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The second episode of the new Netflix series The Goop Lab features a small group of people plunging into a freezing lake and overcoming various fears and anxieties in the process, encouraged all the way by a curious character named Wim Hof. Also known as The Iceman, the 60-year-old Dutch extreme athlete has become famous – and the subject of scientific study – for his ability to withstand extreme temperatures by using his mind to...

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I am a baby when it comes to meditation. I’m not a guru, I haven’t been to an ashram and I’m not a member of a contemplative Eastern religion.  What I am is a person who has struggled with sleep for well over a decade and didn’t even really know why until I started regularly doing guided meditations.   By day, I’m a teacher. I teach middle school English and my day starts ferociously early.  I’m...

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Laila Saif’s road to Illuminations Abu Dhabi began when, as a hard-working executive, she googled Theta Healing and came across the original wellbeing center in Dubai.  Intrigued, she soon headed up the highway from her home in Abu Dhabi to investigate. She didn’t know it then, but it was a move which she says ended up completely transforming her life.  “At the time I was always stressed, with a lot of suppressed frustrations and anger and...

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I didn’t always crave sugar or feel shame when I ate it. When I was a toddler, my mother used to leave me a little pile of raisins or marshmallows on the kitchen table so I could grab a snack when I wanted. By all accounts I hate them sparingly and happily. When I was a little older, she’d hand me a little bag of soft banana candies from the corner store when we went...

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When the increasingly popular field of life coaching took root in the UAE, it remained largely inaccessible to one of the UAE’s largest groups: people who speak only Arabic.  Moza Al Hameli, a 43-year-old Emirati life coach, aims to change all that.  She has just launched her Abu Dhabi-based training academy Azher, which offers sessions and workshops for those who seek to live a more meaningful life – with adjustments in tone, translation and, of...

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Set a new goal for fitness, figure out how to spend more time with the people you love and learn how to love yourself more by reading this month’s new wellness books.  The Book of Awakening (20th Anniversary Edition) The Book of Awakening: Having the Life You Want by Being Present to the Life You Have was first published in 2000 but shot to the top of bestseller lists when it got  Oprah Winfrey’s endorsement...

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Neli Merris has been a mainstay on the Abu Dhabi yoga scene since she first arrived 12 years ago. Now the Bulgaria-born yoga teacher, soundworker and mother-of-two has joined forces with two Emirati sisters to open Seven Wellness on Reem Island.  “I taught one of the sisters yoga and it’s how we got together, but they had been working on this project for two years before I met them and so it was all in...

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#HOWSWEETITISNT is a series of articles, infographics and videos, where livehealthy.ae takes a closer look at scientific and anecdotal evidence telling us why and how the sugar we love to eat is hurting our health – and what we need to do about it.  I do love coffee, and enjoy one on most days, although there was a time when I thought I’d have to say goodbye to my daily cup of caffeine-fuelled good vibes. ...

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It can be hard to find a community in Abu Dhabi, let alone a sense of calm or contentment. There are so many different cultures to navigate and as in any other city, everyone is in a rush. That leaves little time – or energy – for healing and personal development, even if people are hungry for it. Enter the Lightworkers Abu Dhabi, a group of 90 women and men who have joined forces to boost...

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Before I get into why a naysayer like me tried Reiki, I’ll begin with a statement of fact: I am hopeless at yoga, pilates, meditation and all the rest of it. If I don’t sweat, I don’t consider it a workout. And if I’m not able to tip the contents of my mind into a mental landfill, I don’t consider myself meditated.  I’m not your prime candidate for anything related to holistic healing, energy tapping...

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“You have to have the courage to be disliked,” says Carolyn Cowan. The 59-year-old London-based psychotherapist and relationship therapist, whose career has spanned more than three decades and many fields (including fashion design and photography), talked about self-love and self-care during a recent visit to Life’n One. She’ll be back at the Dubai wellbeing centre, founded in 2014 by Eda Gungor and Seva Bhagti Kaur, twice next year, too.  She’s answering my question: “How do we...