Following our lovely Feel Fab detox retreat in Ibiza, I am spurred on to my happiness writing… Watch this space for more regular updates and please do comment and join the debate.
Every time I return from a yoga course, holiday or retreat, I notice how wonderful life is, at so many points of the day, with no prompting, with fresh eyes. It’s the very simple things that can make a difference to the quality of life. We all know that much of every day passes in a blur. We race from one task, chore, and place to the next, constantly thinking of what we have to do, and rarely pausing to notice what is in front of us right there and then. I’m not a die-hard meditator, still like a rock for half an hour a day, but just a few minutes within my morning yoga practice makes a huge difference to how my day pans out. It’s enough time to make me stop, think and see the beauty in the day, the world, the opportunities and the love around me. Doing this regularly in Ibiza, plus a twice a day yoga practice, more than oiled the wheels for a refreshed commitment back here.
For those of you who haven’t tried and remain sceptical, just give it a go. You can sit on the floor, cross-legged or kneeling, whichever is comfortable, or on a simple chair with your feet flat on the floor. Sit somewhere calm, where the view, should you open your eyes, is lovely, where you sense some scope of the bigger world beyond you. The main aim is for your back to be straight, your neck long, and your head steady and comfortable. With your body relaxed, you can let go and ignore it (well, attempt to anyway!). Close your eyes and just notice what’s around you. Sounds, smells, feelings. Notice the thoughts that interrupt. Because they will! Don’t panic, don’t resist them, don’t get cross and give-up. Accept them, let them float on and the next one come. Just sitting still with the intention to switch off for a few minutes is a good start. You need do no more than that… And when you do open your eyes and come back to the conscious world, notice how you feel. How do you feel? And credit yourself with taking the time to consciously switch off – even if you don’t feel that you did, yet…
There are many things that give us perspective in life. Interacting with children and pets, brisk walks and outdoor runs, gardening and the damp earth on your hands, the smell of home-baked food or looking into the flames of the first fire in the hearth in Autumn. All lovely. But we can’t all have all of these all of the time. We can, however, take a few minutes every day just to notice who we are, where we’re going, what we have. To access our inner selves, slow down, switch off, reboot. It’s powerful. It really works.
Seeing the Feel Fab retreaters embrace and respond to their morning meditations so positively was amazing. I hope you’re all keeping it up (?!) and for those of you who’ve not tried yet, give it a go and let me know what differences it makes to your life.
For more information on Feel Fab retreats – visit http://www.feelfab.org/