energetic component here.
And so I know one thing we talk a lot about, and then intention, I said, at the end of any meditation I do personally, or lead is lightness of being. And having that lightness of being for me is really hard when my surroundings are chaotic. And I feel the weightiness right now in my hallway every time I walk through it.
It's like, so, um, if you're thinking she was knowing what's in your hallway, she knows what's in your hallway.
Amanda Strojny: Right. And like you said, it's, it's, it's one of those things where everyone has a different degree. You know, for me. Like it's that reminder to yourself. Like for me, it's, that's something that's, I would say, easier for me to keep a clean place and have minimal things.
And I know that's not the case for everyone. So it's really understanding who you are, you know, and, and so that you can have compassion. Like you're saying, like, it's [00:08:00] been there for a week. That's okay. If I'm okay with it and I'm working through it and I'm, you know, not too. Compare yourself to what someone else is doing.
And that is so important with everything that we're talking about, you know, as far as like your meditation practice, your alter, these suggestions, let them evolve into your own way versus trying to replicate what someone else is doing and feeling like you can't meet that standard.
Maria Mayes: Yeah, I love that. And I think to that point.
If the word altar freaks you out, or if there's some like fear around that just based on the way you were raised or conditioning because for me there was initially I was like, let's build an altar. You know, that's right. That's not what you do right. Um, think about it as just creating a space where you can really honor you and like what brings you into the feeling of relaxation and feeling of joy and feeling of peace or whatever [00:09:00] you're looking to get out of that.
That time there. So maybe give us an example of like something that you would have in your
Amanda Strojny: altar. Yeah, for me and my altar, um, I do have like a, some, some statues, you know, that are important to me. I have, um, shells or rocks that I've collected from different places in the world. I've had, and these, and I'm just thinking over time too, things have shifted and changes, changed.
I've had objects from, like a note from a friend, you know, a letter from a loved one, uh, a picture of me as a child to come back to. Maybe a poem that I have resonated with. I'll have my vision board because I like to create a vision board every year. So I'll have that there and I can look at it all the time.
So I've had different variations of alters. And then so what I what I tend to do with that is I may have a bigger space. And then when I travel, I may take 1 or 2 objects, you know, depending on where I'm going. And then it's like, okay, this is the reminder for me of. Of these [00:10:00] pieces. So, um, and I also think like I was just reflecting on this for me.
It's almost like within my space now, because before when I was living by myself, which is interesting, like, I definitely had a bigger altar and like a dedicated room to my space, which, you know, some people may be like, that is very overwhelming. And now that I'm, you know, married and living with someone, Um, I noticed that I'll have like small altars in different parts of the home, you know, so like I said, like on my nightstand, I just have a few special stones and, you know, that are lined up and so I can come back to that and then in another area in the house, I may have, you know, the same thing, a couple of crystals.
And maybe just something little. So I think that could be a, you know, something that you could incorporate. Um, if you find yourself being like, I'm not going to have my own dedicated space, it's just not possible for me because of the logistics of where I'm living. And, um, and I think it's, you know, you, it's also a beautiful way to share with those that you love in your space, [00:11:00] you know, whether someone's aware or not, you know, they may see that and, and be asking questions, you know, if you have children or a partner.
And that's a beautiful way to integrate and to, you know, just, just allow people to, to be open to it. I love that. And
Maria Mayes: I love that even that you mentioned that, that first of all, all the things that you mentioned, I have in different parts of my different little, you know, maybe I've never even thought of them as altars in, in prior years, but, but they truly are.
They're just, they're, they're sacred objects and a space to have those sacred objects to remind me of my wholeness, basically. And so I love the idea of the nightstand. I have a little box by my nightstand too. And I've got like very similar, some special rocks from trips, some pictures, homes, so just for the audience, just really think about what brings you back to you, that's.
The jazz we're throwing down right now, right? Yeah, [00:12:00] exactly. And how does that then draw, um, like the students that you're working with, how does that draw them further into the teaching? Can you talk to that?
