There is a certain energy about Erin Lee. You can feel it in her smile, the way she moves, speaks. It’s calming, vibrant and well, it just makes you feel good.
This all makes sense when you consider what she does, and what she has achieved.
Mindfulness, purpose, living with intention; this is what Erin wants to share with the world, and something she is doing in the most magical way with The Little Book of Big Intentions.
Her journey to this life began back in 2009 after her husband passed.
“It was a normal day for us,” she says. “We had just had our second child, she was four months old at the time, and we had a four-year-old too. We were wandering around Sunshine Plaza when he suddenly and very unexpectedly fell to the ground,” Erin says. “That was the last breath he ever took and they have never been able to determine the cause of death. He was a fit, healthy 35-year-old so this was a big shock; it turned my world upside down.
“For me, I was in a state of constrictive grief for quite some time. I was practising yoga and I used that practice, and the application of mindfulness to help navigate through that period.
“That is the beauty of life. Each day you get to make a choice about the approach you want to take and set the intentions you want to live by. It was what helped me be able to eventually feel more expansive and go back to being in the moment and enjoy life with my girls again.”
So began Erin’s next chapter, and one that has brought her to where she is today.
“I decided to do my yoga teacher training in 2013 and started writing a book in 2016,” she says. “I actually spent a few years working on that; I even finished it to the third draft. It was a bit of a self-help memoir about the grief experience. But I realised it was more for me, it wasn’t meant to be put out there. So, I left it at that.”
Instead, in 2020 she started The Mindful Yoga School in Eudlo, a mindfulness and meditation training centre with her mission to support others live with authentic presence, purpose, courage and compassion.
“I began offering yoga teacher training and meditation and mindfulness teacher training, as well as other events and programs that support community connection and wellbeing,” Erin says.
“I run it out of the incredible Chenrezig Buddhist Institute, and it was through here that I met some wonderful people who have become mentors of mine, and played a big part in what was to flow next.
“I decided I wanted to create a book to support the trainees with intentions for their yoga practice, and what started as an idea to do maybe eight or 10 intentions, blossomed into The Little Book of Big Intentions and I just kept going with them until I felt complete,” she adds with her powerful smile.
The book, which was officially launched in October, took Erin 18 months to bring to life and was a work of collaboration and “shared energy”. “It has been an absolute joy to create this book,” she says.
“It wasn’t a rushed project, I simply allowed it to unfold as it did and spent at least one week with each intention on the yoga mat in everyday life, and that’s where the writings in the book came from.”
The final offering contains 27 intentions and includes the inspirational writings, quotes and step-by-step instructions for physical alignment.
Erin says the entire co-creative process was a beautiful shared experience. The book itself is also beautiful, featuring a cloth cover, gold detailing and divine illustrations from Sunshine Coast artist Keturah Tracey.
“I had a lot of guidance from my mentor Melanie Spears who sat with me for hours bouncing ideas off each other and contemplating the intentions, and it was Melanie that suggested we look at Keturah’s art portfolio,” Erin says.
“I fell in love. She got stuck in Austria during COVID so we chatted via Zoom and email, and she brought the illustrations to life for the book.
“I feel very excited now that it is out there in the world. It has been a magical process and everything about the book is so beautiful, and so meaningful too.
“Each intention in the book has a writing, instructions for embodying it and a beautiful illustration to demonstrate the yoga pose associated with the intention so people can begin to move through life with purpose and meaning.
“It is an invitation to feel the big intentions resonate through your body, breath, mind and heart.”
As for what’s next?
“Well, this is just the beginning,” Erin smiles. “The creative stage has occurred and now it’s about continuing to spread the love and give it energy.”
The Little Book of Big Intentions is available in book stores and online at mindfulyogaschool.com