Doncaster woman shares her thoughts on meditation and how it can help mental health

A Doncaster woman believes meditation can help everyone.
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A column by Lisa Fouweather.

When people think of meditating, a stereotypical image of a ‘hippie’ type figure, legs crossed and hands posed, is likely to come to mind.

This image can put a lot of people off even entertaining the idea of meditation, for it can be seen as very ‘wishy washy.’

Lisa is encouraging others to find help in meditation.Lisa is encouraging others to find help in meditation.
Lisa is encouraging others to find help in meditation.
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People might say things like ‘I find it impossible to just sit in total silence, so how can I meditate?’

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The good news is that meditation incorporates so much more than the image we see being portrayed in the media.

It isn’t reserved solely for a select few people, it is for everyone, with its many forms making it highly accessible.

Whilst meditation for some people does take the stereotypical form, for other people, it could take form in gardening, walking, art or cooking.

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Anything that allows you to ‘escape’ from your thoughts for a little while, is meditation.

For me, mindfulness took the form of a hike in the Peak District on Saturday morning.

To say the conditions were not great on my hike would be the understatement of the century.

Sub-zero temperatures, wind, ice, and snow, all made my climb up Kinder Scout a hike to remember.

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The conditions meant that I was so focused on getting to the summit that no other thoughts were in my head other than ‘are we nearly there?’

It was only after the walk that I was able to appreciate what a meditative experience the hike had been for me, it gave me some much needed respite from my anxiety and over thinking, if only for a few hours.

Such respite allowed me to recognise that there will come a day when I am no longer ruled by my mental health, and that, there will come a day when I can enjoy the little things again, rather than stressing about such mundane things all the time.

It was this experience that led me to write this short column, because I think it’s important that people remember that, you can practice mindfulness in many ways, even if you don’t find meditation in its simplest forms ‘doable.’

I know that a lot of people find it impossible to clear their head of all thoughts and just sit with their pure consciousness, which is what the practice of traditional meditation demands.

Alternative meditation however is so much more inclusive, and so much easier to achieve a state of ‘zen.’

I encourage you to take some time out to think about what activities you can engage in to enter a meditative state.

You should look for things that make you lose track of time and make you forget to check your phone.

Once you have found your meditation, do it often, enjoy it and never let it go.

In these confusing and worrying times, local journalism is more vital than ever. Thanks to everyone who helps us ask the questions that matter by taking out a subscription or buying a paper. We stand together. Liam Hoden, editor.