Dominique Antiglio is one of the UK’s leading Sophrologists and founder of BeSophro, a London-based Sophrology clinic offering a simple but powerful combination of breathing and relaxation exercises, visualisation, meditation and body awareness methods, to help you with stress management and self-development.
Dominique says: As a mum to a 22 month old, I wake up around 7.30am to the sound of the cutest voice enthusiastically shouting “BUS” or “DOG”! The first thing I do is giving my boy a warm hug so we both start the day in happy mode! As a Sophrologist my days are all very different, depending if I’m at my clinic seeing clients or guiding groups in a school or business environment. I really enjoy meeting different people and tailoring Sophrology for their specific needs. Whether I’m commuting or pushing the pram in the park I take the time in the morning to center myself in the present moment. With Sophrology it only takes a few minutes; I connect to my body and mind, acknowledge how I feel and use my breath to restore a sense of balance and positivity if necessary, or tune into my confident self if I have a very busy day ahead.
Sophrology totally changed my life when I was 15. Understanding so early that every person has the freedom to decide how they want to live their life had a huge impact on me. I started work in the well-being/therapeutic world as an Osteopath and it was a natural development to become a Sophrologist, so I could give people the tools to heal themselves. To be a Sophrologist you must have experienced the benefits of the practise for yourself before you can share it with others. It attracts people who want to feel better in their day to day life, improve their health or sleep, feel calmer and happier. Often they are preparing for specific events, like a presentation or exams. The best part of my job is witnessing people’s evolution – when they come back and tell me that the practice makes a difference in the way they feel, sleep, or think. When they feel more in control and more balanced again. My least favourite part is maybe accounting?! I’ve never managed to get excited about numbers… My role model? I’m inspired by people who are contributing to make other people’s life better, in a small or big way; Malala has a remarkable strength and strong message. I am often moved by what my clients share, their stories about how they have managed to turn things around. When I started practising Sophrology in my teens my teacher used to tell me not to worry about a decision or a situation, as nothing is permanent. Life is change and you can decide to change things if they are not working. That sense of hope is essential.
I always have lunch, no matter what! Being Swiss, I used to go home from school to have lunch with my family and this has stayed with me. It’s a lovely break during my day, even if it’s short. I always have a bit of protein, perhaps lentils, fish or chicken as they keep me going. London offers amazing choice so there’s no excuse for skipping meals. My snacks are usually almonds between sessions or occasionally a gluten-free brownie! I’m always excited to go home and see my little boy and my husband. I use the commute to finish my work so my mind can be free when I get home. As with many other parents, we have a routine when I get home and I try to make it fun and be fully present in that moment. Some days I manage it better than others! I feel very grateful to have these different roles.
I walk whenever it’s possible and exercise one or twice a week when my boy is asleep in the afternoon. I’m not very good at cooking but I’m the one who plans the meals, does the shopping and buys the cookbooks so it doesn’t get boring!
When I was little I dreamt of being a vet or a doctor. Maybe one day I will be able to give more time to a cause for children. Protecting innocence and promoting education is also very important to me.
My top online recommendations are:
I log into Conde Nast when I need to dream and read about amazing destinations as inspiration for my next holiday!
It’s less glamourous but online food shopping is so useful, it gives me time to do something else more exciting!
Recently I’ve been listening to SuperSoul by Oprah Winfrey. It’s full of interesting interviews or classes from the greatest thought, business or spiritual leaders of our time. Media that helps us grow in awareness is so powerful.
Photo credit: photographicblonde