Mental Health Awareness Week. Where does this fit in the World of Yoga?
And is this purely due to the lives we live nowadays? Everything is moving so fast. Everything is so much more instant which ultimately raises the expectation not only of ourselves but others too. There is no leaving work at 5pm and being done for the day. Technology has made us contactable 24 hours a day. No wonder stress is on the up. Large Corporate Companies even have work stress related policies and provide employees with access to counsellors as well as other therapies to deal with the challenges and daily pressures.
But stress doesn’t stop here does it? Our children are under immense amount of stress too, which then has a knock on effect on the whole family. Fundamentally, should children be under this amount of stress? Are SAT’s that important when they haven’t even reached Secondary school age? It really hit me when I recently saw the amount of pressure that my partners 10-year daughter is under whilst preparing for her 11+. These children are studying and being tutored for a year before sitting the exam. I can barely remember taking my 11+ to get into my local Grammar school. I was too busy being a 10-year-old!
Its not just work or exam pressures that bring us stress today. Social pressure is a growing concern too. Social media is a powerful weapon in todays World for all ages. Its very often used to tell happy stories. Portraying the good things in peoples lives that they want to share. This of course should be a lovely thing but can quite often leave another, who may not be experiencing the same happiness or good fortune, sad and even lonely.
Is our World pushing and moving so fast that we have simply forgotten how to live? How to enjoy? How to appreciate and how to be content with just being? Do we ever actually see the beauty and the life in the world that we live in each and every day. Can we just breath!
We have become slaves to our mobile devices, phones, laptops, ipads. What really happens when we just let go of this, even for an hour? Absolutely nothing. I have noticed more and more in my yoga classes that people are looking for relaxation more than the actual physical aspect of the asana/ practice. I am continually being asked “can we do a whole class like the last 10 minutes/ Savasana?” And I am continually adjusting my teaching practice to relate and provide the space my students need to completely relax and let go for that 75 minutes. That precious 75 minutes that some can only allow themselves once a week. It may only be once a week but the results are undeniably there. Giving your mind that space to connect with your body and your breath in your practice, will ultimately raise your spirits, identify with any physical or emotional feelings that have surfaced and supply you with the tools to deal with these feelings. Growing stronger and stronger with each practice. Becoming increasingly more present and letting go of the cause of your stress Really, what are you waiting for??