Finding Lykke Part 1: Feeling Flow


For weeks, I have been dreading this day. The inevitable dark moment came…


I went to leave for work at 6.45am, and I had to scrape the ice off my windscreen.


My normally perky morning attitude was tested to the max, as I struggled with my icy fingers and chattering teeth. I’m just not built for this climate. I’ve spent too long living in hot countries, my body just resists the cold, as if it’s telling me “get on a plane, and get the hell out of here, and go somewhere you can let me be free again!”


Last year was particularly long and hard, and it really took its toll on me physically, but what got me through it mentally was embracing the Danish concept of “hygge”, or “cosiness”.


This was going to be largely my plan this year, but it seems that hygge is just “so last year, darling”, and although I’m all prepped up with my electric blanket, duckdown duvet, two log burners, and plenty of candles, I was getting the feeling I had to up the ante a bit.


So, then my friend Lisa tells me about “The Little Book of Lykke”, written by the same Danish chap who wrote the best-selling “Little Book of Hygge”.

me and lykke book

This new one is based on much more scientific research, and it’s all about finding ways to make ourselves happy. Finding joy and happiness in the small pleasures in life is at its core, but there’s more…


When I start reading about it, I realise it’s right up my strata, or “gade”, I should say, as it’s another Danish term.


Lykke, according to Meik Wiking and his team at The Happiness Research Institute in Copenhagen, recommend that in happiness, or “lykke, largely comes down to creating more “flow” experiences – that is, situations where we lose our sense of time, and our sense of ourselves.


“This is it!”, I think! I know about “flow”, it’s the term I use to describe my yoga classes, but also those other moments when I’m dancing, or playing, or having other “peak experiences”.


It’s when you’re completely in the moment, there’s no ego, no pride, no fear of looking silly – in fact, you’re not even aware of how you are being perceived at all, you’ve lost all self-consciousness because you’re engaged in what you are doing at that moment.


Lykke (pronounced “loo-kak”) is my new inspiration, and I want to learn more.


I always think the best way to learn something is to experience it first hand, and by some weird twist of fate, later on today, I had my “lykke” moment.


I’d been joined by one of my favourite walking partners for a stroll down the beach and a Dirty Chai Latte at Bumble at Bee (one of the perks of being self-employed, I have to admit).


The walk started with a rainbow, which could not be more apt for that moment, and it ended with a cuddle on a little beach next to the marina, which has been named Pirates Cove by some creative beach graffiti artists.


The light on the water, the warm rays of sunshine, the view over the estuary, the company, the moment – all was utterly mesmorising, and I found myself “having a moment”. This is “lykke” I think.


I am filled with gratitude and joy, “the word in yoga is “santosha”, and often eludes me in winter, but it’s here, and I feel lost in time.


Afterwards I’m a little dazed and confused – it’s almost December and I’m lying here sunbathing. I’m meant to hate winter! What’s going on and who is this imposter who has taken over my body? I’m quiet, I’m still, I am in awe of everything around me, and I totally “get it” that life really is about the little things, the moments that take your breath away.


I’m not on a beach in Goa, barefoot in the sand drinking a mojito watching the sunset. It’s a Tuesday morning in Exmouth, I’m 5 minutes walk from my doorstep, and I’m in a state of bliss.


The little moments, with the right people, enjoying the simple pleasures in life, the ones that light us up, this is achievable.


I feel I’m only just scratching the surface though. There’s so much more to this “lykke” business, and I’m inspired to learn more. Apparently, there’s six pillars of happiness I still need to read up on (and try out), so I’m on a mission, but that’s for next week.


For now, I’m off to light a fire, pour myself a glass of Malbec, and enjoy another lykke moment, this time on my own.


So until next week….