Amanda Strojny: Yeah, I mean, I think it's, it's the, the idea that you're, you're creating a space. Space. Every time you go into a practice, such as meditation that you have some intention behind it.
And that really is, I think, the key behind any of the work that anyone's doing. You know, we talk about work in quotations like on yourself, whatever, the, the journey in life of self awareness and consciousness, you know, it is. Having intention having intention because we can be in meditation and be like, I meditate every day.
Like I telling people we meditate every day and there's not that intention behind it. So that is between you and yourself. There isn't anyone that you need to prove that to or explain it to or. When you notice that that's more of the ego coming in, but it really is to, I think, have that that moment where [00:13:00] you really go in to yourself to say, like, I'm I have this intention.
This is my focus. And you're setting that foundation for yourself of really. Trusting yourself essentially and, and, and working on the, the, the self within you to say, you know, I'm dedicating this time and I'm allowing whatever comes in in this time to, to be what it is, but I'm really focused on it versus just allowing it to be like, okay, whatever happens happens type idea.
So I think it's, it's important to have that. Um, And I will say that, you know, things always shift and change. So there, if there's people out there that are listening that are really excited. You know, in these practices and maybe say, like, I had an altar and now I don't, you know, or I had this and now I don't.
I think that's a beautiful thing to, to be aware of for yourself too, because not everything is going to serve you forever. And I think when I started my practices, you know, I always, I felt [00:14:00] like I'd learn one thing and it would be so exciting for me. And I'd be like, Oh, I have to have this forever. And then as things shift and change, like I said, I don't have this type of altar I had before.
And I've learned to be like, that's okay, I've changed, you know, what I require has changed. And so having that compassion for yourself to to say, like, Things are going to shift and change, but if you have intention behind it, that's really, I think, the thing, the thread that will carry you through in the practices and is so important, um, for all of that work.
Maria Mayes: that. Yeah, that, that's such a beautiful way to put it in terms of just bringing that intentionality into not only practice, but the space. where you're about to practice. And it might be like you said, multiple spaces to, um, you know, I can't think of a term, but there's a, there's a term there's a regarding the neuroscience behind [00:15:00] our sense memory, dropping us into that state of deeper relaxation.
And so, um, for example, I, I'm really sensitive to smell, so I don't do a lot of, um, I'm very particular about the incense that I can tolerate. And so there's this very particular. Um, really soft Japanese incense that I burn a little bit, uh, most days when I'm meditating, and that scent, all I have to do is smell that scent, and it will trigger, uh, A chemical response and an activation in my nervous system to remind me that, Hey, it's time to chill out.
It's time to drop. So, or for some people, essential oils, a little lavender oil, same thing, right? That neuroception I think is the word. It's just, yeah, that's how my brain works. It's like talk, talk, talk, and then it'll come up. So, um, so that's such a beautiful thing and colors and, you know, The sacredness of just everything that you're, you're sharing.
It doesn't have to be anybody else's way because it's all [00:16:00] about what makes you feel more you.
Amanda Strojny: Right. Yeah.
Maria Mayes: Awesome. Awesome. Well, anything else along the lines of creating a sacred space that we didn't cover? Um,
Amanda Strojny: no, I think we covered it. I think I really just want to highlight that people can, you know, figure, find their own way into it, you know, and be creative with it and be open to it and try different things and see how they feel.
That's my biggest, you know, advice, I guess, you know, to people is that try it out, see how it feels, you know, give yourself the freedom to say, Okay. This doesn't work for me or this does because that's you really tapping into yourself to know the difference, you know, to not be like, Oh, someone told me to do this.
So I'm doing it and I'm going to struggle through. It's like what works for you. What what it feels good to you. Like. And know that if it doesn't feel good, you can try something new and you may have to try a lot [00:17:00] of things before something feels good. So don't get discouraged. I love
Maria Mayes: that. I love that. I mean, I, I tried meditating in a lot of different forms in a lot of different ways for a lot of different years until I came home to what worked for me.
