MY LIFE IN FLOWERS
Chau Kei Ngai
Tucked away in idyllic Discovery Bay we met up with yoga entrepreneur Chau Kei Ngai to explore her studio and practice. Here she lets us into her idyll as we discover how she stays grounded through incorporating nature and flowers into her everyday…
Can you tell us a bit about yourself?
I feel like I’ve explored many paths within my lifetime with different professions and careers. Most people know me as a yoga instructor, a social influencer, a mother, an entrepreneur. I also have a passion for and have studied psychology and interior design.
How did your yoga journey begin?
I was working in Taipei in an interior design company and one day I was sitting in my office and had a severe case of breathing difficulty, something I’ve had to deal with my whole life. After that attack I decided to explore yoga to try and ease my symptoms. It has since become part of my everyday lifestyle.
What does a typical day look like for you?
I get up early for a brief meditation session. I usually do a 5-10 minute silent meditation and sometimes a positive affirmation to set the tone of the day. One of my favourites is “I create my day”. Afterwards I’ll do 20 minutes of yoga and strength work. I have a green juice, head to my studio, teach and work with my team. Then after lunch it’s any meetings that might come up.
“I practice sunrise meditation every other week. The collective intention of opening up to the sounds of dawn and first rays of light is extremely empowering and refreshing.”
How do you weave nature into your everyday life?
I’m blessed to have a studio with serene views of both mountain and ocean. I catch glimpses of birds hovering above the sea throughout my day. I try to hike on the weekend, I love trails- the wilder the better. I also have fresh flowers delivered to me every Friday. I love how they add vibrancy and vitality to my space and especially love arrangements that are rustic and wild.
Lots of us around the world have had to spend an increasing amount of time at home, do you have any advice on how to keep yourself grounded and positive in such difficult times?
Staying close to nature is what keeps me grounded. The sunrise, sunset, moonrise- those things never change, nature is one stability we can depend on.
“Staying close to nature is what keeps me grounded. The sunrise, sunset, moonrise- those things never change, nature is one stability we can depend on.”
What are the key elements of keeping a clear space and clear mind?
I think everything has its own unique character, just like people, but not all work well together and there’s nothing wrong with that. My goal is to bring things together that compliment seamlessly and let go of stuff that doesn't work. I try to minimize busy patterns and instead opt for calming colours.
How do you create an inspiring and calming atmosphere in your home and studio?
I keep things simple, open, light and fresh with a dash of colour.
How do you maintain a connection with your surroundings and community?
I practice sunrise meditation every other week. The collective intention of opening up to the sounds of dawn and first rays of light is extremely empowering and refreshing.
What are your favourite parts of your neighbourhood?
The ocean and the mountains- both are within 5 mins reach.
Can you tell us about your most poignant flower memory?
My very first job was in a florist, the smell of being surrounded by fresh flowers has always stayed with me.
How can we weave flowers and nature into our daily practice, whether that's meditation or yoga?
I like to adorn my studio with fresh and dried flowers. I love rearranging the older flowers to give them a new look. That’s a meditation practice for me as I find arranging flowers very therapeutic.