Wordless Wednesday – time for my creative mindfulness journal #365daysofselfcare – 10 August 2016
Hope smiles from the threshold of year to come, whispering ‘It will be happier…’ Alfred Tennyson
I don’t make resolutions in the conventional sense of ‘New Year, New Me’ as I think the pressure of expectation often makes people fail. I just believe if you want to change something whether it’s big or small, just do it. Pick a day, start and try your best… it doesn’t have to be on 1st January either. It’s also important to remember that small changes count just as much big ones; everyone has to start somewhere… and this year in 2016, it’s about carrying on, finding more happiness and new adventures.
In many ways, 2015 was a terrible time which had a massive impact on me – my friend Steve died very suddenly, which had an overwhelming impact on me mentally, physically and emotionally. I’m still working thorough this and getting myself back to where I want to be. Then my role changed at work very suddenly and there are huge rearrangements next year across the organisation, so there’s on going uncertainty. I have no idea what I’ll be doing and where I’ll be at the end of 2016. But I know My Chap will be by my side holding my hand (metaphorically too) – he’s my rock. My family and my pals have been great too (mostly). I’m a happy person generally, but my resilience, energy levels and health have taken a major hit in 2015. But, this trauma has reminded me about what I believe…. Continue reading
Much of this year has been very difficult for me mentally and physically, especially after my friend died in April 2015. A couple of weeks ago I saw the #100happydays challenge – http://100happydays.com/
I decided to have a go – it’s pretty simple really…It’s asking
- Can you be happy for 100 days in a row?
- Every day submit a picture of what made you happy!
- It can be about anything or anyone.
- It’s a way of getting in touch with the moment you’re in
- People can submit photos privately too.
My flowers and garden have brought me so much solace this year during such difficult times; my garden has been my sanctuary. The Great Gardens (like Tatton, Helligan, Bodnant and Dunham Massey) we’ve visited have helped too as well, as have all the beautiful flowers from all gardening bloggers across the world. I’ve been getting back into yoga (it helps my back trouble) and have been doing some mindfulness practise too. And of course, my friends and especially my Chap have supported and loved me.
I hope doing this will remind me of things, people and experiences that help make me happy. I’m definitely getting back to where I want to be.
1/100 – mini dahlia in a very mini milk bottle
I found this flower lurking among the slug-ravaged leaves. I wrote about it here
2/100 – blackberry vinegar
We had huge amount of blackberries from both my mum’s and my friend’s gardens so I froze some for crumbles and other puddings I decided to have a go a blackberry vinegar; it was very easy to make and it’s hidden away in the cupboard infusing.
I’ve got to wait a couple of weeks before the next stage; it will need straining, simmering with some sugar and decanting into smaller bottles and apparently it will last for years.
3/100 – acorns in my friend J’s hands
I went to see my pal J, who’s on maternity leave waiting for her baby to arrive. We talked about growing an oak tree to mark her baby girl’s birth. She and her husband have decided that they’ll take the sapling to be planted in the National Forest in Derbyshire. It needs to grow for a couple of years first (just like their baby) before they can plant it out. Isn’t this a wonderful idea? Find out how to grow your own oak tree here:
4/100 Mindfulness and Wellbeing Rooms
I’ve been doing mindfulness at work (and at home) which is definitely helping.
Find out more about mindfulness which is an ancient meditation technique and also how it is used within Mindful cognitive behavioural therapy – http://mbct.co.uk/ and the Guardian wrote about it today (20 October 2015) by Jon Kabat-Zinn, creator of the Center for Mindfulness in Medicine, Health Care, and Society at the University of Massachusetts Medical School who brought mindfulness concepts to the West in the 1960s.
I’m very fortunately that there are many wellbeing classes I can attend at work, like mindfulness, as well as counselling (there are lots of stressed students). Also, I’ve started tai chi and am doing yoga again which helps with my chronic back trouble. I do Iyengar yoga, which is very good for people with injuries, and the teachers have to study for about three years before they can teach it to others. More information:
- Manchester District Institute of Iyengar Yoga including classes
- Elsewhere in the UK – Iyengar yoga UK including classes
I started practising yoga nearly 10 years ago and it has made a big difference to my life. I’ll write about more about yoga another time.
5/100 a visit to Dunham Massey with my pal C
My friend C and I have birthdays close together so we usually go out for the day. It was a glorious sunny day so we went to Dunham Massey – which is owned by the National Trust. Dunham Massey is a Georgian mansion, near Altrincham with a beautiful garden (including a walled rose garden) a deer park and a saw mill. It’s a wonderful place any time of year, lovely walks too and a lot to see. As you’d expect from the National Trust, it’s got a couple of fine tea rooms and their cakes are great too.
Until 11 November 2015 Dunham Massey is Stamford Military Hospital where they have recreated the first world war hospital where over 300 soldiers recuperated from 1917-1919. I’ve been twice – it’s a very powerful evocation of the soldiers’ situations, lives and illnesses recreated with actors.
Come back again for the next instalment of my #100happydays challenge – it’s mostly about Lisbon
- This Post
- 6-13 Photos – Lovely Lisbon
- 14-20Photos – food, music and Victoria Baths
- 21-28 Photos friends, food, drink, flowers and yoda
- 29-34 Photos deeds not words inspiring women love
- 35-41 Photos – love, food, poetry, learning and travel
- 42-49 Photos – family, food, friends and-adventures
- 50-54 Photos – Cottonopolis WI and-Christmas films
You can follow my photos for #100happydays challenge on twitter feed everyday (@becinmonton)
Anyone around the world can get involved in #100happyday or just have a look for the hashtag or on facebook too.
What has made you happy today?