So I love that thought of staying curious and just seeing, um, just keep trying and staying curious.
Amanda Strojny: Thank you
Maria Mayes: much for offering. Yeah. And that's such, of course, such, such a fun thing to, I mean, just our creativity, you know, evoking the activation of the sacral chakra and getting creative and just being inspired in that space too.
So that's a great thing to share with the listeners. So I'd like to pivot if you're ready to pivot into a conversation about wine and just ask you. Yeah. Is there any particular wine that you enjoy? And if so, tell me about
Amanda Strojny: it. Yeah, it's so interesting because I, you know, I, I am not a big drinker and I've actually had an interesting story with alcohol that I'll share as far as like, you [00:18:00] know, I was never really a big drinker, but I was in, um, you know, a long term relationship with someone that was and I, and I was able to observe just how intense that was, you know, and, and the addiction piece of it.
And so when I ended that, I also chose to stop drinking for about four, four or five years in my mid thirties. And, um, it was really interesting because I never, like I said, I never really felt like I had an addiction, but it was more how to. navigate the world when you didn't have alcohol, navigate social situations when you didn't have it.
And feeling that uncomfortability in myself in the beginning, and then growing more and more comfortable with it to say, to say no and, and be able to say no and feel good about that. And then, you know, I decided. Maybe I want to here and there. And I think that that again, it comes back to what we were just previously talking about, giving myself permission to change my mind and to do things in the way [00:19:00] that I want to with intention.
So for me, when it comes to alcohol and drinking, it's like, I I'm in the same place I am with that altar that I talked about where it's like, what's my intention here. Why am I doing it? What, what is the reason behind it? And so when I make that choice, if it's like celebrating something, or I'm like out to dinner and I want to do that, I'm really conscious about it, that, you know, I'm, this is my intention.
I want to enjoy this. And so it takes away. It's like that all or nothing goes away because I think when I stopped drinking, I was really like, I'm not drinking, you know, like, and I was adamant about it. And then it was more of that leading me into that question of like, well, what do I really want? You know, like, maybe I do want to do it sometimes.
Is that okay? Can I be okay with that? Or am I going to judge myself for doing it again? So I just wanted to share that because it's, it's been an interesting, just like. weaving in and out. And I think, um, you know, it's that I've, I'm okay with that. And I think it's, it can be empowering to, to be [00:20:00] okay wherever you're at, whether you choose to, or don't choose to, you know, like what works for you and with intention.
Maria Mayes: Absolutely. And, and you're really speaking to taking your power back by stepping into it with self awareness and intention, which is beautiful. And, um, so it's, so I love that you brought up intention and that's whole. Wait, we've throughout this whole conversation because actually the second step in a five step mindful tasting process that I teach.
Um, first we arrive, so we become present and self aware, you know, doing some breath work or whatever it might be. Um, but then after we fully arrived, then asking what's the intention behind this sip. Like that. And just that process of asking that intention for me personally in my journey from, you know, self medicating to meditating and now being able to mindfully enjoy line is, it's so powerful because it can take us out of that unconscious just, you know, throwing back a [00:21:00] glass to.
No, what really what's my intention? Is it to enjoy the day, have fun with friends, enjoy the flavors? Is it to numb pain or anxiety? And so I found myself even, um, asking that question, deciding, Oh, well, that's not what I want to do right now. So I'm not going to have that glass of wine because my intention.
Wasn't one that was going to nurture and build chronic and yeah, that's beautiful. So, um, that I appreciate you sharing that personal story of how. That self-awareness of stepping out of it, which I've been there before too, where it's just like, no, right now I choose not to drink at all or however. Right, right.
And then, yeah, the choice of am I not drinking because I told myself I wasn't gonna drink? Is it because that's what I'm told not to do? Or am I choosing to stand on my power and say, today I'm gonna do this.
Amanda Strojny: Exactly. I love it. Yeah. Yeah. And so with your question, you know, I've, I've traveled to Italy [00:22:00] and, and had like amazing red wine.
