Well you’ve guessed it I’m a Mum. I’m also a wife, teacher and occasionally just…ME. I’m also a lover of all things mindful and mindfulness related. I am trained to teach mindfulness to 11 – 18 year olds as well as my ‘day job’ of being a History teacher and am very passionate about encouraging people generally to give mindfulness a go.
I started blogging in 2016 for a new challenge… just in case taking care of my toddler twins and their older brother wasn’t enough, as well as juggling a job in teaching too. I am also very committed to ‘spreading the word’ about different ways we can incorporate mindful techniques into our busy lives and like to talk to young people about this. See my website: www.missionmindfulness.co.uk for more information.
What is Mindfulness?
The short answer is that it is an approach to life in order to combat the ‘stress’ of 21st century living and improve people’s well-being.
In very basic terms it is living in the present and being aware of everything around you; experiencing whatever life throws at you with all your senses – taste, smell, hearing, sight and touch in order to stay grounded (you may choose not to be mindful while clearing up sick or changing a dirty nappy but you never know!). Key to living mindfully are the attributes of gratitude, kindness and empathy.
For a longer and more detailed exploration of mindfulness read my posts. This one may be a good place to start….
What’s all this about meditation – sounds a bit ‘neo hippie’ and ‘alternative’ to me?
People who commit fairly seriously to mindfulness tend to meditate regularly in order to train their brains to be more mindful. Mindful meditation has NOTHING to do with religion and is totally secular. It is evidence-based with scientific research having proven that mindful meditation (which is very definitely NOT about clearing the thoughts from your mind but about observing and noticing them) can help with our well-being and to ‘re-wire’ the brain.
There is no harm reading about different mindfulness techniques and taking on board some of the strategies without committing to meditation, however the science definitely shows that those who meditate are more likely to reap greater rewards from their mindful practices.
Mindfulness and Me
I first stumbled across mindfulness in 2012.
It was the summer of the London Olympics but it felt like I was performing my own Olympics everyday. I was regularly beating myself up about being a bad parent to our toddler and having yearned to be a mum for years wanted to actually try and enjoy the day-to-day rather than to be struggling so much…. tears and tantrums were emanating as much from me as from my ‘terrible’ two year old and so I went looking for something to help us all out.
Signing up for an 8 week course with a very nice man who’s name I’ve forgotten (not very mindful of me really!!) was my first step along the mindfulness road and there were definitely some bumps. Initially I was very sceptical. Anyway, he and the Mark Williams and Danny Penman ‘finding peace in a frantic world’ book (their website franticworld.com has some great free meditations on as well) have definitely helped me and I try (and sometimes succeed) to live and parent as mindfully as possible.
This has definitely had a positive impact on my own well being and our family’s happiness.
Anyway, that’s the heavy stuff done. I started blogging in the spring of 2016 and have found it really helpful in keeping me committed to my mindfulness practices. I also hope others find the posts useful and interesting too. I was extremely pleased to write a guest blog for Time To Change fairly early on in my blog’s life and have since guest blogged for Mummy’s Gin Fund and have kindly been given a #BrandNewDay award by Karen at www.twotinyhands.co.uk for my post about attempting to be a mindful blogger. Recently I was also very excited to receive this summer’s TAMBA’s ‘Multiples Matter’ magazine through the letterbox where I had an article published.
Some more mundane information about me:
- mum of 3 little ones, wife of 1 lucky chap (ha ha) and teacher to around 300 teenagers every week
- living in London
- aiming to try to live in, and enjoy, the present
- embarking on blogging about mindfulness and sharing some thoughts on the ‘ups and downs’ of parenting (and probably teaching) in – what I’m hoping is – a non-preachy and non-cheesy way.
I hope you find this blog useful and enjoyable, I certainly enjoy maintaining it! xx