Being with others, being in our bodies, and being out of lockdown
An interview with Spike Warwick by Caf Fean
I’m a bodyworker, or a body-mind practitioner. I specialise in working with people wanting to soften and resolve experiences of persistent pain, anxiety and trauma.
Wellbeing is important for quality of life, and for those we love! We know so much these days about how feeling good: having repeated experiences of joy, contentment, love and connection with ourselves and others leaves lasting traces in neural structure and function. When we feel safe, satisfied and connected, our brains work differently; our immune, digestive and hormonal health is better; the world feels more inviting and friendly; and we can learn, create and empathise with others. People feel good being around us, too. And, perhaps surprisingly, these are the most significant indicators of healthy ageing – more so even than what we eat or how much we exercise.
PICTURE: Caf Fean
For me, wellbeing means feelings of peace, gratitude and love. And being able to enjoy wholesome experiences such as eating good food, moving in nature, laughing and being sociable with others.
I swam and walked a lot, practised natural movement yoga every day, meditated, and cooked lots of tasty meals during lockdown. I talked to friends and family as much as possible, and attended online seminars with my favourite body-mind mentors. And sometimes I just lay in my bed 🙂
I’m very happy to be seeing clients again now as so many people have been starved of safe touch during this time. I’m following the guidelines from my awarding bodies which include, but aren’t limited to, lots of cleaning and sanitising of all touch points in between clients, thorough room ventilation, new protocols around soft furnishings and equipment, masks, symptom checks and so on. I’ve had training on the extra protocols and it’s been more straightforward than I anticipated, although I’m sad not to be able to see anyone in a risk group for coronavirus at the moment.
When I look out of the window I see the sea, green trees and the sky, and I feel grateful and glad!
My wish for us all, is that we keep growing the good stuff and making the changes that will benefit the generations to come
My biggest surprise during lockdown has been the kindnesses of strangers and neighbours: people showing so much support and goodwill towards each other. Not so surprising really, as we’ve evolved to be compassionate, but it’s been a wonder to see it in action, and to hear so many inspiring stories.
I’d love us to tell our grandchildren how communities pulled together in the face of tough times, to share with them the acts of compassion, courage and creativity that happened; the things people said about how they discovered what was most important to them; the thousands of small and enormous ways people cared; the wisdom and calm strength that emerged, all the tender heartfelt moments… It’s a bittersweet story, and an old one in many ways.
My wish for us all, is that we keep growing the good stuff and making the changes that will benefit the generations to come. For myself, that I continue to grow into that wizened old witch on West Hill who has a warm heart and will do her best to help you towards your own precious wellbeing.
I treasure many things, but I’m particularly attached to the ceiling rope I hold onto when using my feet to do a massage Thai style!
I’m offering online sessions to soften pain, anxiety and trauma symptoms, as well as to learn positive neuroplasticity. The great thing about doing sessions that way is I can record the tailored, individual practices as audios and send them to clients afterwards.
Spike’s Top Tips
Different things work for different people, but safe relating with others, if it’s available, is at the top of the list.
BE WITH THOSE YOU TRUST
We regulate each other’s nervous systems, so being around someone you trust and who makes you feel good is a real tonic.
Moving together with others is particularly good – dancing, walking, swimming, playing sports…
BE IN NATURE
Being in nature is fabulous if you can.
TAKE A BREATH
Starting small, I’d say remember to take a breath every so often through the day to savour an ordinary beneficial moment: a sip of a water, a beloved pet, a neighbour’s smile.
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