With everything going on right now, it can be easy to forget about taking some time to yourself to relax. Our team are working together to put on online activities for you to get involved in. We’re updating our ‘What’s On’ calendar with all the information and links you need so check back every now and then to see if there are any new activities to join.
This page is filled with activities and information for whenever you get some time to yourself and want to wind down and relax.
You may feel fine all day, but when it comes to getting into bed at night your minds starts to race and you find it difficult to sleep. We’ve all been there. Our minds become ‘loud’ and it’s difficult to switch them off.
Here are some tips we have been sharing:
- Try and switch off technology at least half an hour before you go to sleep
- Take 10 deep breaths standing next to your bed. Breathing in through your nose, holding for 5 seconds and breathe out through your mouth. Rest your hand on your stomach and feel your chest rise and fall as you breathe in and out.
- Climb into bed and find a comfortable position (in mindfulness we call this your ‘resting position’)
- Start your breathing practice again, in through your nose and out through your mouth. When you breathe out, feel your body soften into your mattress.
- Picture yourself sinking deep into the mattress as your body relaxes each time you breathe out.
- Let your full body relax into the mattress, visualise all tensions leaving your body as you breathe in and out
- Your head becomes heavy on your pillow. As your breathing continues, imagine this is the most comfortable and relaxed you have been while lying in your bed.
- Try and keep your thoughts about how comfortable your bed is, how tired you feel, and continue with your breathing until you are able to fall asleep
For some people it can be hard to switch your thoughts off and your mind may keep wandering. Don’t beat yourself up about it and return to your breathing, the more you continue with the mindfulness practice the easier it will be to switch your mind off and relax into a restful sleep.
Anonymous Pen Pals
At the beginning of April, we launched our ‘Anonymous Pel Pals’ project because we wanted to make sure families were supported and connected. We encouraged family members to write letters and
share messages of support with each other through this difficult time.
Our project is closed now but it is something you can easily recreate – for someone else or for yourself. Write your own supportive messages and encouragements down on a piece of paper. When you feel things are getting too much go back to what you have written to give yourself courage.
You could message someone else who may be struggling with just some encouraging words to help them – it doesn’t matter how long the message is, but just having a lovely thing to read can really cheer someone up.
‘…we will both remember these times as a time when showing love and human kindness was seen as a strength and not a weakness. Things will get better, we will get through this, you are not alone.’
‘We are in this with you. We send lots of love and know that the rainbows we see everywhere are for everyone.’
Together in the Distance
At the end of April, we started a collective art project called ‘Together in The Distance’ and asked people to get creative while at home. Drawing can be a great way to relax and spend quality time with each other. We asked people across Scotland to send us a drawing of themselves to feature in our project.
The project ended in the middle of May and we got some lovely pictures from people. This is something you can recreate yourselves and take some time out to draw and get creative.
We are currently thinking of some new activities and will update this space soon.
#VoicesTogether – Scottish Families Virtual Choir
Our first ever virtual choir launched their first collaboration in May 2020 singing ‘You Gotta Be’ by Des’ree. Thank you to everyone who took part, and thank you to Emilie Boyd for the musical arrangements, audio and visuals.
Meditation and Mindfulness Sessions
Meditation and mindfulness techniques help relieve stress, improve sleep, lower blood pressure and induce a relaxation response in your body. Karran Bonner from Brightside is running free 30-minute meditation and mindfulness sessions every Tuesday morning at 9am. To book onto these sessions email firstname.lastname@example.org or text 07985175457.
You can also access Karran Bonner’s ‘Working from Home Webinar’ here – using the password 7i%q9=08
We all need those moments of just being silly. We recommend trying out ‘Punk Rock Zumba’ – it sounds scary but it’s awesome!