Monday 13 August 2018

Introducing; The Wee Retreat

"Mindfulness is one of those things that is tricky to put into words. We like to think that being mindful is a bit like playing hide and seek… the part that when you are hiding, listening to someone counting down and then coming to find you! At that moment you are aware of the sounds around you, looking out for the person coming, feeling your heartbeat in your chest and experiencing each moment as it unfolds. You are not wanting to change anything about that moment or judging what is happening; at that moment you are fully present. This is being mindful."

I have dabbled on and off with mindfulness for a few years now; I have done a few group meetups along the way, downloaded a few apps and attended a couple of work courses, but nothing has quite helped make it into the habit I would like it to be. Like many, I think it just became something added to a list of 'to do' that then just niggles at you as you haven't actually done it! Fast forward to now and spending all my time with Arthur I am definitely aware that I haven't found a moment to be just me, take a little snap of time just for myself and switch off a little. When the chance to team up with the lovely Vicky at The Wee Retreat came along I knew it was just what I was needing.

Starting at the end of this month and based in Cathcart Parish Church in Glasgow's Southside, The Wee Retreat is an 8 week course in mindfulness that is designed to give people a sense of peace- exactly what I am after. MIndfulness meditation has been shown to reduce anxiety and stress while serving as a tool that can be used in everyday life and that is exactly what the course aims to do. Vicky is keen to show people the different forms mindfulness can take and help establish it within our routines. Having taken Mindfulness up herself a few years back for the same reasons I am keen to try it now, she wanted to find that escape from a hectic and busy life and make time for herself while learning a new skill. A mother of 2 and an educational psychologist on the side, She is really passionate about introducing people to the practice in a variety of ways; by running retreats, 1:1 classes; group sessions and more. She is even running mindfulness parenting classes which is something I am keen to look into after as I can already tell I am going to need all the help and calm that I can get! Being patient isn't a quality of mine and I know how much I am going to need to survive the toddler years...

Even just a quick meeting with Vicky allowed me to remember the importance of taking time for myself, to connect and feel calm as life really can feel so hectic all the time, so I am super excited to see how the full retreat is. I am hoping to be able to reconnect with myself a little and allow myself to be present in the moment much more. I cant be the only one whose mind instantly races to their to do list instead of just enjoying things as they are? I feel sad sometimes lying playing with Arthur but the back of my mind is running down my huge to do checklist instead of really focusing, so I hope The Wee Retreat can help just that.

“Meditation is having a full-blooded, authentic experience of ourselves as we are, being able to observe ourselves and accepting everything, absolutely everything about ourselves.”
-       Suryacitta Malcolm Smith

 I will be sharing my thoughts after each Saturday class over on my instagram so keep an eye out on there for updates. I will post a review after completing the course too, but if you fancy joining me on it there is still time to sign up. tickets are available here.

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