by Janette Grant 6th August 2017
I was taking a walk with my two dogs this morning and was doing my best to be mindful whilst walking. On the way back, passing a little beach café, I spotted a swarm of tiny ants moving a big potato crisp across the pathway. To them, it must have been the equivalent of a group of us moving a car by hand across a carpark! I stood and watched their progress for a while, amazed at the determination to take the food back to their nest and their ability to co-ordinate the lifting and carrying of it!
Apparently there are ‘leaders and lifters’ – one which scouts the terrain and organises the lifting and direction by pulling in a certain direction and the others follow. After standing there for a few minutes, making sure no-one stepped on them and ruined their progress, I left them as they got to the side and walked away smiling and uplifted by this simple demonstration of co-operation and determination – we could all learn from it! And I wouldn’t have noticed this herculean task at all if I’d not been walking along practising mindfulness.
Mindfulness sessions help athletes to develop mental edge
7th August 2017
This is an article from the American Psychological Association which expands on the concept of mindfulness being beneficial in the success in sports. The article explains how it helps athletes to prepare psychologically to develop a mental edge and improve performance.
Be mindful to notice the view and ‘smell the roses’
by Janette Grant 9th August 2017
Today, I drove along the lakefront in Garda, practising mindfulness as I drove. I looked at the wonderful view of the lake, I listened and sang along to the music on the radio and felt the sun on my shoulders and the breeze in my hair with the top down in the car. I stopped to let out cars from side roads and smiled at the people when stopped at pedestrian crossings. When I arrived at Castelletto I remembered to be grateful for the last space in the car park. I walked along the lake with my dogs mindfully aware of all the lovely houses and when by the time I’d stopped at a local bar for a cappuccino and croissant I had several messages and emails come through on my mobile, but I was mindful of what was in front of me, put the mobile away and sat gazing at the view and watched passersby, really savouring the froth on my coffee and the tasty breakfast. I have just arrived back home and now feel so uplifted that I can calmly deal with any work issues today!
‘In the end, just three things matter: how well we have lived; how well we have loved; and how well we have learned to let go’ Jack Kornfield
The above is a quote taken from The Mindfulness Journal by Corinne Sweet, which is a favourite mindfulness book of mine : The Mindfulness Journal – Amazon It has lots of quotes and exercises to help us become more mindful.
Mindfulness and sex
10th August 2017
Ok…now I have your attention! Below is an article from the Independent newspaper about how mindfulness can improve our sex lives. Basically, therapists are saying that being more present with each other can lead to better sex; paying attention to our partners should be a given, but mindfulness can help us achieve this.
A mindful walk…?
13th August 2017
‘I wandered lonely as a cloud
That floats on high o’er vales and hills,
When all at once I saw a crowd,
A host of golden daffodils;
Beside the lake,
beneath the trees,
Fluttering and dancing in the breeze………….
For oft, when on my couch I lie
In vacant or in pensive mood.
They flash upon that inward eye
Which is the bliss of solitude:
And then my heart with pleasure fills,
And dances with the daffodils.
- Sounds to me that William Wordsworth was practising mindfulness…..
Loving a broken body
14th August 2017
The following is an interesting article about weight loss posted on the Psychology Today website: A counterintuitive road back to your skinny jeans
Take a look at our Mindful eating to achieve weight loss and sustain it page for further help.
Ruby Wax talking about how mindfulness helped her depression
15th August 2017
This is an interesting article about how Ruby Wax wrote her book about depression and how it was helped through mindfulness.
Here is an extract from the book: ‘When you use mindfulness, you learn to accept things the way they are without trying to change them. It is the gateway to the ‘shit happens’ school of enlightenment. Everyone wants things to be better, but they mostly aren’t, so what are you going to do about it? Have a hissy fit? This is a hard one to swallow, but swallow it you must if you want to go to sleep at night. As the observer, you witness the good, the bad and the ugly without giving a running commentary on whether you like what you’re seeing or not. Once you start doing that, you’ve lost your seat on the sidelines and will be sucked back into the crossfire of words.’
The book is definitely worth a read if you’re struggling with depression.
For more help take a look at our Mindfulness and meditation can help beat depression page.
Will Young becomes Mindfulness Coach!
27th August 2017
This short article tells how Will Young has been practising mindfulness for years and now wants to share it with others
When swallows fly high…the weather will be dry…
by Janette Grant 2nd September 2017
This is what the old folklore says. Well, this video from yesterday during a thunderstorm in Garda shows them sheltering their little bodies from the heavy rain and hailstones! I was watching the storm from the window, taking note of the heavy rain bouncing off the road, listening to the thunder, marvelling at the flashes of lightning and smelling that lovely ‘rain smell’, when I suddenly noticed all the lovely swallows clinging on to every little ledge they could find and just had to get my camera to record it…there was even one holding on to the side of the window…so sweet!
17th November 2017
I love this idea for a short yoga exercise…perfect for this time of year!
Close your eyes and be very still, imagining that you are a snowman (or snow-woman) standing in the middle of a sparkling, snowy garden. You are frozen and completely still. Everywhere around you is covered in crisp, white snow and the sun is shining, making the snow shine even brighter.
Whilst you are standing in the garden, take a few seconds to feel how peaceful it is on this sunny morning. Feel the warmth of the sun on your frozen head and body.
Very slowly, feel yourself melting – starting from your head, feel the snow melting and dripping down onto the frozen ground. Now feel your body getting smaller and smaller, wonderfully warm and ready to move again. As each part of snow melts, your body is transformed until there is only a pile of fluffy snow in the middle of the garden.
You feel very relaxed and still, and no longer a snowman.
And now, when you are ready, wiggle your fingers and toes, stretch and open your eyes.