Enter the world of huggably heart felt Robin Schwoyer whose work in the world was introduced to me by a mutual friend. She wears many hats as you will clearly see when you dive into this interview that will tickle you with delight. It incorporates art, yoga, children, sprituality and a clear sense that she is Divinely Guided.
How do you live your bliss?
I choose to connect to joy on a daily basis. I feel things very deeply and can over process, yet I learned there was a benefit for this as a counselor, minister and business woman. I developed a good understanding of why and how things happened from my processing. However, it could be a bit much. I noticed that time in nature, listening to classical music, being creative and helping others seemed to expand my awareness and allowed me to integrate feelings, observations and ponderings. Over time, it has become my “ritual” to breathe deeply using various mindful breath exercises, to listen to beautiful music each day, or play my Native flute, to write or create art, to laugh, to pray, to listen deeply to others and to listen deeply to my own heart. Connecting to my heart gives a richer, grander perspective to life, allowing me to go with the flow more easily and to simply be. In life, we know the saying sh*t happens…as a holistic person, I believe shift happens…and as a joyful person I know Bliss Happens! For me bliss is “being in a state of Love.”
You seem to be a Renaissance Woman who wears many hats; how did you learn to become a multi-talented multi-tasker?
This probably grew out of my constant curiosity about people and how the world works. From my earliest memories, I was fascinated by people. I was often confused as a young child about what I could sense was the disconnect as someone presented themselves to the world. I tended to be quite intuitive and would tell my mother I could “see” masks or shadows on people. They might smile, but inside they were hurting. Or they were angry on the outside, but inside was this person on the inside screaming to get out and just play. I noticed the “happy”people too. They seemed to be the same inside and out. I would say today they were “aligned.” They were genuine. These persons smiled with authentic smiles and they seemed to respond to life with an evenness. They had hobbies and helped people or animals. I liked the sense of calm, yet, saw they were filled with life and enjoyed themselves, even when life threw them tough times. I had a grandfather like that too. I compared him to the complainers of the family and noticed his humble, joyful approach seemed to energize him to accomplish much, as compared to those who drained themselves with negative thoughts. So, I suppose, early on I began to model myself from these observations. I had a teacher too, who taught me in 5th grade that every year you should learn something new. Study it, practice it, and become it. In years, she would say, you will have a rich life of experiences to enjoy and share with others. Voila! Here I am! I love to learn and try things and I love to create. I love to help others and use my creativity to support those in need and to model for them ways to be empowered in their own lives.
What is Pink Hearts Wellness?
Pink HeARTs Wellness for Women is a non-profit organization inspired to empower and promote vital health and wellness for women of all ages. Mind, Body, Spirit support is offered through holistic services, education and creative expression. It was created to address the needs of women I was meeting a few years ago. I already had the Autism outreach using creative expression with the kids and families, yet, in my client practice, more and more women were coming forth wanting to “be creative” and “be powerful.” I thought it interesting. These requests for healing were rooted in this creative urge. Additionally, in 2009, I decided to join the Susan Komen 3 day, 60 mile Walk for Breast Cancer in honor of my mother and step mother, who had both passed on from cancer. This was for personal healing. I heard the message, “This a necessary first step of many steps for your healing and the healing of many others.” So, my good friends helped me form a team, which we called Pink HeARTs Wellness. It was true. All those physical steps in training, led to me organizing myself more and taking better steps in health, wellness and time management. Pink HeARTs Wellness is still evolving as a support, educational and creative playgroup. And recently, I have had more men contact me, so we shall see how spirit leads us.
You use 7 ‘E words’ to describe what you do….how did you come to choose them?
I have always used alliterations in marketing and in sermons. I find they capture people’s attention and help them to retain more of the message. Educate * Envision * Empower * Enlighten * Embrace * Expand * Enjoy. These words expressed the ways in which we could help one another to live more vibrant lives, healing one heart at a time, yet radiating global healing with this new empowered state of being.
Can you speak about HUGS from the HeART?
HUGS from the HeART stands for Helping You Grow Spiritually from the heart. HUGS was actually a program I originally had for a kids yoga program, but it seemed to fit with the requests for a creative playgroup. I use the word HeART in most of my programs, since I see connecting to the heart as being key to the art of living life. And art bridges hearts in ways that many times words cannot. So, this group offers workshops where women and men enjoy breathing, meditation, music, discussion, and creating an art piece which is unique to them and expresses whatever they need, all while supporting them in their transformation.
How have the layers of life losses that you experienced shape the woman you are now?
From my earliest memories, our family life seemed to be marked by significant death and loss. Some quite tragic. Again, I observed. Those family members who could find greater significance for happenings or could connect to the good memories seemed to do better than those who became depressed or those who expressed nothing. I remember as a teenager telling others, “life is for the living, so enjoy it.” I saw so many other teenagers who were into the drama of being perpetually miserable. I didn’t understand it. It seemed somehow worse to be alive and missing life, than it was to actually die. Some aspects of this formed a part of my desire to be a minister, helping others to have the “abundant life” that Jesus spoke of. I was always compassionate and good at taking care of people, yet I wanted to inspire people to seek and accept the joy that is their birthright.
And then, there is Happy Hearts Yoga. Please share about the benefits of yoga for those on the autism spectrum.
I have done Yoga since the 80’s. When my son was exhibiting many impulsive behaviors and sensory issues, I thought maybe I could use Yoga to help him. We practiced breathing and doing poses to move energy through his body. As I learned more about his Autism diagnosis, I studied Occupational Therapy and various other approaches and began to see connections. This would lead me to working with his peers and school teacher. From there over 10 years, I developed a Yoga approach which addresses sensory issues, emotional regulation, focus, cooperation, communication, imagination, fitness and self confidence. It is called SMARTKIDS® Method and is the basis for our Spectrum Kidz Yoga®. There are studies done by others using Yoga with children and special needs children which show an improvement in many areas such as focus, calming, cooperation, balance, strength, better self control and regulation, along with others. We know we see differences and hear about it from the families. I love the stories parents share when their child remembers to breathe and can feel better. Or they do poses spontaneously, often to self regulate or express.
How does creativity feed your soul?
I would say creativity is my soul! I think we are all divine sparks just waiting to shine brightly. Observing the Universe and nature here on Earth, we see constantly evolving creativity. Expansion, contraction, birth, death, light, dark, all mixing colorfully as we cycle through time. We each are a divine expression of that ultimate flow of Creative Force, and we get to express that creativity as part of our blueprint of existence. For me music and colors feed me. I love to play with colors. I love sparkles and glitter. I love to swirl colors together and see what happens. I do this with music and toning as well. What resonates…what resists…how do we create good vibrations in and around us which uplift not only ourselves, but all those around us. This is what lead to some of my new art and healing sessions called Good Vibrations HeART tunings. Using creativity, tuning forks, toning, colors, images and energy balancing to create wholeness and joy for the participant. Lots of fun for the “serious” work of simply becoming the joyful person we are meant to be and accepting that “Bliss Happens.”