Wellness guru Anastasia Williams on starting a self-care journey

Wellness practitioner Anastasia Williams gives David Ho a few tips on intention setting, meditating and maintaining wellness

Wellness practitioner Anastasia Williams has come from Australia to The Upper House in Hong Kong for a 3-week exclusive residency. Williams has 20 years of extensive knowledge and practice, which combines yogic practices and wisdom, breath work, meditation, and universal divine spiritual wisdom, alongside integrative transformative coaching and healing energetic bodywork.

With a career spanning New York, Bali, Hong Kong and Sydney, Williams is eager to help those in Hong Kong continue their journey in 2024 with inspiration and a clear foundation. To learn more or make a booking, check out this link.

We’ve just entered the Year of the Wood Dragon. What tips do you have when it comes to intention setting?

For me intentions need to come from the heart. The electrical power of the heart signal is 60 times stronger than the electrical signal of the brain. The magnetic field of the heart is 5,000 times stronger than that of the brain. This makes the heart a more magnetic and clearer signal of aligned intention to our truest desires vs what the world projects upon us or what we make think is the most logical step. When we align our intention with our hearts desires vs what feels most rational or logical, or what we think will produce a certain result, we open ourselves to an array of opportunity and creative energy that we would not have accessed if we just thought what makes the most logical sense. This is not to say don’t be practical, we definitely want to weave that in but underneath the foundation of heart centred intentions.

How does one stay strong when it comes to adhering to these intention(s)?

It is important to know your WHY behind your intentions. So that your Why will keep you connected to your intentions in the midst of self-doubt, insecurity, comparison and fear. Ultimately bigger than your excuses. We all have clever ways of telling ourselves stories why something won’t work, or justify why we are not ready. So, when setting your intentions have a clear why in the foundation of your intentions to lean into in those moments where you become resistant to change, scared of transformation, growth and expansion or just having an everyday off day.

Like many, we have ambitious plans to make this our Year of Wellness. You offer quite a range of wellness workshops in your repertoire and during your tenure at Upper House. What are some beginner-friendly points you would suggest one begin to explore for their holistic wellness?    

Start small, make it doable and consistent and know your why. Consistency is the key towards any type of results-based change or transformation, growth or healing. Make it a personal goal that feels aligned with your needs versus a trending wellness hack. When it’s personal to you, it will have a stronger why, and most likely you will continue to show up for it until it becomes a more embodied or habitualised/familiar practice.

Habits are of course, key to maintaining said wellness. How can one recognise and repattern behaviour to break away from bad habits and cultivate good ones?

We are all human and we will all lose momentum. There will be a deeper reason to why we’re choosing a bad habit or a habit that is not serving us. It is important to look at the underlying reason why you’re choosing something. Compassionately hold space for yourself. Ask yourself “what would be a more empowered choice? What would the you that is aligned with your heart centred intentions choose?”. In short you recognise, compassionate observe, choose the new thought, feeling or action. Respond accordingly. And you repeat this again and again until that new habit has taken roots and the old bad habit is incrementally dissolving. It is never one and done. It takes time.

Meditation is one of those things we are often told to try. What should beginners know and prepare to start this practice?

I often think one of the common misconceptions about meditation is that you will stop thinking. That you should enter a blissful state. This is not true. Meditating is time spent in the presence of your own self. The thoughts and feelings will rise and fall. Your goal here is to simply observe, recognise and move into the presence of the next moment. Everyone is quite different when it comes to meditation, what is going to suit the beginning point of their journey thus why there are variations in a meditation practice. There are a breath-based meditation, mantra based meditation, guided meditation. I would also encourage people to start with shorter amounts of time. Like 3 to 5 minutes to start so that it feels achievable and every day you achieve it your relationship to the benefits strengthens.

Finally, what keeps you motivated on your own journey of wellness and self-care?

Knowing my WHY. I’m human I have days where I don’t want to do my daily practices. More often than not I give myself a good talking to and get on with it because in the midst of doing it you realise, you’re Why again. You remember how good you feel because of it. And then simultaneously I listen to my inner voice, and I will either shorten my practice or if I need a day off then so be it. I just don’t let days in a row go by without having that time to connect to my inner world, my inner voice, my inner needs. When the motivation wanes there is will be underlying reason, ask yourself what this is. Do not spend anytime berating yourself about it. At this stage of my journey, I am enamoured by the magnificence of our operating systems/body, mind. emotions and energy that I see it as a divine responsibility to take care of my whole self.

Also see: Manifesting love, luxury, and prosperity in 2024

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