Beyond the Mat - Resources for Self-Care
Updated: Mar 20, 2020
This is a period of our collective history where there is, without a doubt, fear and uncertainty. BUT THERE IS STILL possibility, hope, and joy.
We have opportunities to turn in to our breath, and return to our bodies. We can play and enjoy the home-based hobbies we love most. We can be in nature, and drink in the pages of the books we've been meaning to read. We can slow down the pattern of living.
I have slowly been putting together a list of resources that might be helpful for meditation, yoga / yogic breathing, listening pleasure or relaxation, or entertainment during this time.
Turn off the news. Reduce your attention or use of social media. Turn toward nature, the arts (music, books, poetry, and movies), and look out for those most vulnerable in this time. Offer appreciation to the workers doing their best to care. Support the small businesses around you that may struggle as traffic to their services decreases.
Note: if you have suggestions on what might be added here, I am more than happy to add. The more, the merrier! Updated on 3/18/20.
Breath and Body Awareness audio recordings
In all the practices I have learned, breath and body awareness (sometimes with a little light movement) have helped me calm the mind and cultivate clarity. Perhaps one or more of these 3 recordings will do the same for you. If you have shifted to working remotely, as a practice of social distancing, perhaps these will also help amid the change in habits for your day-to-day.
approx 5 minute audio recording - breath and body scan
approx 7 minute audio recording - breath and body scan
approx 11 minute audio recording - breath and body scan with light movement
The Awake Center and Mindful magazine are producing the Mindful Living Summit from March 19 - 22 online at https://www.mindfullivingsummit.com.
I prefer Insight Timer - but I know many people that use Calm daily. There are options for music, guided meditation, and/or use of the timer. A timer could be used for meditation - or to be sure you take a movement and stretch break during the work day.
Meditation Community Groups
Brown University Center for Mindfulness - 3x/weekly virtual community meditation (free): https://www.brown.edu/public-health/mindfulness/class/three-community-mindfulness-meditation-sessions-available-zoom-and-telephone?
Yoga Live Streaming on Facebook
There are many options - but check out my home studio: https://www.facebook.com/AllThatMatters
If you have not discovered On Being and all the team offers, I can't say enough good things. Maybe now is your time to check it out. They have curated a specific listening list for these uncertain times.
Ambient music playlists
Nature Noise (Spotify)
Ambient Relaxation (Spotify)
Electronic Ambient - Saman (Spotify)
Long Ambient albums x2 from Moby (moby.com)
Quiet Quest (YouTube)
Even without social distancing, what an incredible opportunity to visit galleries or experience the opera and concerts which you may not otherwise. Maybe you will find a new love.
Metropolitan Opera (NYC) offering streaming during their closure: https://www.metopera.org/about/press-releases/met-to-launch-nightly-met-opera-streams-a-free-series-of-encore-live-in-hd-presentations-streamed-on-the-company-website-during-the-coronavirus-closure
Museums that offer virtual tours - so you can explore from your home: https://www.travelandleisure.com/attractions/museums-galleries/museums-with-virtual-tours
I consistently have a pile of books next to my bed for reading. GoodReads is the app I like to use track what I am reading, and what books I want to read. I love the virtual reading list. My current reading list:
The Pearl Thief by Elizbeth Wein - https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/31178738 (downloaded to read electronically from my local library)
Mindfulness in Plain English by Henepola Gunaratana - https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/64369
McMindfulness: How Mindfulness Became the New Capitalist Spirituality by Ronald Purser - https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/44795391