Overcoming the fear of meditation

Have you ever sat down with the intention to meditate but felt immediately put off by the idea?

Has this experience stopped you from ever meditating again?

Or do you simply find it to be a strange experience to sit quietly with yourself, having your eyes closed for the few minutes?

If you replied yes to all of the above, then you are not alone!

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Gong and Sound Baths – The Sound of the Summer?

Number of people attending gong bath events more than doubles on Eventbrite as the UK bathes in the healing vibrations of sound to relax and meditate

Gong and sound baths – enjoyed by celebrities and royalty such as Gwyneth Paltrow, Charlize Theron, Robert Down Jr and Meghan Markle– could provide the sound of the summer if the latest event data is anything to go by.

As the UK emerges from lockdown, attendance to gong bath sessions on ticketing and events platform, Eventbrite – where participants are immersed in the vibrations of instruments – is growing fast and has more than doubled (> 115%) from the first quarter of 2019 to the first quarter in 2022. The number of gong baths on Eventbrite has also nearly doubled, growing by more than 80% (again comparing Q1/2019 with Q1/2022).

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Why do we find it so hard to enjoy the repetitiveness of everyday life?

From my recent observations, I have noticed that some people find it extremely difficult to enjoy the often repetitive routine of everyday life. Of course, everyday life looks different to all of us but for the most part, it always involves waking up, hopefully eating breakfast, getting ready and getting on with our day, whatever that might entail.

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Mindfulness: Making time to be kinder to ourselves

Since I began learning and understanding the concept of Mindfulness three years ago, I realised that a big part of it relies on Mindfulness based self compassion. This loosely translates as being mindfully kinder to ourselves, noticing when our mind has started turning negative and slowly but surely turning it into a positive state.

There are many activities that we can do, to help us become more compassionate to ourselves. Journaling out our thoughts and feelings, and practicing gratitude are just a few examples. There has definitely been a lot more press coverage around self-care and while it is necessary to prioritise ourselves, we need to break the constant taboo about this being seen as a selfish act. After all, we can only be our best selves for others, when we are at our best.

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Mindfulness: Are you living in the past, present or future?

Do you often find yourself thinking about what happened or went wrong yesterday, or what you have to do tomorrow?

When we think too much about yesterday, we miss out entirely on the present moment. While our body maybe present, our mind could well be thinking about your to do list for tomorrow.

It’s extremely easy and normal to get caught up in these thought processes because our brains are wired to focus on the negatives that have happened or could happen either side of the current moment. We end to live in fight or flight mode 90% of the time. By practicing mindfulness, we improve our self awareness of these thought processes and can slowly re train our mind to feel and be more present.

While staying present might not feel safe for some (those who have experienced trauma of any kind, need to check with a professional if practicing mindfulness is safe for them), for many of us, it can alleviate our anxieties of all past and future.

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