The Effects of Covid-19
The last six months, since the start of lockdown due to Covid-19, have certainly had their challenges. It has been surreal for many. I still find myself asking how and why did this happen. There was no prediction or anything - it just arrived and caused chaos all over the World.
Many have experienced loss of a family member or friend, the fear of going out, loss of income leading to anxiety or depression and much more. Having my twin boys at home 24/7 and having to be teacher, disciplinarian, friend, play-mate and parent was stressful and I am only feeling the after affects now. Monitoring the amount of time playing computer games (important for keeping in touch with friends) vs home schooling (extremely important to provide them with some sort of education). Sending them back to school today was a special moment.
Nature has benefited in many ways, although I worry about the amount of plastic now being produced and discarded daily for PPE purposes. Where is it all going? Will our oceans suffer more?
Let us reflect on this time and remember what is important.
On a positive note, our gardens have flourished. The extra attention as we 'Stayed at Home' has proved effective and the meaning of Take Time To Smell the Roses, really came home. We could not rush anywhere and we could take time to do what was important. Talk to the family, bake cakes with the children, go for walks with the dog, speak to family and friends instead of dropping the odd text.
A Rosebud Meditation
A New Year, new resolutions, thoughts, ideas, wants, needs - a perfect time to take stock of where we are and where we want to be in the future. Taking time out to meditate can be so therapeutic and essential to our busy lives.
A Rosebud Meditation is something you can do at times you might wish you were stronger or wiser in order to better deal with life’s experiences.
Give yourself some time to sit and meditate. Focus on your breath as it enters and leaves your heart.
Visualise your heart as a rosebud. Choose a colour for your rose and spend a moment imagining its soft petals and intricate beauty.
Then reflect on the qualities you wish to develop in your everyday life – strength, wisdom or calmness.
Imagine that each rose petal embodies these qualities as it unfurls and opens in your mind’s eye.
Breathe in and out, imagining that the fragrance of the rose is filling you with these attributes.
When you feel stronger, wiser or calmer, let the petals of your rose close gently within your heart.
You might like to visualise this rosebud whenever you wish to deepen these qualities.
Mindfulness for Mums by Yvette Jane.
A wonderful book, filled with many positive and thought provoking quotes - worth the read.
Are you getting enough Vitamin D?
Public Health England now advises that everyone takes a vitamin D supplement equivalent to an average daily intake of 10µg (4 drops).
Vitamin D contributes towards:
The normal absorption/utilisation of calcium and phosphorus
The maintenance of normal bones and teeth
The maintenance of normal muscle function
The normal function of the immune system
The normal growth and development of bone in children
"Mindfulness is simply being in touch with what's going on inside and outside your body and mind." (Mark Williams)
We so seldom take time out these days, whether that be for ourselves or spending quality time with our families and friends. It is important to learn to 'just be'! Having started Seasonal Yoga in September last year, I have become far more aware of breathing and how important it is to simply take time out to breathe. Breathe in from the nose and out from the mouth, ensuring you are breathing deeply from the stomach rather than the chest. You can do this whilst driving, standing at the school gate waiting for the children or sitting in a meeting. It just allows your body to slow down and to be less anxious.
A very interesting article in Waitrose Weekend (5 January 2017), outlines the following ways to boost your mindfulness :
I would add to this - having a complimentary therapy. Whether this be a massage, acupuncture, reflexology, facial rejuvenation or any other therapy that works for you. It allows you have that very important 'me time' and many of these therapies work the whole body, enabling that very important detox. With the aid of drinking plenty of water, it can help to kick start the immune system and restore balance in the bodily system.
Stress, Anxiety and Depression present one of the greatest challenges that our society faces today. They make life feel really hard and in the long term, they can lead to serious mental and physical health problems.
Reflexology induces a state of relaxation which, in turn, may allow for improved healing and well being. It offers time for clients to reflect and to talk to someone on a confidential and non-judgemental basis. Often a listening ear and a few suggestions of coping strategies may just give you the strength to take control of your life again.
I have just completed an amazing course on Mindful Reflexology with Sally Earlam of the AOR. The holistic approach can make such a difference. Call me on 07866 389356 to book your appointment.
Take Time to Smell the Roses
Wherever I go at the moment, the common phrase from people I come in contact with, is "I wish I could just have some 'Me Time'". We are always so busy. Life is busy. Things take over and before we know it, another day has come and gone. Having time for yourself just to 'Be' is so important and will benefit you and everyone else. Do something YOU LOVE - whether it be gardening, meditation, going for a walk, reading a magazine or book or just sitting and taking Time to Smell the Roses.
Wonderful weather for Gardening.
A great therapy for your body and soul. Take Time to Smell the Roses and to experience some 'me time'. Getting one's hands in the soil and reaping the rewards of weeding and pruning is both mentally and physically therapeutic.
The Sunshine Vitamin
Vitamin D regulates the absorption of calcium and phosphorous and is important for normal growth and the development of bones and teeth. Make the most of this glorious sunshine and get your natural intake of Vitamin D (whilst obviously being sensible to protect your skin).
Reflexology can work on specific points on the body to suit your needs.
I started doing Seasonal Yoga in September and I have found this to be very therapeutic and a wonderful way of stretching the body and balancing the mind. Taking time out to sit still and meditate can often put life into perspective and allows the stillness the mind requires.
Reflexology is a wonderful treatment at this time of year. We are able to work on specific reflexes relating to your condition and needs. By working on the adrenal glands, the treatment can help to improve the body’s energy flow. At this time of the year, our digestive system can often feel sluggish. Reflexology is a wonderful detoxifying treatment which improves circulation. It is suitable for all ages.
I thought I would share this extract taken from:
‘Seasonal Yoga’ by Susan Woodd and Julie Hanson
The Season of Winter
Winter is a time of retention, reflection and introspection in order to regenerate and develop the imagination, yet retain a sense of curiosity and adventure. The water element is all about stillness and contemplation, invaluable in order to see where life is taking us and to develop a sense of inner peace in the hectic pace of modern life.
Water is linked to body fluid and bathes the brain, cleanses the mind and enhances memory : the kidneys and bladder regulate water in the body. Energy also comes from the adrenals, which are linked to the kidneys.
Eight Priorities for Winter
1. Winter is a time for hibernation with lots of opportunities to rest. Retire early, rise late and sleep for 1 – 2 hours longer. Health can be greatly enhanced in the winter by going to bed earlier.
2. Start winter in a relaxed state of mind. It is a time of reflection to look back over the year. Did you meet your goals? What lessons did you learn?
3. Keep warm and wrap up well. Keeping your back and feet warm is crucial at this time of year.
4. An opportunity to slow down and conserve your energy. Look on this as the time for storing power for the next thing you want to do.
5. Take total responsibility for how you feel on a daily basis. Understand that it is natural to feel fear, notice threats, assess risks and respond appropriately. Find ways to discover courage, or just feel the fear and do it anyway.
6. Be careful and take care of yourself, work on self-trust and learn to discriminate when it is appropriate to pull back and when to engage.
7. Be aware of any fears or apprehensions which are preventing you from moving forward and deal with them.