For any of you that have not worked with me / online before, here’s a little on how to prepare / what to expect
Please try and create a conducive environment for yourself before the call. Personally I like to take the laptop to my bedroom (where I will be uninterrupted). Maybe light a candle or some incense – much the same as you would have if you were about to have a nice relaxing treatment. I would encourage you to lie down for the meditation.
If you are unable to listen uninterrupted, I would ask that you do not listen to the call live, but take the space that you need at a time suitable to you and listen to the replay. An energetic field is created around us all during the session which can be disturbed if we are not all focused on the call (much like if someone was chatting next to you in a meditation class). The energetics of the replay are just as strong as listening live.
Your video will be off for the call and there is no obligation to speak on the live call unless you would like to. Questions and comments can also be sent to me during the call via the Zoom chat option.
Please get in contact if you are unsure about anything or would like to bring anyone else to the group.
The second in a series of articles by Thriive Talks (an organisation that supports personal transformation across India and Asia). Natalie gives her input to the question ‘Are you suppressing your inner Masculine or Feminine side? Balance them today and benefit!’
To strengthen your masculine energy: – Indulge in mathematical or analytical activities and complete them in an orderly, linear fashion, for example by working your way through a task list.
– Construct something, engage in physically strong activities, or carry some weights or heavy items
-Light a fire. Watch it burn, be involved in stoking the fire and keeping it alight.
To strengthen your feminine energy:
– Consider how you are feeling and express your emotions. Engage in creative activities including writing, music, painting, cooking, sewing
-Allow yourself to complete your day / tasks in a non linear fashion. Drop the need to fully complete one task before starting another and just allow yourself to do things as they come into your head.
‘Sound meditation has been an absolute revelation for me. As a newcomer to meditation, I have struggled in prior attempts with keeping my mind focused on the practice. I found Natalie’s guided meditation with sound/music effectively held my hand (or mind) through the practice and allowed me to truly experience the meditative state.’ Akash, 45years, Finance
Very happy to be back in Goa after spending the last few months in the US and Colombia. I will be starting a new weekly sound meditation class on Friday’s in Porvorim at Mozaic Design Centre, 4.00 – 5.30 pm. Open to everyone, this is a real opportunity to experience a place of deep relaxation and inner calm, encouraging you to rejuvenate and let go of any stress and stress related ailments. Come and experience your first session for free.
PLEASE BRING A MAT TO LIE ON AND A CUSHION FOR YOUR HEAD
‘Feel the power that comes from focusing on something that excites you.’ Oprah Winfrey
When I came back to India at the start of this season, I was all guns a blazing, looking forward to the next phase of the album – the Goa launch and India tour. The band was back together and I was feeling really excited about the next few months.
Meetings, planning, marketing, PR, ideas flowing, potential collaborations in place.
Only thing was, that I was feeling really tired. In fact I had got to the point of being tired of hearing myself say how tired I was!
With that in mind, I decided to take advantage of one of the main delights of living in Goa. The opportunity to take a hut on the beach, spend time with nature and myself and re-charge my batteries.
As so often happens when I take the time to connect and listen to myself, one of ‘Life’s Surprises’ occurred and I discovered that what I was feeling underneath all the excitement was actually something very different.
‘Let music lead the way’ has been my motto for the last however many years. However, I realized I was no longer letting music lead the way, I was letting a preconceived idea of what I am supposed to do with my music lead the way.
Is ‘marketing’ music? Is ’PR’ music? Is ‘planning and management’ music? Whilst all necessary, my motto had subconsciously become ‘Let business lead the way’!
Being in the creative world has (in some ways) turned out to be harder than anything else I have ever done. Law, business planning, the corporate world of consultancy, although hard, had a structure that included other professionals to help you do your job. Musicians in the current market, often find themselves needing to do everything, with little or no resources. Luckily (due to my work background) I have the ability to do most, however something was going amiss.
Doing it all in the preconceived way I thought was necessary to be successful was causing a tiredness and a tension in me. A ‘disconnectedness’ in myself that was the direct opposite to what my music first brought me – A common theme amongst anyone trying to make a living from their passion, I am sure.
What if I were to bring the focus back to the creative and drop the idea of what I was supposed to do?
What if creativity, whilst bringing us back to our souls and our roots, also links us in with the magic of life?
If (as I believe) when we honor ourselves and our passions, things do work out for us, I needed to take the leap of faith in relation to my musical ‘success’ and create the right space for some ‘magic’ to happen.
The first thing I did to honor my re-found wisdom was postpone the album launch from November 2016 to January 2017. As it turned out, the weekend that was planned for the November launch was the weekend the Indian government decided to de-monetise. What a disaster that would have been! Our actual album launch (held in January at the Museum of Goa) turned out to be such a great event, I really couldn’t have asked for anything more.
Since my ‘return to heart’, every time we have played our performances seem to have got better, our crowds have got bigger, our appreciation stronger, and for the first time my phone kept ringing asking us if we were available to play. What a nice turn around that has been. What’s even greater is that it feels like it is only the beginning!
One of the beautiful things I learned when I first came to India was to let go of trying to control the outcomes. ‘Success’ as we know it is out of our hands. All we can do is honor our needs and trust that when we do that things work out.
When my body is tense my voice is tense, when my body is tired my music is tired, when the music is tired how can an audience be drawn to me? I am sure this is the same for everyone in every type of work that we do, just particularly obvious when it comes to me and my music.
So I (yet again) end this blog in a similar way to before:
Maybe our creative passions are there to teach us and help us in everyday life, as much as they are for us to gain joy? Maybe they need to be seen as a critical part of who we are as opposed to a luxury for the talented few? How would life be if we all managed to get over our fears and follow the yearning of our hearts and our passions?
