Keeping tabs on our physical wellbeing
I belong to a Facebook group called The Village. It’s a group aimed at parents of older children. It’s a supportive and safe space where parents can ask questions and give feedback, most importantly though it’s a place to go so you don’t feel like you are navigating parenthood alone. The Village is always a good place to gauge where people generally are on an emotional level. Recently, a question was posed to the Village asking members to describe their emotions in just one word. The answers were concerning. Deflated, broken, exhausted, overwhelmed, distraught, scared and anxious were just a few of the words used. It just goes to show that perhaps we are not ok.
If you asked me the same question, I think I would use a similar word. For this reason, I have to make a conscious effort daily to keep a firm check on my emotions, and one way to do this is by making my physical health a priority.
For many of us, we feel like we are in the movie Groundhog Day. Every single day is the same, wake up, eat, work, walk, sleep, repeat. Recently, a friend suggested we try and break the monotony by adding a new activity to our routine, so we decided to try a Nia class together. Nia is a sensory-based movement practise that draws from martial arts, dance arts and healing arts. It empowers people of all shapes and sizes by connecting the body, mind, emotions and spirit. Classes are taken barefoot to soul-stirring music. What a treat Nia has turned out to be. Once a week, we all connect through movement with a diverse group of people in terms of age and fitness level. One can’t help but walk away feeling energised and restored. Another thing I have realised through our Nia classes is how much we feed off the energy of others and how refreshing being around people is.
Walking is another practice that I try and put into my routine. I meet a friend early in the morning, a few times a week, and walk around Zoo Lake. We chose Zoo Lake because walking around and around becomes meditative in a way, and more importantly, we don’t have to navigate traffic. It allows us to be fully present in the moment and focus on each other, we really connect, and connection with people this last year has been what I have missed the most. There is also something very calming watching the mist rise off the lake and watching the ducks go about their day.
Most people have put physical self-care on the back burner since Covid, myself included. Feeling guilty initially, I decided that my aching back warranted a massage. And I am so glad I indulged in this guilty pleasure. It was pure indulgence and absolute bliss and an essential reminder that we need to listen to our bodies.
What have you been doing to keep a check on your mental and physical wellbeing? We love hearing from you, and we would appreciate you sharing your daily practices with us.