Do you find today’s pace of life extremely fast? Everyone is always plugged in, switched on, irritated by the slightest buffering or slow internet speed. Nothing can be done fast enough and there is always so much more to do… does this sound familiar? We are hearing about the rise in insomnia and stress related illnesses. In 2017 UK pharmacies recorded a 2% increase in sales of over-the-counter sleep aids.
It’s really time to S L O W down and B R E A T H E isn’t it?
You might read this and think easier said than done, but I’m excited to share with you five fun and easy ways you can slow down and breathe. With Autumn almost upon us, now is the perfect time to start practising – just look at nature…everything is slowing down, the days are getting shorter, it’s Mother Nature’s cue to pause a little more often.
Are you guilty of only listening to music whilst doing the ironing, driving or tidying and cleaning? Why not just take some time out – STOP MULTI-TASKING – and just listen to some of your favourite songs. Sit or lay back and enjoy and in case you were wondering dancing is allowed!
Autumn is a great time for reflection and a lovely way to do it is visually. Have you got a stash of photos somewhere that will bring back some good memories? Your summer holiday, a friend or family wedding, or perhaps an amazing adventure that you’ve been on. Whether they are hard copies or just on your phone or laptop why not spend some time slowly looking through them and reflecting back. Pick your favourite and spend 5 minutes or more and think what the image conjures up for you using your five senses – sight, sounds smell, touch, and taste.
#3 Savour every bite
Have you ever tried mindful eating? I did as part of a Mindful Self Compassion Course with Kathryn Lovewell and I thought it was amazing and highly recommend you try this. Ideally it’s great to do with a selection of foods of all different colours and textures. Take your time looking at the food, taking in it’s colours and smell before you put it in your mouth. Savour the scents, flavours and textures on your tongue. Chewing slowly. Eat just focusing and thinking about what you are eating. No tv, no radio, no talking, just being with your delicious food. Your stomach and mind will thank you for it. For simplicity you could just do it with one piece of fruit like an apple.
It’s so easy with everything you have to juggle to start to take more shallow breaths. Take just 5 minutes out of your day and sit and breathe nice and deeply. Try counting to 4 as you inhale and the same when you exhale. If you can count for longer then do so but don’t force your breathe, allow it to flow. Breathe and count in your mind so you are just connecting with your breathe and your body. Be aware of your shoulders as you breathe, remember R E L A X. It’s amazing how much better you will feel after doing this simple exercise.
How often do you quickly apply your face moisturiser whilst thinking about a million other things? Try spending just two minutes gently applying to every area of your face and neck.
- Letting your fingers run over your forehead, around your eyes, across the sides of you nose, down onto your cheeks, around your chin and neck.
- Feel every little part of your face, appreciating every bump and smooth part.
- Appreciating the textures of the cream and the scent.
- Breathe freely and deeply as you do this.
- Check in with your body, give yourself just two minutes of relaxation and breathing as you apply your moisturiser.
If you like a silky soft moisturiser scented with Jasmine, Neroli, Mandarin and Sandalwood then my Nourish Face Cream is a delight.
I hope you have found these five quick and easy ways to slow down and breathe useful. Do leave me some feedback and any comments or questions you may have in the section below. If you feel you need more than a few minutes to just S L O W D O W N and deeply relax you might want to book a therapy session with me.
All the best, let me know how you get on and remember take care of you!