I would say that, you know, I really have a, I love a good red wine, like a Pinot Noir or um, Yeah, something like that. But I also, like, I don't, I don't really care for white wines. And it's interesting that when I do, it's more of like a sweeter variety, like a Riesling that I would go to. Um, and so I love the idea of like thinking about wine too in, in with food, you know, because I think eating to me.
It's such a beautiful experience. It's so that to me too, as well, I just recently had a friend visit here and we went to this restaurant and had this amazing meal. And I remember saying to her at the end of the meal, I'm just like, it's so nourishing to like eat such delicious food, you know, and, and the same thing with wine, you know, and share that with the food and to have the flavor palette.
Like melding together. And I'm like, it's just such a, a joyous experience, you know, to, when you do that, when you really nourish yourself with things that. That feel good and you're, you're, you [00:23:00] have intention behind it and you're noticing it and you're not rushing and you're not just like, you know, distracted.
It really is a different experience. And I think that both can be done in that way. And when we, you know, we see, I think other cultures have a better understanding of that, you know, in Europe, they definitely take their time and slow down when it comes to eating and drinking and, um, you know. But I think it can be like that, that experience that you enjoy it and that it's, you know, a connection of people and enjoying the moment.
Maria Mayes: Totally. I mean, what if we started every meal with just asking, what's my intention with consuming this food? What if every time we hit social media, we asked ourselves, what's my intention before the scroll, right? I mean, there's so much power in that much. Yes.
Amanda Strojny: I love that.
Maria Mayes: That's easier said than done, right?
Right? But we're all in the process. And that's what really drew me to Amanda, too. It's just, you've got such a beautiful spirit and such a just honest, authentic You know, [00:24:00] ability to share your journey in a way where it really liberates others to do the same. So I really thank you.
Amanda Strojny: Thank you so much. Thank you for having me and for sharing.
This has been a fun conversation and I hope people listening, you know, can can find that unique way in, you know, when they listen of just what's what's going to work for me and have fun trying it. Have fun trying different things. Enjoying the journey,
Maria Mayes: right? I love it. Right. Exactly. Amanda, where can people find you so that they can get a hold of you, learn more about the services that you offer, and maybe, um, ask you how to, um, improve their space to get more into it?
Amanda Strojny: absolutely. So, I also, I teach meditation and spiritual practices, and also I do financial coaching. So, for me, I believe, you know, the business and spirituality is, is important. a melded effort. When we're in business, we really require a spiritual practice first. And so I, when I work with people, I integrate both on this way of helping them find some more ease and flow within their [00:25:00] finances and to not feel like that could be holding them back.
And that does incorporate, you know, having a spiritual practice on having intention, understanding certain things to move yourself through. And so I work one to one with clients in that space. Um, I also have my own podcast called untapped power, where I talk to people in the yoga community, um, as a source of collaboration to share their stories, whether it be in, you know, meditation, spirituality.
And then I also share some episodes related to business development and how to work your way through as an entrepreneur. So that's been a really fun space for me. And we have a community untapped power. net you can join for free. And get access to resources and join our mailing list. And then I also have a paid course online called spiritual money mindset.
It's a self paced course. If you're just like looking to get in the door, um, and if you're interested in working together, I offer a free 30 minute call just to get started and at [00:26:00] least identify one of your, your blocks in your, in your financial space. So those are sort of the ways people can Find me at amandastroni.
com. That's my website. Um, and like I said, join untappedpower. net or on social media. Um, it's astroni on Instagram and then amandastroni on Facebook. Yeah. I'll have
Maria Mayes: all those good details in the show notes. I'm highly. Thank you. Love your newsletter. Love all the work you're doing. Thank you. Thanks again so much for coming on and sharing your wisdom with us.
Yeah. Thank you. Thank
Amanda Strojny: you for having me. Thank you for holding the space and and the work that you're doing. I really am grateful for our connection to it's been really sweet. And I'm just I'm just grateful that you're here doing what you're doing. So thank you. Likewise.