by Catriona Murray
One thing which I have noticed in my short (3 year!) time as a student practitioner is how often we forget to breathe, or rather, that we forget to breathe fully and deeply.
As a child my father used always to say “take 3 deep breaths” before anything scary or intimidating … I always took that as a turn of phrase. Not so! For me, those 3 deep breaths have become one of the most important ways of centring and calming, whether I am about to give a lecture to the great and the good of Edinburgh, or am simply beset by negativity which I have no idea how to dispel – breathing in to the count of 8 (4 seconds), holding for a bit (another count of 8) and breathing out to the count of 8 – I never fail to be astounded by the power of such a simple action.
How do they do it? Watching a lion prowling the savannah, or a red setter lolloping along Salisbury Crags, the motion is effortless, no muscle tensed or moved that is not required. True flow, and poetry in motion – the lion lazy, the setter efficient and unfettered.
Why is it that we find it so hard to retain this effortless grace and ease of movement?
It may well be that our thinking minds are the problem … stressful thoughts are echoed in the body in a grumpy, scrunched up face, hunched shoulders, a stoop, as we bow to the pressures of life events, hunch ourselves up to look a bit less imposing, or to push down emotions we’re not keen on feeling …
by Catriona Murray
It pays to pay attention to what you eat and also to how it feels to you. Wholewheat is good in many ways, but a delicate digestion may struggle to deal with the very wholeness of it!! Benefits may come from eating skin on apples, cucumbers and peaches, but if you are delicate in digesting there is no shame in peeling!
New “superfoods”, ingredients and diet suggestions emerge all the time, some of them may well be helpful to You. Staying mindful will hopefully help to “separate the wheat from the chaff”.
Let your body speak to you … and combine a physical therapy or treatment with an increased awareness in other parts of our life. That way you can ensure that any benefits from Shiatsu or other massage treatments extend throughout your life, leading to a greater all-round sense of well-being.
Ever notice how the things that we eat and drink can cause tension in your body?
Allow yourself to eat thoughtfully – turn off the music, dim the chatter. Simply focus on each mouthful. Taste it, chew it, feel the texture. How does it feel going down? Are my lips tingling? Does my nose feel a little stuffy or is a slight band of tension emerging across my forehead? These symptoms could mean you are sensitive to something you are eating.
Find out more on the Shiatsu Society website.