Take-off and take five
Holidays are so important. They are a rare opportunity to escape the stresses of today’s frantic world; to truly relax and spend quality time with the ones we love. And, in our opinion, there’s no better place to do this, than on the Isles of Scilly – a secluded sanctuary where you can relax with the sound of the sea as your soundtrack and an abundance of natural beauty to explore.
But how can we stop our worries and stresses from following us on holiday? We asked mindfulness expert Danny Penman for his top tips…
Sit back. Breathe. Let your mind wander.
From yoga gurus to number-crunching CEOs, mindfulness has the world talking. A foil to the stresses that bombard us all daily, advocates claim this ancient practice can improve both your mood and your overall well-being.
Mindfulness is something anyone and everyone can benefit from. Whether you’ve had a hard day in the office or you’ve got a holiday waiting in the wings, taking just a few moments to loosen up can work wonders for your well-being. By becoming more aware of your mind and thoughts, you’ll learn to recognise negative thought patterns as they crop up and watch them melt away.
Whether you begin your holiday peering through the clouds or setting sail across the ocean; the journey to the Isles of Scilly is where your escape from the everyday really begins. So it’s the perfect opportunity to put some mindfulness techniques into action, to start as you mean to go on and make the most of your time away.
To help you get into holiday mode, we’ve included some simple steps, courtesy of Danny Penman, co-author of the bestselling Mindfulness: A Practical Guide to Finding Peace in a Frantic World, to help you get holiday-ready – from the inside out.
- Sit up straight in your seat and bring your back a little way forward so your spine is self-supporting. Put your feet flat on the floor and allow your hands to rest in your lap. Gently close your eyes.
- Focus your attention on your breath as it flows in and out of your body. Stay in touch with the different sensations of each in-breath and each out-breath.
- After a while your mind may wander. When you notice this, gently bring your attention back to your breath, but don’t give yourself a hard time. Realising your mind has wandered and bringing your attention back is central to the practice of mindfulness.
- Your mind may eventually become still like a pond – it may only be fleeting, or it may not happen at all. Don’t search for it, just let it happen and whatever you feel just allow it to be what it is.
- If your mind wanders again, always gently bring it back to your breath. After a few minutes, allow your eyes to open. And take in the view.
Set sail and set yourself free
With the option to fly or sail to the islands, getting there couldn’t be simpler. You could hop over for an invigorating one-day escape, or book a longer restorative break. Plan your trip today, and you start dreaming about white sand beaches and crystal clear waters straight away – and start putting the mindfulness meditation into action.