I’m sure that there are many of you out there, like me – mothers, with kids now at university/beginning their first jobs. Suddenly the frantic emotion-filled days of exams are over, it has become easier to close the doors on those empty bedrooms and finally, you take a breath, look around and say, “What now?”
My own, “What now?” led me to an 8-week mindfulness course, which in turn led me to train to become a mindfulness teacher. I was so excited by the benefits of mindfulness that I wanted other women to experience that same sense of reconnection with the self which mindfulness can give you. It is a gentle way to explore what your body and mind need to begin this new stage of your life.
One of the first things I became aware of was how much tension I hold in my body. The body scan meditations were a great way of learning to recognize and release that tension. I have also recently begun Pilates to help with my posture and back pain. During the first couple of classes I felt so clumsy and self-conscious that I wanted to cry, but as the weeks have passed I have become more able to focus on what I am doing in each moment and worry less about what I look like. It’s liberating.
The 8-week course was a great starting point for my mid-life journey. In a small group of women, we were able to offer each other support, laugh about the things which irritate us at home and gain a real sense of community. One woman surprised her family by refusing to wait for the usual latecomers before serving Sunday lunch. When they finally arrived they were horrified that everyone had started without them, but she calmly explained that each week she has had to struggle to preserve a spoiling meal through their thoughtlessness. Another woman said she now had more patience when stuck in traffic and would use the extra time to take a breather before starting her busy work day.
Not everyone has access to a mindfulness class in their town, which is one of the reasons why I decided to offer online coaching, to give other women the support which I have experienced through mindfulness and to teach the techniques which can be used for the rest of our lives.
So, if you are wondering, What now? and would like to reconnect with yourself, then you are very welcome to join me.