1 Day Wild Beach Retreat


Spend a day of wellbeing and nourishment in this stunning setting overlooking the beach, enjoying the all the natural health benefits of the sea air, under the guidance of Yoga and Wellness expert Gillie Sutherland.

gillie wild


This day has been designed with the concept in mind that “the closer you are to nature, the healthier you are”. You couldn’t get much closer than this, and with expert tuition and a full day of health and wellbeing, you’ll be feeling fabulous by the end of the day

The day will include:

wild beach walk

  • Sunrise Yoga and Morning Meditation session
  • A Wild Beach walk and talk session
  • Cookery workshop and lunch, followed by a talk on seasonal nutrition
  • A cosy atmosphere to unwind with healthy refreshments available all day
  • Wild Yoga at sunset with the option of a wild swim, followed by a hot tub!
  • Hot Cacao and Candlelight meditation session to close the day

exmouth sunset


This will be an intimate group of just 8 people, so you can be assured of plenty of personal attention and interaction, and plenty to learn to take home with you.


The Beach House in Exmouth enjoys one of the best locations in the area, on Foxholes Hill, with stunning sea views. It sleeps 20 people, but we have it for the day. With it’s touch of luxury, it provides the perfect balance for the day of “wild” and “cosy”.


The cost of the day is £80, and includes all your refreshments, plus a lavender eye pillow to take home with you.


To book visit and click on Special Events.







Yoga at the Castle with Live Cello


Celebrating one year of Yoga at the Castle…

The perfect pairing of yoga and live music in the most spectacular of settings at Powderham Castle.

If you were lucky enough to catch our impromptu cello-accompanied yoga sessions over the last year at the castle, you will know what magical effects can be achieved when we combine these two modalities.

Jo Hooper is a local cellist, who also married at Powderham Castle, and as a seasoned yogi, has been attending Yoga at the Castle since it started a year ago.

What started as a random idea of playing live music to accompany Gillie’s flow yoga class, has evolved into a regular occurrence at the Wild Retreats at Powderham.

For this very special one-off class, Jo has created some magical music taking inspiration from some of Gillie’s seasonal playlists, and she will be accompanying the class which will be held in the stunning State Dining Hall which has the most wonderful acoustics.

The effect of sound on both our body’s biochemistry and our nervous system is a well-established concept, and to experience whale sounds played on a cello right next to you is a wonder to behold.


This is a special Christmas event, celebrating not just the holiday season, but also one year of Yoga at the Castle. After the class we will be enjoying some festive refreshments and a chance to chat to Jo, Gillie, our host AJ Courtenay, and the rest of the students.

Date: Monday 11th December 2017

Time: 6.45 – 8pm (plus time for drinks afterwards)

Cost: £15 per person

To book go to and click on Special Events


yoga jo cello





Meaningful and practical application of ancient techniques for today’s busy lives and differing physical and emotional needs.


Yoga is evolving, we have very different bodies and lifestyles to those when the original yogic texts were written.


We tend to sit in chairs, move in a very two-dimensional way, and we have developed a number of bad postural habits, as well as mental afflictions which have left us with “steady bodies and active minds”, a stat of being “tired but wired”.


This workshop has been designed by yoga guru and wellness writer Gillie Sutherland (Flow Yoga Devon) to move you from “Steady Body, Active mind” to “Active Body, Steady Mind”.


Gillie has over 25 years experience in the field of wellbeing, and holds a BA (hons) degree in Human Movement Studies. She also spent a year in India studying Yoga and Ayurveda, so brings a unique blend of science and spirituality to her work.


You will learn techniques to bring the body and mind back into balance, using yoga asanas specifically designed for the modern body, pranayama (breathing techniques) and meditation.


Although this is a practical workshop, it will also be educational, so you can gain a better understanding of how to apply these techniques into your everyday life.



Date: Saturday 2nd December 2017


Venue: Venue: Ocean Physio, Woodbury Business park, EX4 4QN


Cost: £25


To book visit and click on Special Events or for more information email


07530 012 490







YOGA MAGIC (with foam rolling)



Unlock tension using the foam roller, mindful movement and somatic techniques, and free your body and mind from stress.


This a unique workshop designed by Gillie Sutherland, a yoga teacher and wellness expert with over 25 years of experience, for people who want to gain new tools for healing themselves.


Sometime we don’t even know where the blockages may be, where we hold onto our tension, and how that creates problems in other areas of the body, as well as the mind.


