Susanna Alyce 01263 740392

email: susanna@yoga-meditation-relaxation.co.uk

These links give some background to mindfulness:

Mark Williams. The science of mindfulness 


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The body is home to heaps of movement, especially if it’s a stressful day. Shallow breathing, pounding heart, quivering or tense muscles, churning stomach – these sensations can be a normal part of the ‘drive’ system that gets the to-do list sorted. Or they can arise from a sense of threat, triggering the fight-or-flight system of defence and self-protection.

Channelling some of that ‘doing’ energy into movement can bring benefits.

Choose whether you want to stand up or sit down. Start making circles with your wrists, one way then the other. Notice any creaking or squeaking from within the wrists, stiffness or ease. Take care not to hurt any injured or sensitive joint. Keep movements small or slow, or miss out anywhere that hurts. Notice any thoughts that this movement is triggering – displeasure or enjoyment. Mindfully let those thoughts be here too, but in the background.

Now, use one hand to lightly grip the other forearm and continue to circle. Can you feel what is happening in the elbow joint and forearm to allow the movement?

In a spirit of playful curiosity, straighten out your arm, and carefully explore (if this is available to you) how far the arm rotates from the shoulder. If you start with your palm facing the ceiling, can the arm turn until the palm faces the ceiling again?

Note, this is in the service of experiencing your body, and not to gain a gold medal at the arm-twisting Olympics!

Does this joint feel tense? Maybe we could encourage the kind voice to say “Ooh, that must be sore – are you OK?”. Allow yourself to be led by the wisdom of the shoulders. Go gently: if we are too vigorous we can pull a muscle (I know, because I did this more than once!).

Finally stretch both arms out at shoulder level. Have some fun with turning both arms at the same time, one palm up, one palm down (this is a Qi Gong movement called ‘competing dragons’) – as though your two hands are turning imaginary door handles in opposite directions. As you get the hang of the arm movement, let your whole body join in – neck, hips, weight shifting. Can this flow? Is it fun? What does it make you think of? Notice how your mood is now, having spent a few minutes engaged in mangling your body and mind!

Inspirational Poem

Gil Hedley: Living testament

Your body
is a holy book,
a scripture-

the pages
of your flesh
are marked
in exquisite detail
with the finest hand,

inscribed by spirit
with the poetry
of love,
lessons of mercy,
angelic hosts,

and the story
of your life
perfectly told,

an illuminated manuscript
of a sacred writing
epic in scope,
and grace.

Every hair
on your head
and line on your face,
every rushing tide
of wind and wave
moving you
from within
this living testament
bear witness
to the truth
within you—

Study this text
with conviction then,
reflect with care
upon its meaning,
and enjoy
the divine

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