Self Love Podcast

SLP 270: Align Yourself To Big Energy with Alice Mackinnon

Episode 270
18, Apr, 2023
}70 Minutes

Show Notes

‘Surfing brought joy back into my life and I just kind of sobbed as I paddled out into the line-up and a Brahminy kite was flying overhead, and I just sobbed at the gift of choosing joy again in my life, and the ocean brought it back in for me. Which is what it did when I learnt how to surf at 46 as well. There was just this experience of choosing joy and choosing the wild inside that surfing brings because you are immersed in the ocean and there’s big energy out there sometimes and you get to align yourself to big energy and as your skills in surfing grow, there’s kind of an alchemy that happens where instead of being wiped out by big energy, you get to hitch a ride on it.’ ~ Alice Mackinnon

Dr Alice MacKinnon (PhD) is a mindfulness martial artist. Her work focuses on presenting and practising dynamic, hands-on and embodied practices that take mindfulness from a worthy idea into the rough and tumble of daily life – at work, in the community, and in the home and family. Alice is a long-time practitioner of meditation, yoga, qigong, surfing and fitness – these are the foundations of mindfulness as a martial art in her own life.

For over 24 years, Alice was a professional and community environmental sustainability educator, consultant and communicator. She earned a PhD in Adult Learning at the University of Technology Sydney, that focused on transformative education and multiparty stakeholder negotiation and their potential to create systemic change. The insights gained from that sustained research continue to inform her work today.

At the age of 50 years old, Alice stepped aside from the environmental sustainability field and retrained to gather fitness, yoga, surfing and qigong instructing under the applied mindfulness umbrella. She hosts community and online classes in fitness, yoga and qigong. She facilitates and hosts public retreats and workshops in mindfulness and well-being. She is a consultant and facilitator to business and community organisations in the areas of applied mindfulness, health and well-being, healthy psychosocial workplaces, and emotional intelligence.

Alice collaborates with her wife Jennifer Jefferies, an internationally renowned speaker and naturopath, to host the Smart Sassy Seniors podcast and live events. These are gathering enthusiastic audiences in Australia and around the world.

Alice is also a published author with three books:
“Expanding Green Strategies: Creating change through negotiation” (2009)
“The dharma of surfing: wisdom from the water for life” (2016)
“Surfing as a Dance: How one woman found grace in and out of the water” (2018)
Her fourth book will be released in June/July 2023 and is called “Surfacing: Choosing Resilience, Recovery and Love”.

Alice’s formal qualifications include: PhD, Masters in Applied Science (Social Ecology), Graduate Diploma Education (English and History), Bachelor of Arts (Journalism and Public Relations). She is also a qualified and experienced Fitness Instructor, Yoga Instructor and Qigong Instructor. For six years she was also a Surfing Instructor on the Gold Coast helping mostly middle-aged women grasp their dream of surfing.

Most recently Alice is trained in Trauma Informed Practice, Mental Health First Aid, Gentle Somatic Yoga, Creative Community Recovery Facilitation, Rites of Passage Facilitation, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) and PSYCH-K.

Her definition of Self Love is to just take a deep breath, I think perhaps to back yourself to go I am here. I am here. I have work to do. I have a purpose in being here I will do this. I will show up. I will find what my purpose is. I will do this with curiosity and humility and belief that I am here for a reason. And whatever I need to do whatever paths, guides practices I need to find to help me to do that, I will do.

Her favourite quote is from Leonard Cohen:
Ring the bells that still can ring.
Forget your perfect offering.
There’s a crack in every thing.
That’s how the light gets in.

Links to follow:
Smart & Sassy Seniors Podcast:

Kim interviewed Alice’s wife Jennifer Jefferies on the Self Love Podcast – SHOW 41

I have a brain that loves to study and create
Life these days is about living, weaving and creativity
I have learned to choose joy again
Surfing brought joy back into my life
There’s kind of an alchemy that happens where instead of being wiped out by big energy, you get to hitch a ride on it
You can experience big joy with big energy
I just wanted to find lasting love
Working with the subconscious and on your heart creates
Peel back the layers with kindness
When we are curious, we get to suspend all judgements
Sit beside your emotions and welcome them in
Gently ask yourself questions fearlessly
A good therapist will hold your hand and guide you through the darkest times
We are the midwives of a new epoch
We have a responsibility to embrace this new time
We have the means to make a difference
The breath is the bridge
Ask what brings you joy and lifts the spirit and heart
Follow the path of joy and open the gate


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Welcome to the self-love podcast a show that cracks open your heart and inspires a deeper regard for your own wellbeing and happiness. Expert interviews, ‘how-to’ quickies and deep dive conversations into the heart of our souls, unravelling the mystery, struggles and joys of simply being human.

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