Self-care tools like Mindfulness and Meditation are incredibly helpful when used daily, but now more than ever, are absolutely vital during this Covid-19 pandemic. Recently, as part of the May 1st 2020 National Workplace Wellbeing Day here in Ireland, I hosted a number of online presentations sharing a few techniques to integrate peace and calm into our working-from-home days. Many of the people who attended were from a variety of different sectors, teams working from home for large multi-national companies; teachers, networking groups – even hotel management and their teams.
On one call, 62 people dialed in at the same time! I was delighted. This was a first for me. I am used to facilitating presentations, consultations, retreats and mindfulness training in person (and have done for many years) – but to do this online to such a large audience at the same time, was particularly daunting for me. What if the platform crashed? What if I lost people on the call? I decided to make sure by calling my internet provider, got a few tips from them, then had to let go and trust it would be ok. And it was.
Mindfulness and Meditation Tips
It was great to connect with everyone in this new way. Many shared privately (via the chat box on Zoom) of their positive experiences as well as their struggles and difficulties. I highlighted a number of tools and techniques that everyone could use daily to help bring about balance. The hour went by very quickly indeed!
At the conclusion of the presentation, many said they noticed a big difference in how they were feeling at the start and then at the end. Some said they were calmer, others found their mind was more peaceful and many felt their bodies were much more relaxed – I was delighted.
Here are some of the techniques I shared with the groups:
- Walking Meditation – Every morning I go for a walk. It’s my way of preparing for the day, being with myself and doing something positive for my body. This is time that I schedule for myself to be alone. I remember attempting a seated meditation when I was in my 20’s – turned out to be a disaster for me. It was just too difficult to switch off (I worked in the Hospitality Industry at the time and never knew how to stop). Thankfully I tried again in my 30’s and was introduced to walking meditation. It changed my life.
Walk with even steps and inhale through your nose for the count/length of 4 steps. Hold your breath for the count/length of 4 steps. Then exhale through your mouth for another 4 steps. Hold your breath again for the count/length of 4 steps – and then breathe in for the count of 4 steps, hold for 4 steps, breathe out for 4 and then hold again for 4 steps – and so on. To start, do this breathing pattern for 1, 2 or 3 minutes and build up to 5, 10, 20 minutes. This walking meditation will help you reconnect with yourself and become unstuck from incessant worries or thoughts.
- Breathe Deeply – Try stopping throughout your day and breathe deeply from your abdomen: Take a large breath in through your nose and exhale out through your mouth. Take 3 deep breaths one after the other. Do this when you are waiting for the kettle to boil, or waiting for your computer to start up, while the ads are on TV, while stopped at traffic lights or when preparing food. Breathing deeply really can bring you back to yourself, it also calms your nervous system and helps quickly reset it.
- Special Place – Create a special place in your home where you can just be. Designate a comfy chair or a special cushion that you can sit on and breathe deeply. Let it be your “Relaxation Chair/Zen Cushion”. The rule is, when you are there, no-one is to disturb you. Like a naughty step for kids, when you go to the Zen Cushion, you are taking time out to be with yourself, to breathe and stop for a while. You can deal with requests later (but only after you have had some time for yourself). Your kids/partner can also use the chair/cushion too, when they need time to refocus or relax.
- Night-time Meditation – This is a lovely to do if you are struggling to go to sleep. Prepare for bed. Lie down, make sure you are warm and comfortable. Breathe deeply inhaling in through your nose for the count of 10 and then exhaling for the count of 10. Do this for 10 minutes and allow yourself to drift off to sleep. Similarly, if you wake in the middle of the night repeat this breathing technique. Counting and breathing helps refocus the mind away from worries, helps it to unwind so you can go back to sleep.
Mindfulness and Meditation Presentation Feedback
I am delighted to share some of the feedback I have been sent from the participants about the presentation:
- “Thank you so much for your session today Michelle. It was excellent and so so timely. I’m getting lovely feedback, via every medium, from our team members. I can’t stop breathing deeply!”
- “Again, a big thank you Michelle. M”
- “Hi Michelle, Thank you, it went swimmingly! And the session was so relaxing thanks very much. A”
- “Thank you so so much for offering to host a session with us tomorrow. It is perfect timing for us for something a bit different as we’ve been having a weekly zoom meeting which would have been a bit of a re-repeat this week, as we’ve all now settled into our new routine, so it is just great to have something different.”
- “The mindfulness class was brilliant today!! Thanks a million for organizing it – Michelle is really great! I found the hour just flew and did really help. I’ll definitely be attending again. J”
- “Hi Michelle, it was a lovely session, and I was delighted with the attendance. Thanks for the recording – I will circulate it now along with the details for tomorrow’s meditation. C”
- “Thank you again for your valuable time. L”
- “Thank you for the most beneficial session this morning and for sending on the link to the recordings – it’s already downloaded & on my phone! S”
- “Thanks a million Michelle. Really enjoyed this morning. M”
- “Thank you Michelle, I truly appreciate you sharing the recordings with me. EW”
- “Thanks – really enjoyed it. E”
- “Lovely Mindfulness – thank you Michelle. R”
- “So relaxing, that was lovely, thanks for organizing for us. A”
- “Thank you, that was great. I love Michelle’s voice – so calming! K”
- “I really enjoyed it. Thank you. I love the idea of a Zen Chair. And also breathing deeply when walking. Very calming. R”
- “I am still breathing deeply through my nose – which is great! L”
- “Thank you so much again for an excellent session today. D”
To Discuss Further or to Arrange Online Mindfulness Training For Your Workplace During Covid-19
Call me today on 087-1492338
Mindfulness and meditation results can be seen best after a period of practice and time. Companies who actively engage in providing training programmes in the workplace have seen a significant reduction in workplace absenteeism, stress, as well as an improvement in a variety of health conditions. Contact Michelle or call Ph: 087 149 2338 if you are keen to introduce regular online Mindfulness and Meditation sessions within your organisation during this time of Covid-19 or in-person presentations (after restrictions have been lifted).
If you’d like to join us for an online meditation and mindfulness class – check here for when they are next on! I am offering these at a heavily reduced ‘Covid-19’ rate so everyone can have an opportunity to take part. I also have concession fees as well, please contact me to find out more.
Alternatively Michelle can offer private mindfulness and meditation sessions or consultations. Previously these personalized, confidential consultations were offered either in person in Cobh, Co. Cork, Ireland or at the Natural Clinic in Cork. Due to Covid-19 my appointments are now only available online. We can still work together online via Skype and Zoom from the comfort of your office/home. Feel free to contact me. Call: (Ireland) 0871492338 or (UK) 07857369619 for a chat.
You might also like to help change your mind with one of our MP3 relaxation recordings. For details click here