Whatever our age, I think every woman would agree that our lives pass at a very hectic pace and there are so many hats that we wear-a partner/girlfriend/wife, a mother, a friend, a daughter, a sister, a work colleague, a step-mother, granddaughter-the list is endless. In the midst of all this mayhem and responsibilities, it is so easy to lose sight of who we truly are. Directions become blurred, the vision clouded and often we just don’t have the time to breath properly, let alone pause and think what we really want and in which direction we are going. So it was with interest and trepidation that I took on an opportunity to test a new life assessment tool, developed by a well-known yoga instructor Maya Fiennes and Angel Buster, a professional life-coach and the founding director of HAAPPi.Me.
HAAPPI.Me combines the yogic experience of Maya Fiennes, life coaching experience of Angel Buster, who created this tool and its methodology and input from Jeannette Jackson, a qualified nutritionist.
First you will have to fill in a questionnaire, answering 220 questions (the process takes about half an hour) and then you will have a very comprehensive review of where you are (called a debriefing & validating meeting) and what stands in your way of achieving your personal best. Each report, which you will receive prior to debriefing, is unique and personal to you.
Kundalini yoga that Maya teaches is based on the work of the seven chakras and this report will pin point which chakras are working efficiently and which ones are blocked. The report will also give you an insight into the strength of each of your chakras.
I filled in the report and to be honest, some of the questions weren’t easy to answer-what I mean by that is that you have to be honest with yourself and give thought to your answers, if your reply isn’t honest or doesn’t resonate with you, there is no point in doing this questionnaire because your results won’t be accurate. I did mull over a couple of questions because to me the wording wasn’t very clear but all questions are open to interpretations of our minds, so don’t let this put you off-where I struggled briefly, you might just race through. As Angel told me ‘the questionnaire asks the questions that most people don’t ask themselves’.
After I received a copy of my results-with beautiful rainbow coloured graphs that are bound to resonate with you, whether you are a Kundalini convert or are sitting on the fence like I do at times- I dislike chanting for example, even though I am very outspoken in real life .)
A couple of weeks after I received the report, Angel de-briefs me-the price of the HAPPI.ME includes your de-friefing and if you choose to, you can later continue working on your personal development with this tool with the help of a HAAPPI.Me trained coach (Angel does all the training herself).
I am not going to tell you the contents of my report (you have to do it yourself to experience this tool) but many things that Angel said to me made complete sense, to the point of being eerie accurate about my personality -and until recently Angel and I haven’t even met, so there was no way that she could have done prior research on me. Remember, the premise of the whole questionnaire is ‘to answer statements that reflect who you are, NOT who you would like to be.’
I have written about Maya before and Angel almost seems like a slight opposite of Maya, while Maya has sparkly eyes and energy shooting out of her and a very upbeat personality, Angel is quieter, in a wise and reflective way, and when you speak to her, she doesn’t say too many things to you, yet she is very to the point of the issue discussed. Angel has been in the field of personal development for over ten years, working in different countries, on her own or as part of a team, concentrating on such subjects as leadership, team work, staff communication. She says that ‘in her professional field’ she ‘tries to address the issues that people seem to keep inside and not necessarily what they initially present’ to her.
The system that was developed as creative collaboration, will measure seven core life areas that are:
Courage, creativity, willpower, compassion, truth, wisdom, and connection and it has a very colourful, easy to navigate layout.
My report came down to …100 pages and I did feel a little overwhelmed to start with ( the current, newer version is 40 pages without the personal development plan), but you have to remember that a coach will go over it with you to start with and that you will have a choice of whether to continue the work on your own or with a coach. I have many American friends who are almost addicted to their regular therapy sessions, I, personally, prefer the time to reflect myself and occasionally, might ask an expert for input, at the time when I feel the need for an objective view, but there are no rights or wrongs here-just do what makes sense to you, as it is your path and no one else’s.
Part of the report includes a diary that you will keep with certain questions that will need to be answered by you and I choose to do mine when I have the time to ponder certain issues or things in a quite environment. Your report will also include certain yoga positions to practise for each chakra -will illustrations and instructions and I find that often, in the evening, having done a few, depending on how busy my day was, they ground me and make me feel more centered and calm.
Nutrition tips will compliment your journey and I think suggestions are reasonable, not draconian, so all the things that you will do will produce a stronger result that will most likely be long-lasting.
I was also quite lucky ( thank you Camilla !) to have a chance to talk to both Maya and Angel during the Yoga Show in Olympia at the end of October and they told me that this tool took about a year to develop. They wanted people to become more aware of themselves and have a clearer vision of the process that is taking place with each one of us. Maya, who does retreats, said that often people have similar problems and they seem to find each other while doing the retreat-the first of its kind, HAAPPi (journey towards new beginnings) & MayaSpace integrated coaching and yoga retreat will take place in March of 2012 at Champneys Forest Mere in the UK.
We all are individual and Maya pointed out that ‘some people are just muddled up and just need clarity to see the problem’ while others ‘know what they problem(s) is/are but need a guide or a tool to solve it’ and I think the tool achieves this result whatever your need.
Until I have tried this tool, I wasn’t even sure it will be my cup of tea, so to say, but having used my programme for about two months now I still find interesting insights and angles to my personality that help me evolve and become happier in a way that feels meaningful to me. And remember that it doesn’t have to be a gloomy month of January for you to kick start the change-after all, how many of you have tried to kick start a new fitness regime in January and failed to keep up with it? Give it a go, it certainly feels gratifying if you stick to it and it won’t only be you who reaps the benefits of the transformation!