Aly teaches us to own who you are and find your own path. What we love the most about this gem is her realness. I mean, you don’t often see sound healers offering their practice in studded leather jackets. Read about our inspiring conversation with Aly about her unconventional journey into sound healing, what drivers her and what makes her super relatable.
MJ: What was your journey to becoming a sound healer?
AR: I have been in the wellness industry for over 15 years. and started by teaching indoor cycling at the age of 18, where the music is always pumping and adrenaline is always high. When I started teaching yoga, I really dove into the physical practice and taught power flows to blasting music. It was much later when I realized that there was more to yoga than the physical practice and that I could take responsibility for my thoughts and actions using the philosophies of yoga. I tried meditation many times and had trouble sticking with it. It was through sound healing that I first dropped into a present and calm state. It was my vehicle to mindfulness and when I felt that energetic connection, I knew I had to share it with the world.
MJ: I’m sure so many out there can relate to your experience of having trouble with traditional meditation..
AR: Just sitting can be super uncomfortable because we have hard wired ourselves to be constantly on the go both mentally and physically. I am a high octane human so it was really challenging to just be. I also have trouble closing my eyes, which is more common than you think! It’s been comforting to know that there are alternative ways to meditate and achieve the same results.
MJ: Why sound healing?
AR: Sound healing is about rhythm and frequency that helps you drop into a meditative state. Sound has always meant something to me, whether it was music or the sounds of the ocean, I have always been aware of its impact on me. When I play my bowls, I am taken into a state of absolute heaven where I feel the vibrations in my entire body. That sensation coupled with the absolute bliss of the post sound bath high keeps me craving it more and more. The benefits of the practice have changed my life, and I want to bring people together to experience the same feelings I feel. When people move, breathe and tune in together it creates a bond between them and connects them to the rhythm within their own bodies and souls.
MJ: Yes! Sound has brought communities together throughout the history of mankind and across many cultures. Could you describe how one may feel during one of your sound journeys?
AR: I offer sound experiences. The word “experience” is important because it’s like stepping into a portal that takes you to another state. It is visceral, connecting the physical, mental and spiritual parts of ourselves. The first touchpoint is with the physical body as the nervous system calms down. From a relaxed, dropped in state, the sound offers you the presence for integrating and witnessing your mental and emotional states.
MJ: What advice would you have on how to show up to this kind of practice?
AR: Showing up consistently is important because our brains take time and repetition to rewire themselves. If the practice serves you, then dedicate yourself to it. You also need to really want to learn, grow and evolve. With this, the commitment to show up comes naturally.
MJ: What does your personal practice look like?
AR: Over the last year, I have been able to practice 5 days a week. But currently my life has become a little crazy with a big move so I do what I can. You will fall into different patterns and seasons of life. When life shifts, you gotta give yourself some grace. Maybe you won't be able to practice as much for a bit, and that is ok. The more we allow ourselves to flow like nature, the more ease we will find within ourselves. Let´s normalize our habits shifting from one season to the next. Expecting ourselves to be the same way for 365 days of the year is not aligned with our human nature.
MJ: What drives you to this work?
AR: I’m on a mission to help high performers slow down and chill out.
MJ: Why this mission?
AR: Being surrounded by urban living high performers, I noticed that people who are performing at really high levels really have a hard time slowing down, which can in turn negatively impact their success and happiness in life. So I decided to step into the role of teaching high performers how to take time to relax so as to avoid burnout and actually ENJOY the benefits of their hard work.
MJ: What is the impact you are hoping to make with your work?
AR: r. I never really understood why compassion was associated with mindfulness until I felt the impact sound healing had on me. Ultimately, meditation slows your brain down in a positive way so that you can take more pauses. Now, after over a year of practicing more consistently I am able to give myself the pause between a trigger and turn my reactions into responses. I am way less abrasive, way more present and most importantly way more empathetic. Imagine if everyone took those pauses more, we could have a much safer and kinder world.
MJ: What is a mantra you are living by these days?
AR: I have two! ¨ Either I'll find a way or I'll make one .¨If you want something bad enough then you will do it.
MJ: What has your experience with Maloka been like?
AR: My experience working with the team has been amazing, supportive, collaborative and exploratory. It's been so cool to have the capacity to create from my imagination. I haven't played VR before this and my eyes have really opened to its ability to help people overcome roadblocks they experience when trying to meditate. Since I have trouble closing my eyes, the VR experience allows me to meditate with my eyes open.
MJ: Describe the experience you are offering to our users in Maloka.
AR: The first experience is a sleep series, because I noticed that many of my clients are seeking ways to fall asleep and stay asleep longer. Mental health issues are on the rise. Anxiety and depression can cause a vicious cycle of health issues and many times impact our ability to have QUALITY sleep. Many people are experiencing this without help so I want to show them that there is a way through sound healing and meditation. The experience that I offer in Maloka does not just offer quick fixes. It includes breathwork, body awareness, practicing gratitude, positive affirmations and more to help you build lasting effects to sleep better and beyond.
MJ: Any tips for our community?
AR: Mindfulness is like any other practice or workout or trying on jeans - you've gotta try a ton of them till you find your perfect fit for you. Try different modalities, experiences, to find the one for you.
Enjoy an opportunity for blissful sleeping through Aly’s “7 Days to Better Sleep Through Sound” on Maloka and follow her along here: