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Sydney Campos On How Yoga & Reiki Changed Her Life

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Tell us about your journey to becoming a holistic practitioner?

It all started with getting my first Reiki energy healing session a few years ago. I was feeling really heavy and I had this feeling like I was carrying emotions around that weren't my own. I was introduced to a healer in Brooklyn who shared the practice with me and after my treatment I felt a profound lightness and relief - like I was cleared of this weight I didn't even know was holding me down so intensely for quite a while. I started to work with that healer as a holistic life coach and she supported me in making all sorts of great changes and stepping up to big goals. That experience really helped solidify this feeling I had actually always had but perhaps had never been ready to really acknowledge - that I too was a healer and deeply felt this desire to help other people by sharing all the experiences I've gone through that have helped me grow and thrive. I've actually always felt a deep responsibility to helping others, but I always understood it to have to happen on a massive scale and a tangible one or structural one at that. For example, for the longest time I thought I would be a civil rights attorney - and even when I was quite young I had dreams of being president. I thought I would help people and have the most impact by changing laws and helping establish more equality and justice.

Through my own healing journey I've come to live by the belief that true change starts with the individual and is an inside job. When one person heals and turns their light on and shines the way they're truly meant to, they actually become part of a huge ripple effect that in turn helps everyone else that comes into their path. I love this image of one by one, by healing ourselves and living our best lives - we are all helping each other in small ways that add up and multiply and spread. So that's a long way of saying - I was eventually called to get certified in Reiki and Akashic Record Reading and also obtained my health coaching certification with the Institute for Integrative Nutrition. I also recently completed my 200 hour yoga teacher training with Laughing Lotus in NYC, a dream I've had for a long time. And everything is so connected - all of the modalities I practice and share all aim to help support people in connecting with their inner most truth and vision so they can live their best lives possible. And the rest is history - I've found my true purpose! And all of the healing work I do also integrates nicely with my brand strategy/consulting work too, which is incredibly intuitive work too. I'm loving the experience of watching my company and offerings evolve as I keep growing and sharing what I have to offer with more people.

What is your favourite treatment that you like to spoil yourself with?

My favorite treatments are facials (my girl Hillery Sklar in Williamsburg is where its at!), massages (Tai Ji body workand Shun Fa are my spots) and Reiki/energy/body work (Rebecca Conran and Erika Spring are my gals).

What do you do on a daily basis that you find keeps your life on track in a holistic way?

Meditation is my go-to daily grounding practice. And it's often followed with a yoga practice, even if just for a few minutes to get me into my body and aligned with my breath. Keeping my life on track is all about feeling aligned with everything I'm involved in and like I am living in my absolute truth - which has to start with being connected to my heart and innermost intuition. I can't be connected if I'm not consciously tuning in. And sharing my practices with clients, whether its coaching or energy work or brand strategy, means I need to consciously connect to myself even more so I'm clear on my own energy boundaries, my intentions and my inspired creativity.

 

Where is your favourite place to nourish yourself?

My favorite places to nourish myself are my home - love to cook new recipes and try to put together meals I've never thought about creating before! I also love By Chloe and anywhere I can get delicious Thai (like Sage in Williamsburg) or healthy breakfast (like Abracadabra, also in Williamsburg).

What practice or treatment can’t you live without?

I can't live without yoga! It saves my life again and again - on and off the mat. I think with practice you realize that it's actually a life long practice, especially off the mat. How you show up for your practice often times is a mirror for how you're showing up for your life. Am I in a rush to get into the perfect pose? Am I worried about how I look compared to other people? Am I listening to my body and moving in a way that honors what I need in the moment? Am I breathing? Am I pushing myself too hard? What happens if I do the thing that scares me? What if I fall down? I could go on but you get the jist. It's a lifestyle for sure and I can't live without it - it's absolutely a big part of who I am today.

How and why did you start developing your practices? 

I started developing my own spiritual practices long ago probably when I tried out my first yoga class over a decade ago. I didn't know it at the time, but I was getting started in developing a physical practice that would transform me spiritually, emotionally and mentally. I really got serious about spirituality when I put down drugs and alcohol 5 years ago and had to find a new solution to the discomfort and anxiety I had been numbing with substances for many years. Recovery led me to many tools including meditation and a heightened self-care regimen that helped me get connected to myself and my intuition. I still feel like a total novice but I am so grateful to have gotten to go on lengthy meditation and yoga retreats that have helped me deepen my practice and I've worked with incredible mentors and teachers who've helped guide me and inspire my continued evolution.

Who was your great mentor/teacher?

Two good friends of mine are incredible meditation mentors I love dearly - Rakhel Shapiro and Janusz Welin. They are meditation mentors and really just spiritual cheerleaders for me and so many others. We've been friends for quite awhile and they're always inspiring me to go deeper in my practice and also explore new ways of connecting more deeply, such as through retreat and longer meditation periods. I love all my mentors at Laughing Lotus too - they are absolutely life savers, especially Christine Chen and Mary Dana Abbott.

Tell us your practice style and how did you choose your teaching methods?

My practice style whether its energy healing, yoga or coaching/strategy is all about intuitive connection and transparency. I connect to my intuitive guidance and also help support my clients in tuning into themselves so that together we access their highest possibility and aligned truth. I let my clients' energy guide the process and help support them in ways that feel aligned with their highest good. I've studied how to hold space for myself and others quite a bit and recognize this as a crucial starting point for any kind of work conducted with other individuals, whether it be a private healing session, coaching or an entire yoga class. Holding space for people to have their own unique experiences, to express themselves and to feel free to be exactly who they are is an art and a privilege.

