Welcome to this weekly online resource. Wellness professional Jo Foster, offers self care tips through her insights on mindfulness and positive psychology, her weekly online yoga classes and nutritious recipe recommendations.
This week we are getting curious about the practicalities of mindfulness in daily life.
Life is a dualistic experience and by developing deeper self awareness we firstly increase our capacity for calm and joy, but as a part of that will need to face up to the more sensitive and painful aspects of our lives.
By developing a "move towards" approach towards emotions such as frustration, anger and fear, we allow for an understanding of what triggers these feelings and what behavioural patterns they fuel. This understanding enables us to make better choices and regain control, so that we may move away from the negative drivers and towards the positive motivators.
In contrast, if we attempt to disregard powerful emotions, we perpetuate negative behavioural patterns. We may develop unhealthy behaviours, such as excessive drinking, overeating eating, acting out, isolating and withdrawing from relationships. We may also seek out and engaging in unhealthy relationships. Ultimately, by attempting to protect against painful feelings we also disconnect from feelings that bring self respect and true happiness.
This weeks mindfulness exercise is about letting pain and anger 'be seen'.
Talk to anger and let it go, by Dr Patrizia Collard
Find a peaceful place and sit comfortably.
Wrap up in a blanket to keep warm and light a candle if you like.
Feel your feet firmly on the ground, rooted, your buttocks and lower back supporting you, hands resting in your lap. Let your facial muscles go loose.
Notice your breath and allow your body to 'breathe itself'. Sit and experience each breath when it enters your body and observe how it leaves.
When you are ready, experiment with mentally moving towards your anger. It may be a barrage of words or a feeling; it may have a colour or shape form. You may even feel, by allowing though about it to arise, that you are becoming more agitated than before, but this is perfectly normal.
Now ' talk' to your anger, lying some thing like "I want to understand you. it's ok to experience you. Give me your all. I am just going to sit here and watch. I''m listening. I am not going to react."
Keep focusing on your breathing and allow the breathing to follow your anger. Let the patterns naturally change if that is what you are experiencing. Resist holding your breath. Keep relaxing your body.
Continue this for a while and see how you experience 'being with' discomfort. Remember, this too will pass.
Finish the exercise when you feel the right moment has arrived.
My veggie patch as been bit of a flop this year, but this is a good one for using up the prolific courgettes and green beans (substituted for the corn).
Chickpeas are a great source of folate which promotes healthy cell regeneration and manganese which supports many bodily functions, including the metabolism of amino acids, cholesterol, glucose, and carbohydrates. It also plays a role in bone formation, blood clotting, and reducing inflammation.
Chickpeas are also a great source of protein and fibre which help stabilise blood sugar levels and satiate your appetite for longer.