A Doncaster woman shares her thoughts on meditation and how it can help mental health

A column by Lisa Fouweather.

When people think of meditating, a stereotypical image of a “hippie” type figure, with legs crossed and hands raised, is likely to come to mind.

This image may deter many people from even having the idea of ​​meditation, as it can be considered very “desirable”.

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Lisa encourages others to find help in meditation.

People might say things like “I find it impossible to sit in complete silence, so how can I meditate?” »

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The good news is that meditation incorporates much more than the image we see portrayed in the media.

It is not reserved for a privileged few, it is for everyone, its multiple forms making it very accessible.

While meditation for some people takes the stereotypical form, for others it can take the form of gardening, walking, art, or cooking.

Anything that allows you to “get away” from your thoughts for a bit is meditation.

For me, mindfulness took the form of a hike in the Peak District on a Saturday morning.

To say the conditions weren’t great on my hike would be the understatement of the century.

Sub zero temperatures, wind, ice and snow made my ascent of Kinder Scout an unforgettable hike.

The conditions meant I was so focused on getting to the top that no other thought was in my head other than “are we almost there?”

It wasn’t until after the walk that I was able to appreciate what a meditative experience the hike had been for me, it gave me a well-deserved respite from my anxiety and excessive thoughts, if only only for a few hours.

Such respite has allowed me to recognize that there will come a day when I will no longer be ruled by my sanity, and there will come a day when I can once again enjoy the little things, rather than stressing about such trivial things all the time.

It’s this experience that led me to write this short column, because I think it’s important for people to remember that you can practice mindfulness in many ways, even if you don’t find meditation in its simplest forms “feasible”.

I know that many people find it impossible to clear their minds of all thoughts and sit with pure awareness, which traditional meditation practice requires.

Alternative meditation however is so much more inclusive and so much easier to achieve a state of ‘Zen’.

I encourage you to take the time to think about what activities you can do to enter a meditative state.

You should look for things that make you lose track of time and forget to check your phone.

Once you find your meditation, do it often, enjoy it, and never let go.

In these confusing and worrying times, local journalism is more vital than ever. Thank you to everyone who helps us ask the questions that matter. take out a subscription or buy a newspaper. We are all struggling together. Liam Hoden, editor.

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