Thursday, May 1, 2008

Giving up coffee - Attempt #2

If you know me well, you also know that I'm a huge coffee addict. Well, I used to be. Till 3 weeks back. I signed up for this Sri Sri Yoga course conducted by the Art of Living Foundation a few months back.

In early March, I was suffering some severe back and shoulder pain and even took some expensive massages to temporarily alleviate the pain. My co-worker, Pavel Dmitriev, to whom I was complaining about my ailment, encouraged me to sign up for that course. The fact that he was one of the teachers for the course encouraged me.

The course did wonders for my body and my back pain is forgotten but that's not what I'm going to write about today. When I signed up, I assumed that only asanas or postures would be taught and that would help strengthen my core. But during the course, we were also taught breathing and meditation techniques. We were forbidden from consuming any caffeine during the 6 days of the course. I found it difficult to be without caffeine for the first two days and had a nagging headache. I managed to grit my teeth and bear the caffeine prohibition. When the course finished, I was determined to see how long I could go without coffee. The breathing execises I had learnt seemed to make me fresh and I replaced coffee with half an hour of breathing exercises every day. The feeling was absolutely fantastic. I didn't feel the need for coffee at all and not only that I was feeling super fresh everyday. To top that, I was only sleeping 4 or 5 hours a day. I'm not sure if the breathing exercises were a placebo but even if they were, it was a pretty good one at that. To be fair, I was consuming one or two cups of tea a day but that seemed miniscule compared to the 4 or 5 cups of coffee that I was drinking each day. It's a great sense of relief that I was able to quit it cold turkey. I want to keep this up for as long as I can. I think I will as long as I keep doing the breathing exercises.

I'd definitely recommend the course for anyone looking for stress relief, mental/physical conditioning or just to learn yoga in general. It was taught by two able teachers, Pavel and Raushni. You can find more information about the course here. To me, it was the best $150 that I had spent.

Meanwhile, I have an almost new coffeemaker with timer for sale. Let me know if you are interested. ;-)


  1. My father cured a shoulder pain & nagging headaches with Art of Living, and 10 years later still kicks off his morning with breathing exercises/ treadmill/ prayer/ and of course a cup of coffee. Art of Living is really great.