918. A Day in the Life: What’s It Really Like to Be a Certified Meditation and Yoga Instructor?
“The nice thing about my work is that I’m able to customize it to the client. If I have a corporate client who’s more conservative, we focus on how to help minimize stress and manage workload while also becoming more creative and experiencing more joy. On an individual basis, it’s very much what that individual needs. I’ve had pharmacists come to me because they’re reading the research and know that there is scientific proof of the value of meditation on mental health, physical health and our spiritual wellbeing. Other clients come to me who are on the opposite end of the spectrum, and want to meditate so they can become more intuitive or feel more spiritually connected. It really runs the gamut, which I enjoy.”
Natalie Creeden is a Certified Meditation Instructor who studied with Deepak Chopra at the Chopra Center for Wellbeing. She is also a Kundalini and Khalsa Way PreNatal Yoga Teacher and Reiki Master who integrates all her training to support people on their wellness journey. Natalie teaches in a way that both honors tradition and encompasses today’s need for mind, body, and spirit integration by sharing the power of ancient traditions in a modern, accessible and empowering format. Natalie believes meditation, mindfulness and yoga are our greatest tools for reducing stress and living our brightest, happiest, healthiest life.
The Most Impactful Turning Point?
“I had been working in the family business in a client-facing marketing role for a number of years. I enjoyed working with my family members and the work I was doing was gratifying on many levels; however, I travelled an awful lot and over time the stress began to take its toll on me. So a good friend of mine, someone who I actually used to dance with during my years of dancing competitions, took me to my first yoga class. Just based on alignment, movement of the body, breath work, transitions, and overall physical movement, I saw some real synergies between dance and yoga. And so I very quickly fell in love with yoga. The type of yoga we were practicing was silent. There was no music. Because it was silent, it was a very meditative practice. I noticed that I started to get better and better at managing the stress that I was experiencing in my life and my career. And I became more curious about all of that. That’s how I ended up getting into meditation, too, because I was looking for more ways to create calm so that I would not shift from calm and relaxed into stressed and anxious in the blink of an eye.”
The Most Powerful Lessons and Experiences?
1. “I danced competitively from the time I was 3 years old until I graduated high school. Dance put me so much in touch with my body on every level, which had a big influence on my later passion for yoga and meditation.”
2. “After earning my degree in finance and economics at UNC, Charlotte, I was accepted into a training program at Wachovia Bank, which gave me unparalleled exposure to every facet of the world of corporate America. The experience was extremely valuable and provided me with tools that have helped me throughout my career. After a couple of years, I realized that the corporate world was not for me.”
3. “While I was looking for my next job, a position opened up in my family’s successful 60-year-old paving business. I began running the accounting side of the business and then moved into a client-facing marketing role responsible for tens of millions of dollars in business. The work was challenging and I excelled at it, and it was good working with my family and extended family members for about 8 years. Ultimately the extensive travel wore me down, and after my husband and I married and wanted to start a family, I began exploring other options.”
4. “I had been practicing yoga and meditation for several years, so it was a natural progression for me to take the leap and become a meditation teacher. I went out to California to study with Deepak Chopra and his team at the Chopra Center for Wellbeing and there became a certified meditation instructor. I also became a certified yoga teacher and Reiki master and have been trained in pre-natal yoga.”
5. “My individual client base is 80% female ages 25 to 65. I also have several male clients–professional people who experience stress and anxiety in their life, and want to help improve their overall wellness with meditation. I also work with companies that have in their core values a wellness or work life balance initiative. They’ll bring me in to lead workshops or lead courses. It might be me coming in once a week for 12 weeks, once a month for 12 months or to give a 30-minute or hour-long talk at their conference.”
On Her Bookshelf
The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself, by Michael Singer
Meditation for Fidgety Skeptics: A 10% Happier How-to Book, by Dan Harris
Total Meditation: Practices in Living the Awakened Life, by Deepak Chopra
Stress Less, Accomplish More: Meditation for Extraordinary Performance, by Emily Fletcher
Connecting With Natalie Creeden
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