Qigong is an ancient Chinese healthcare approach that combines
physical postures, breathing techniques and focussed mindful attention.
It also assists you to build regular habits that bring you a feeling of
vitality and energy. The word Qigong (Chi Kung) is made up of two
Chinese words. Qi is pronounced chee and is usually translated to mean
the life force or vital-energy that flows through all things in the
The Gong relates to regular practices. One interpretation of Gong
refers to a 100 days of continuous practice of something. Eg 100 days of
eating breakfast in the morning. Or 100 days of sitting still for 5
minutes with a cup of tea at the start of the day. 100 days of
meditating for 20 minutes. The practice demands that if you break the
habit before the 100 days, you begin the one hundred days all over
This of course is a semantic, because you are trying to achieve a
long term habit, at the end for the 100 days, or series of broken
patterns of 100 days the likelihood is that whatever you decided to do,
you want to do everyday for the rest of your life anyway!
Qi Gong asserts that it is discipline that helps us build the long term habits that free us.
When we have begun a new term, we have such great intentions. The
pressures and the busy-ness of the start of term, can sometimes seem to
steal away those great intentions and break habits. What would you like
to develop and sustain? What would bring more life force and vitality to
you if you did it every single day?
If you would like to learn more about building your vitality,
mindfulness and greater life balance, we are running a one day retreat
entitled “Still Conscious” Email us for details.
In most situations in our lives, if we believe that we can improve ourselves, then we feel better. Pursuing higher levels of fitness can benefit us both physically, emotionally and mentally. It seems that having this so-called Growth Mindset, is unconditionally good. However research reported in the journal, Social Cognition last year suggests otherwise.
Researchers in Oklahoma found that women who believe they can be more beautiful by changing their appearance, have a much higher risk of anxiety which is related to their looks, than those who are more accepting of themselves as they are. Such women were also more likely to be interested in cosmetic surgery, according to this study. The same effect was not observed in men. The media may be a big factor.
The presentation of very specific body types and shapes as “the desirable norm”, often with images have been changed technologically, sets a bench-mark which for many women is completely unobtainable. The conclusion is that it is better for your mental well-being to accept yourself for who you are and how you look, and to challenge the stereotypes presented in the media, and any self-talk that unfavourably compares you with those images.
I don’t know about you, but if you have been in the UK this summer, you might have had a few struggles with the weather.
I’d looked forward to the promise of blue skies and strong sunshine.
Somehow in the halcyon days of my youth I recall long hot summers with endless beautiful days.
The reality was probably very different. We’ve a tendency to cherry
pick “peak-moment” memories, which is kind of a blessing in itself.
Being more “present” these days than I have been in my past, I tend
to really take the time to notice, feel and enjoy the weather whatever
it offers. Even embracing the wet days, knowing the garden vegetables
will be enhanced by the rain.
A few months back, I was working with a client who had particularly unresourceful associations with the weather.
I’ve a regualr meditation practice, which takes many forms. One of
the meditations I do is to focus a feeling of loving kindness on my
clients, friends and family, as well as others.
In morning meditation I took the weather as my focus on behalf of my
client and was interested to find what emerged after the meditation.
“Let got expectation” was the message that came through.
Letting go the expectation one has of the weather being wonderful, allows you to accept more readily how the weather is.
It led me to a series of meditations where the idea of “what cannot be controlled” seemed to emerge.
Over a series of lovely practices, which were really very blissful, I
was left with a series of phrases which resonated for me and also for
my client when I shared them:
- “There is no such thing as bad weather, just inappropriate clothing”
- “Yield to the condition of that which cannot be changed”
- “You can’t change the weather but you can change: your plan, your attitude, your shoes”
- “The weather in your head, is your choice”
Then one day in June, I saw a post on Facebook that reminded me of an old old adage and it made me smile:
It was an image of a statue of The Buddha. With the words next to the image:
RELAX, NOTHING IS IN CONTROL