for uncertain times
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In these challenging times to keep the body healthy, the immune system strong and the mind balanced is key. Here I share 3 simple practices to support self care. I started this page during lockdown, to share short videos with practices of self shiatsu, other healing arts and mindfulness, suggestions and inspiration.
- enjoy -
- practice 1 -
In this video there are the 2 segments of Self-massage:
Energetic self-massage (standing up) - 20 mins
Soft self-massage (sitting) - 22 mins
Do it as one session every day
Do part 1 in the morning and part 2 in the evening or before bed
- practice 2 -
These are 3 Chi Gong exercises for balance, energy and stability. I added some voice guidance so you can easily follow while doing it. This is a short 3 mins excerpt of my own longer practice, you can do it for longer. Try do it each morning to start your day even if you do it for 5 or 10 minutes each day.
- practice 3 -
This is a practice to help find safety in the body and to ground, to deal with the deep fear, anxiety and trauma. You can use it for crisis / emergency situations or do it every night before bed. You can also do this laying down in bed.
- Root breathing
- Simple self massage of face, head, shoulders, arms, and the soles of the feet
Harmonizing Chaos and Quiet Regeneration (Jin Shin Jyutsu)
These are very very calming and help regeneration of the nervous system. The effect is almost immediate and can be done for long, several times a day as needed, either seating on the floor, on a chair or laying down. In the video I do all the steps so you can follow along. Once you learn the steps you can do it on your own.
Daily Practice Suggestion
practice the discipline of making your practice a regular part of your daily life.
You can do a session with all 3 practices as a daily practice,
or keep it simple and do only 1 practice for a couple of weeks, every day, then move to the next practice.
Notice how you feel before and after the practice.
Write in your journal if you like.
Music is healing. Here are two mixes I made for Shiatsu treatments that are deeply relaxing. You can simply lay down and receive the sound, or you might choose to move with the music, allowing your emotions to express through your body and movement
THE ART OF WELLBEING
- nourishing body and mind -
'The present moment is the substance with which the future is made. Therefore, the best way to take care of the future is to take care of the present moment. What else can you do?'
THICH NHAT HANH
thyme and ginger tea
Vit D, C and Zinc
eat fresh vegetables
watch the sunset
focus on mindful simple tasks
practice self care
play and smile
THE ART OF BEING HOME
- sugestions -
A home retreat or the art of solitude are ways to reframe the imposed lockdown and self-isolation. Take time to meditate, contemplate, notice the quality of your actions. Pay attention, be mindful, even when you make your bed or do the washing up. In true solitude we are part of everything.
Either you are an artist or just want to learn something new, do it now. Could be painting, colouring, music, singing, a photo diary, create an essencial oil, write a letter to a loved one, a dance, reading a book, design that website that has been waiting, whatever it is, take this time to express yourself and free your imagination.
Journaling and memoirs
Journaling is a great way to keep track of your days, your emotions, your thoughts, you can note what is happening at this time, the things that are important to you, the moments from your past that made you who you are now, the turning points, the intentions you want to bring into the future.
If you are lucky enough to have a garden or a tree near you or even a house plant, connect with it, with care and respect. Ask to step into their field, and listen. The Earth is in need of our attention, and it starts with the simple actions near us, wherever we are, in the city, by the sea or on a mountain. Sow some seeds and care for them each day.
What are you grateful for today? Perhaps someone was kind to you, or you seen a beautiful sunset, or listened to the birds, or someone told you they love you. Whatever it is, take notice and take it to your heart. Take any opportunity to be kind, kindness matters.
FOR CHALLENGING TIMES
"This is a time of mystery and uncertainty. Take a breath. The veils of separation are parting and the reality of interconnection is apparent to everyone on earth. We have needed this pause, perhaps even needed our isolation to see how much we need one another.
Now it is time to add our part.
The Bodhisattva deliberately turns toward suffering to serve and help those around in whatever way they can.
This is the test we have been waiting for.
We know how to do this.
Time to renew your vow.
Sit quietly again and ask your heart: what is my best intention, my most noble aspiration for this difficult time?
Your heart will answer."
- Master, how can I face isolation?
- Clean your house. Deep down. In every corner. Even the ones you never felt like, the courage and patience to touch. Make your house bright and cared for. Dust, cobwebs, impurities. Even the most hidden ones. Your house represents yourself: if you take care of it, you take care of yourself too.
- Master but time is long. After taking care of me through my house how can I live isolation?
- Fix what can be fixed and remove what you no longer need. Dedicate yourself to remending, embroidered the rips of your pants, sew well the frayed edges of your dresses, restore a furniture, repair everything worth repairing. The rest, throw it away. With gratitude. And with awareness that their cycle is over. Fixing and remove outside of you allows you to fix or remove what's inside you.
- Master and then what? What can I do all the time alone?
- Sow. Even a seed in a vase. Take care of a plant, water it every day, talk to them, give it a name, remove dry leaves and weeds that can suffocate it and steal precious vital energy. It's a way to take care of your inner seeds, your desires, your intentions, your ideals.
- Master what if the emptiness comes to visit me?... If fear of sickness and death come?
- Talk to them. Prepare the table for them too, reserve a place for each of your fears. Invite them to dinner with you. And ask them why they came from so far to your home. What message they want to bring you. What do they want to communicate.
- Master, I don't think I can do this...
- Your problem is not isolation, but the fear of facing your inner dragons, those you always wanted to take away from you. Now you can't run away. Look them in the eye, listen to them and you'll find out they put you against the wall. They isolated you so they can talk to you. Like seeds that can only sprout if they are alone.
"Without opening your door,
you can open your heart to the world.
Without looking out your window,
you can see the essence of the Tao.
The more you know,
the less you understand.
The Master arrives without leaving,
sees the light without looking,
achieves without doing a thing.
In pursuit of knowledge,
every day something is added.
In the practice of the Tao,
every day something is dropped.
Less and less
do you need to force things,
until finally you arrive at non-action.
When nothing is done,
nothing is left undone.
True mastery can be gained
by letting things go their own way.
TAO TE KING
Did you know that to put your feet up on the trunk of a tree is a great self-care exercise for calming and grounding?