Summer’s day mindfulness

Posted: 15th Jun 2017

North London street ska beats announce Summer. The nearby urban wetland lakes tinkle. Parkland trees and grasses sway like heavy hips. The practice garden is busting out fullsomeness. There is an ease being outdoors, for many. However, have you ever unpacked how or what makes it so, in the microscopic? Sure, we are familiar with the broad brush strokes of Summer. But have you ever mindfully imbibed a Summer’s day’s heat?

First, take a moment to really notice the texture and sensations of the body to the heat and breeze. Where – and to what extent – is there stickiness or pooling sweat? How does the heat feel – pleasant, sore, sharp or prickly, for example – and where? How is the breeze or shade moderating the heat? Then really get curious about how the heat affects the feelings: uplifted, irritable, lethargic, open-hearted, energetic or dulled perhaps? Then notice any thoughts, familiar or fresh, around your response to the heat, labelling and noting each. How do these relate to the emotions at play? Notice any judgements around these feelings and thoughts, treating them with care and kindness.

This scan can be swiftly registered with movement from shade to open sunshine, indoors to out, across the day. It allows a momentary checking-in with raw sensations, emotions and thoughts with some observational distance to counter any mental over-absorption and fully embrace Summer heat.