Friday 20th January, MOG – museum of goa 7.30pm, very happy to announce that we will be having the Goa launch of our new album eXhale.
We will be giving our first full band performance of the album. Line up includes:
Natalie Matos: acoustic guitar and voice
Vivek Philip: drums and backing vocals
Anna Shabalina: cello and musical saw
Karan Sajnani: lead guitar and didgeridoo
Linar Rizatdinov: bass
Derek Julien: lead electric guitar
Ali Cat: congas
Yummy food and drinks are all available at the museum.
A bus is also being organised from Anjuna, so please get in contact if transport is a problem.
As many of you know, the album was funded through the support of a crowd funding campaign, so looking forward to celebrating with those that have supported us as well as new people we have met along the way.
I would be so grateful if you could help by spreading the word. If there is one thing I have learn”t through the making of this album, it is that good hings happen with a little help from everyone!
“Music is the language of the spirit. It opens the secret of life bringing peace, abolishing strife.” Kahlil Gibran
I read an article the other day that was giving advice on media, promoting yourself and making the most of what you do.
Within it, the article suggested I should answer the question – why do I do what I do?
In truth, there was never really a plan, music just kind of came up and bit me on the bum. Having had a musical childhood I had long left all playing behind, however after a life changing event, I found myself burdened with a wealth of feelings that just had to be expressed through music.
As I child I had played a number of instruments including piano and cello, however I was feeling the need to sing. Since I was unlikely to get hold of a piano in South Goa, I decided to pick up a guitar.
Using it mainly for note reference at first, I found myself writing a number of songs that helped me to make sense of how I was feeling. I had never thought of using these songs in any way other than therapeutically for myself and in fact would hide away at the back of my house to quietly sing so that no one would hear me.
When a friend (who played and sang) discovered that I had written a few songs, he encouraged me to sing them to him so that he could back me with guitar. I don’t think I will ever forget the feeling of how I felt when I sang him the first few songs. I felt so embarrassed, my heart was racing, sounds in the room seemed to be heightened and when I had finished I wanted nothing more than to disappear. Seems crazy looking back that sharing some music with someone could cause such anxiety. The desire for approval was huge. I felt like I was sharing such an intimate part of myself.
Luckily (whilst I don’t know what he actually thought) he patiently smiled and came up with a guitar part, gently encouraging me to feel more confident in what I was singing.
I don’t know if he ever realised what an important moment that was for me – the slightest reaction in the wrong direction and I could have very easily refused to sing in front of anyone again.
It is only with time that I have realised just how many defenses and barriers I had up against presenting who I am to the world. Always worried that I was not good enough, I spent much of my time presenting what I thought people wanted to see.
Musically, I seem to have this overwhelming desire to achieve a feeling in me. This feeling comes from writing and playing my own songs and will only come about when I relax, open my heart and allow every bit of me to flow.
Interestingly, when I am in this space it doesn’t seem to matter whether anyone else actually likes what I do!
It is the desire for this feeling that has pushed me to get over my nerves, get over my insecurities and follow my passion. Like a drug addiction, it has often felt like there is no other option. Yet what is different and so much more beautiful, is that the more I play, the more the vibration of the music helps me to relax, the more I reach the feeling I want to reach. In fact the feeling grows and grows getting bigger and bigger, reaching new heights I never thought possible. It reminds me of a picture of a cyclone as it gains speed, yet the music (and image) works in a positive way, infiltrating all that surrounds it, capturing, lifting and softening.
This ever expanding musical cyclone has taken over me and my life and in so doing has helped me to soften as a person, trust and feel confident in who I am and what life has to bring.
Before I got onto the musical path I was running a healing and music centre, with my main practice being Reiki and healing. Music and healing have become one in the same to me. Creativity and passion – the human spirit.
So with that in mind, I find myself writing the same thing I wrote at the end of my last blog:
Maybe our creative passions are there to teach us and help us in everyday life, as much as they are for us to gain joy? Maybe they need to be seen as a critical part of who we are as opposed to a luxury for the talented few? How would life be if we all managed to get over our fears and follow our passions?
‘Music is a moral law. It gives soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination, and charm and gaiety to life and to everything.’ Plato
Music is now so intertwined with my life and learning’s that it would seem like something were missing if I didn’t talk about the effect my music has had on me personally.
Coming back to music late in life has meant that I have had to learn quickly and often be guided by others. Equally I have had to learn to maintain a trust in my own instinct. Making an album has been a far bigger life absorbing and life changing event than I could ever have imagined. Almost two years on from the crowd funding campaign, it is hardly surprising that there have been the usual ups and downs within it all.
I truly believe that when things go wrong it is because there is something to learn/something better out there to be had. The desire to protect the integrity of my music has taught me to voice my needs early on. I have been lucky enough to be quite clear on the direction I have wanted to take and as such, I have been able to move towards those that listen and gently move away from those that don’t. Each time learning to trust more and more that when you have the courage to close a door that is wrong, you gain the key to another door that is so much better.
It may take a while at times to find the new door and yes, at those moments it can feel excruciating, but that’s another thing I have learnt – life has its own sense of time and the more I can let go and allow myself to tune in with life’s wheel, the more I seem to be shown a new door with so much ease it can make me laugh out loud.
The consequence has been creating music that I truly love and working with people that I truly love working with. When life has all got a bit much I have been lucky enough to be able to pick up the guitar, feel the vibration through my body, engage the soothing hum of the voice and be lulled back into an open heart and a sense of knowing that with a bit of patience and trust it all works out in the end.
So with that in mind, I would encourage everyone to follow their passion in whatever form it takes and to whatever degree is possible.
Maybe our passions are there to teach us and help us in everyday life, as much as they are for us to gain joy?
Maybe they need to be seen as a critical part of who we are as opposed to a luxury for the talented few?