What obstacles has developing your courses helped you overcome in your own life?

Stepping up into being a healer and offering all my gifts has helped me overcome a lot of fear I've had in the past about not being enough. That's a big old story of mine, which I'm sure many people can relate to. Putting myself out there vulnerably and transparently has helped me grow and expand and connect to so many people - it's been beautiful to connect with people all over the world who resonate with what I am sharing, especially via Instagram and my blog and newsletter #MagicMemos.

Who do you admire in the holistic world?

I admire all healers, coaches, spiritual guides, teachers and mentors who avail themselves to helping the people they are meant to help! I love Gabby Bernstein, Marie Forleo, Tony Robbins, Rha Goddess, Rebecca Conran, Erika Spring, Malaine Lea (my coach), and my acupuncture practitioners at Brooklyn Open Acupuncture! I also love my friend and mentor Abel Costa, who is leading the opening of a new school for energy healers (of which I am a part) called The Soft Focus Collective.

Which ancient modality systems attract you most?

I am very attracted to energy healing and some modalities that are reminiscent of shamanism. I love intuitive readings like Akashic Record Reading. I love helping people see their truth and work through blocks that stand in the way of their liberation.

How do you remain authentic within a commercial world?

Authenticity to me is about alignment and vision. Am I being true to myself? Am I saying what I really feel? Am I embodying my highest self? These are questions I try to ask myself whenever I am putting my content out there or having conversations with potential new clients or considering new opportunities. Authenticity is a personal parlay between you and your intuition, or so I believe - it comes down to energetic alignment and trusting that only you can answer for yourself if you're being your most authentic, transparent self.

Tell us about your company and where we can find you?

My company is called Make Only Magic. You can find out more about me atwww.sydneycampos.com and on social media via Make Only Magic or @sydneycampos. I live in Brooklyn, NY but frequently travel around the US, particularly to San Francisco, where I got to grow up!

What do you find is the easiest way for you to connect to your holistically minded community?

I connect with my community through events, social media and collaborations. I want to plan more retreats and ideally my big dream is to open a sober nightclub in NYC sometime in the near future! My vision is for the nightclub to be a hub for all the conscious community building going on - a place for people to come together to dance and share and simply connect authentically and really bask in high vibes. Dance is the ultimate unifer! My nightclub is also attached to a co-working space for social impact entrepreneurs AND in the same space I want there to be space for holistic healing practitioners so everything is integrated and everyone can be working side by side. It's a big vision but I'm taking steps to create a pop up experience sometime soon to test the concept.

How do you morally react to practicing new age spirituality and using western medicine?

I love it - the two need to work together more often! We all have so much to learn from each other - there are many paths and many different tools that all work differently depending on who you're working with. I love having many tools and practices to pull from. I'm excited for western medicine to start listening more to eastern wisdom and spirituality so the two can be more integrated on the mass consumer level.

What led you to seek healthcare opportunities outside of traditional western medicine?

Oh wow I could write so much about seeking outside help apart from traditional western medicine. I've had hormonal imbalance issues since I can remember, for which I was just put on birth control with no questions asked at age 14. I also always had skin issues and really struggled with acne and just not feeling good about my appearance. I went through so many experiences with antibiotics, accutane and more super invasive treatments for acne over the years - its hard to believe! Eventually around age 24 I intuitively sensed I needed to get reconnected with myself which meant getting off birth control. That set my body into quite a weird limbo but I knew it had to be done - I would balance out eventually. It started with getting sober too. My first year in sobriety I sensed that I really wanted to actually feel - how did I feel without anything in my system? Birth control had to go. My skin reacted so badly as did practically everything else or so it seemed. I saw tons of dermatologists and doctors and even considered going on accutane again. I was desperate. But then my holistic coach recommended I do a cleanse with the help of a holistic chiropractor (Dr. Lou = the best) which helped me get on a healthy eating routine and also helped me clarify what foods were causing candida overgrowth and sensitivity. Essentially, it was quite a commitment but after 3 months my skin looked beautiful and I couldn't believe it - I was so balanced and felt AMAZING. My energy levels were incredible, I would just pop out of bed each day and feel great (I cut sugar and caffeine and all processed foods in addition to no dairy or gluten). I learned that nutrition was actually the roof of my imbalance and that getting cleared of candida and other foods that really didn't agree with me was the key to feeling amazing. That set me on the path to studying health coaching and getting more interested in learning about healing with nutrition. It also opened me up to more holistic remedies and homeopathy!

What unique challenges and rewards come from working with your clients?

I love working with all my clients, whether for coaching, energy work or strategy - nothing fulfills me more than supporting inspired people who want to take care of themselves and live in alignment with their highest vision. I am sometimes challenged by allowing clients to have their own experiences and just trusting that the flow will happen for them however it needs to happen with respect to their unique process. Sometimes I want to offer explanations or rationalizations - but I've been practicing letting go and just allowing, which plays into the art of holding space. The rewards of seeing people heal and grow and step up are limitless. It's my favorite feeling of all - I am so fortunate I get to build my life around helping others, it's where its at!!

What do you think will be considered the hottest holistic specialties developing over the next decade?

Over the next decade I see intuitive reading becoming a more widely available offering - and I see more people stepping up to own and grow their intuitive abilities. I see it becoming more common place for friends to do readings for each other to help work through issues - instead of people just going to therapy or their own private healer, I see community emerging around healing so we can support each other in a more peer-to-peer model. I also see energy work and meditation becoming even more common place, which we see with the emergence of meditation studios and more widespread referencing of things having to do with energy in popular culture.