This workshop will take you on a journey of self-discovery, where you will find out for yourself through conscious awareness, how to bring your body into it’s natural state of balance.


The results may include a reduction in pain, better mood, improved posture, and more energy.


A foam roller is needed for this session, and this can be ordered for you on request for an additional £15, or you can purchase your own. The roller is yours to keep, as well as a programme of moves for practice at home, and see even more benefits.


Date: Saturday 25th November 2017


Venue: Ocean Physio, Woodbury Business park, EX4 4QN


Cost: £25


To book visit and click on Special Events or for more information email


07530 012 490








Glow Yoga!!



glow yoga imageWe have the power to create light even on the darkest days….choose to shine!!

Silly season starts early at Flow Yoga Devon, don’t be down about the end of summer, instead embrace the turning of the seasons and get your glow on!

This is yoga but with glowsticks and done with a smile on your face!

This is a very unique class, nothing too serious, I’ll be supplying glowsticks and a great playlist, you just come with an open mind and be prepared to have fun.

Come and get your glow on!

Places are limited so booking is essential. As it will be a longer class with props, it is £12 per person.

Get booking now here.

Autumn News…forming new habits, bringing friends, and having fun with glowsticks!


Namaste lovely yogis,


A few exciting things to tell you about coming up next week, including…






All the details of each



As you will have noticed, we are definitely into the season of Autumn, and just like starting a new school term, it can be a great time for a fresh start and putting into new habits into your life that are going to be good for you.


We’re in the run up to Christmas now (sorry for mentioning it!), so there’s not that long to get things back on track in time for the stresses and frivolities of the silly season. Taking care of yourself in the turn of the seasons and in the run up to winter is more crucial than ever.


So now I have freed up some time to be offering some private sessions again, as well as a good schedule of classes, I have some options for those that need a little kickstart.


NB I only have the first two packages available for 6 people due to my own time and schedule.





If you’re new to yoga or nervous about coming to your first class, or just want some more specific guidance to make sure you’re getting the most out of your classes, this is for you.


3 x 1-1 sessions plus 4 general classes for £120 (SAVE OVER £50!)


These sessions need to be taken over the course of the next 6 weeks.


To book please email me




If you know what you’re doing, you’re coming to classes, but maybe not that regularly, and you want to commit to the habit, as well as get some personal guidance on your practice, this is for you.


11 weeks of unlimited classes plus a 1-1 session with me for £120 (SAVE A LOT!!)


These sessions need to be taken before December 17th 2017 when I will be closing down for the holiday season.


To book please email me




This is for everyone!


It’s always a lot easier to stay motivated to show up in the winter months when you have a buddy to keep you accountable.


Next Week I will be offering for one week only the opportunity to bring a friend for free. Just book as usual and they come for free! (They may reward you with a treat afterwards, you never know!).


To say thank you if they decide to commit to a block of 4 classes or more, I’ll credit you a free class.




Silly season starts early at Flow Yoga and that means it’s time to get the glowsticks out!


There will be no class running at Powderham Castle on Monday 30th October 2017, but instead I am running a Halloween Special at Ocean Physio in Woodbury.


What better way to avoid the “trick and treaters”? J


This is a very unique class, nothing too serious, I’ll be supplying glowsticks and a great playlist, you just come with an open mind and be prepared to have fun.


There will be the option for going out afterwards for drinks too.


Places are limited so booking is essential. As it will be a longer class with props, it is £12 per person.


Get booking now here.


Please also note that I am now requiring people to sign in on arrival, as for fire regulation purposes, I need to know who is in the building. You’ll need to tick whether you’ve booked online, or paid in cash, so please make sure you have booked in for that class prior to arrival to get the reduced rate.


Finally, if you are enjoying classes, or have recently attended an event you enjoyed, I would really appreciate it if you could leave a review on my page or on the booking site.


In the next week or so, I’ll be sending details of some exciting workshops coming up as well. Watch this space.


As always, sending love, light and gratitude to all you special people


Gillie x