01 Mixed Martial Arts
I was involved in Mixed martial arts competitions from about 24, having competed and trained in The Philippines, Taiwan, China, Thailand and The UK, holding a 5-4 record in MMA, 1-0 record in Muay thai, also competing in multiple Brazilian jiujitsu competitions, winning medals in the Bangkok open and currently holding a purple belt.
I think I originally got into MMA to overcome fear of conflict, but also because I was angry. I think it helped me channel my aggression, and while it did give me a lot of structure and form, it wasn't until I started to do the inner work, therapy, meditation, energy psychology that I started to integrate those feelings properly and understand a bit about what deeper self acceptance actually felt like.
It continues to be a journey.
I started doing yoga around 2013. Practicing Hatha and hot yoga, then moving onto Ashtanga, its a practice I move in and out of depending on the other physical activities I'm doing, but the practice of stretching has stayed close throughout the years as a way to rehabilitate old injuries and ward off new ones. I also find much value in the philosophies that underpin yoga - union with all aspects of yourself. It brings up more than I had bargained for when I first got into it and is a useful ally in shadow work.
04 Breathwork & Inner dance
I was initiated into breathwork in 2011 by a kundalini yoga teacher. My first experience was so noteworthy I began to pay a lot of attention to the breath, focusing on circular breathing, rebirthing and various pranayama techniques. Since then I also studied the Wim Hof Method, amongst other forms of hyperventilation, and it's opposite, hyp-o-ventilation with the buteyko method.
I ran into inner dance in 2012 and have been using it as a therapeutic tool since then. Inner dance and breathwork have helped me get in touch with hard to reach emotions and deep rooted emotional trauma, helping me self regulate while processing stuff through the body.
A natural synthesis between inner dance and breathwork was born around 2014
I've been holding inner dance workshops since 2012, breathwork classes and facilitator trainings around the world since 2014. For a list of past and upcoming retreats you can see our services page.
You can read more about breathwork here.
I did my first 10 day silent retreat vipassana course in 2013. I've since been on three more courses including service periods. We also held a vipassana style retreat at our project the energy school in Switzerland. I practice vipassana, metta and some other meditation techniques pretty much daily. I find it extremely grounding and centering, it's become a staple part of my life and mental health care. I can't imagine life now without it.
05 Energy psychology
Since 2009 I was learning different energy psychology modalities with my friend Sebastien Van Der Schrier of Social Anxiety Solutions, to affect change in the brain through the body. I originally began using it to enhance my own sports performance with MMA then moved more towards working with anger issues, MMA had been a way to channel my own anger issues and in the eco village I began working with people on tapping into their aggression through the boxing pads as a gateway to their feelings, that led me to working more with trauma and included a couple of visits to disaster zones - After the typhoon Yolanda in the Philippines in 2013 and after the earthquake in Nepal in 2015 - to work with experts in the field.
Among the modalities I've studied are EFT Tapping (Emotional Freedom Technique), Psych-K, Matrix re-imprinting, The emotion code, PET & SET (Provocative Energy Techniques & Simple Enrergy Techniques) TRE (trauma release exercises), NLP and Non Violent Communication. Lately I have been reading up on and practicing with the work of Somatic Experiencing and was recently qualified as an Embodiment coach.
Energy Psych has been invaluable in my own development, helping me interact with my subconscious and re-imagine my life experiences, giving movement to stuck energies along the way.
I now use a blend of these techniques along with meditative practices and breathwork in my practice as a coach for the purposes of emotional release and self acceptance.
06 Physical challenges
I enjoy getting outdoors and testing myself - cold water swimming and cold showers have been part of my routine since 2016, I find great benefit in them for both body and mind, particularly in staving off depression, which is something I've had to work at over the years. In 2013 I completed a bike ride from Spain to Italy that took about a month and taught me many things. And more recently did David Goggins 4x4x48 Challenge - Running four miles every four hours for 48 hours. I find there's something for me in the physicality and overcoming of obstacles, it's like an embodied experience of what you're capable of. Although I feel more balanced with it nowadays. I think as I've become more sensitive and in touch with the body I've been less inclined to push myself to the unhealthy places I did in my youth, using extremes, exercise and adrenaline as a way to self punish and avoid dealing with my feelings or underlying trauma.
Also being in nature - I once spent two months living in a tent on top of a mountain in the Philippines and found being immersed in nature like that great for harmonizing natural rhythms.
I enjoy other outdoor activities such as surfing, snowboarding, camping, long distance running, diving and hiking. I've often felt a natural pull towards trying new things.
07 Renovations and woodworking
The first project I was invited onto was the construction of a bamboo large hut and platform in the mountains of northern Thailand in 2010, this was what inspired me to go to back to the Philippines in 2012 to learn mud house building (where I also discovered inner dance).
In 2017 I was invited to work on a project in Switzerland - the building of a yoga/meditation retreat center to be named "energy school", renovated from and old 4 story chalet. Following this I decided to try my hand at a camper conversion and turned a 2013 Vauxhaull Vivaro, an old joiners van, into a stealth camper. Then last year at my sister and brother in laws during lockdown, I kept myself busy by turning a shed into a sauna.
These projects have been immensely gratifying and something I want to continue to develop my skill with in the future.