Winning The War Inside Ourselves
I firmly believe that as we develop from child to adult, the biggest threat we face in terms of stress overwhelm versus living a life of health and happiness, comes from our lack of inner knowledge. Every culture, every single one of us has work to do on our mental wellness.
As a case in mind but in no way singling any country out, here in Korea its impossible not to notice a stigma associated with ´not being able to cope´ with the mental demands of either school or worklife. Stress is usually mentioned in private conversation or discussed on radio channels, but without any real mention of proven practical tools or ways to deal with it. Those who do not cope with the mental demands of school or work usually feel somewhat shamed. They bottle it up, usually with harmful or devastating consequences. But recently here I have seen that minds and hearts are opening - a handful of good mental wellness initiatives are starting to seed, which is so encouraging and will provide self-care tools for the hard-working people here, up and down the country. We are in it together.
Positive attitudes to mental health (or as I prefer to call it, mental wellness) lead to extra human energy, potential, creativity and contribution. An all-inclusive benefit for all. On the flip side, we have all at some stage, whatever country we come from, experienced some form of stress, anxiety or depression. Unchecked - these can lead to burnout, or maybe worse.
When working with open-minded schools, colleges and businesses globally and now locally in Korea, I have been able to circumvent myths about mental health, and get life-enhancing mental wellness coaching to children, young adults and the workforce, to teach the Power of Breathwork. Compared to other therapies, the yogic techniques involved in my short sessions are welcomed by gate-keepers to youth or corporate wellness training. It enables me to get a foot in the door and share the potency of this sophisticatedly simple healing therapy, for everyone.
Breathwork alone, in my view, is no less powerful than any other mental health healing modality. It teaches mind calming, physical healing and emotional awareness skills to children, young adults and business professionals alike. It brings health and a longer life. The photo above (pre-pandemic) shows me teaching my 3-step Pyramid Breathing technique - as represented by the pyramid sign I am demonstrating to the class. Students love it when they practice either first thing, at lunchtime or towards the end of their day. It helps them to turn inwards, perhaps for the first time ever - and realise that their stress and emotional anxiety is connected to how shallow, or deeply, they breathe. I teach the simple science and the art of the technique, which unlocks the power behind it. People are shocked to see how calm and controlled they feel within seconds. It is theirs to use for life. Currently I provide these classes globally via Zoom link, starting from 45 mins upwards. One of my class members once nicknamed me the Teacher of Peace. I like that. TOP :) If you are reading this as an individual, education or business owner, and are breathing but want to do it better, healthier - and clearly understand why it brings peace to your every moment, please get in touch.
Ian Matthews Healthy Minds Coach & Founder Zenbok Mindful Cultivation of Resilience & Wellbeing www.zenbok.org