Four Upbeat News Stories Worth Smiling About
Turns out ‘Super Saturday’ wasn’t the only thing to celebrate last week! In this next feel-good instalment, James Gill updates us on some of the inspiring and upbeat news stories from the past week that you may have missed.
MENTAL HEALTH – Make your Mark
https://www.headucate.me/covid-lifeplan/covid-lifeplan-week7Welcome to Week 7 of the Covid Lifeplan; we're going to…
Lockdown has been hell for a lot of people. Mental health has been a huge problem for many, while the grim global statistics make for numbers we will never forget. And so it can be tone deaf to say you’ve “enjoyed” lockdown.
However, for many (including this writer), lockdown has enabled many of us to press pause on life. And author and psychotherapist Mark Newey believes there are valuable lessons to learn for our mental wellbeing; encouragingly, as lockdown restrictions are lifted, Mark believes it’s important to carry on some of those lockdown habits.
On slowing down, he says: “Before lockdown we lived life like it’s a constant sprint! Life is a marathon with an occasional burst of sprint. In order to get into sprint or stress mode, our body is filled with adrenalin, cortisol and noradrenaline to fire us up. When we have dealt with whatever the pressure is, we can slow down and get back into balance. But if we’re in constant sprint mode our mind and body are constantly stressed. We have to learn to take things easy and pace ourselves! The commute can be the most stressful part of anyone’s day. Talk to your boss and see if you can continue to work from home? Cutting out the commute really helps people to slow down and enjoy the extra hours not spent stressed stuck in a traffic jam. If you enjoy working from home, you’ll be more focused and productive, and your stress levels will decrease.”
On a daily routine, he adds: “Routines help us to create an easy, calmer and more comfortable reality. We thrive on order, certainty, habits and routines. There’s been a lot of advice about routines during lockdown, many of us have intuitively become aware of the need to create new order; what might not be so obvious is to take these new routines with us as we come out of lockdown. If you’ve enjoyed cooking, meditation or mindfulness during lockdown then make time in your schedule to continue this activity. For example: simply take five minutes and sit in a chair and just ‘be’. Focus on your breathing, self-reflect and check in on how you feel emotionally and physically. Remind yourself it’s OK to feel stressed or anxious, but consider how you can positively change your mood – and make steps to feel more upbeat.”
Mark, who is the founder of Headucate.me, says of exercise: “Exercise has always been vital for the human condition to thrive. Exercising outdoors is best as it’ll ensure your daily fix of Vitamin D, which is vital for a good night’s sleep. Physical activity also stimulates the release of dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin. These brain chemicals are the body’s feel good hormones and play an important part in regulating your mood and helping you feel more upbeat. Improvements in mood with exercise can be seen after as little as 10 minutes of aerobic activity but tend to be highest after at least 20 minutes.”
To discover more about how to look after your own mental wellbeing, take a look at the Headucate.me website. The site also offers free online advice to help people with their mental wellbeing – to sign-up, simply click here.
FITNESS – Spin when you’re winning
You almost have to admire the pure chutzpah (if you’re not yet au fait with “chutzpah”, Google it: you need that Yiddish gem in your life. Oh, and that’s a silent “C” – we don’t want you getting that wrong once lockdown is lifted). If people aren’t yet allowed in gyms or fitness classes, why not take the gym and the fitness class to the people?
That’s the ingenious and upbeat thinking at static – one of South London’s leading boutique cycling studios. static (that lower-case “s” is testing me) is hosting a new open air spinning experience – in collaboration with Black Cab Coffee – with the outdoor class series available to book now. Crucially, all bikes are two metres apart, and there’s a comprehensive cleaning protocol in place between classes.
With only five people per class, you’ll need to secure your place in advance – so click here to book now.
HOSPITALITY – It’s all about the confidence
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Today the AA has announced a new scheme for #hospitality, designed to give you confidence once the industry re-opens. Look out for this #CovidConfident mark when planning future visits to #hotels, #bandb, guest accommodation, #restaurants and #pubs, #selfcatering properties, #camping, #glamping, #holidayparks, #hostels, visitor #attractions and #golfcourses. Find out more using the link in our bio.
Many of us want to get away (heck, some of us simply want to run for the hills right now). Yet, understandably, people are nervous about whether it’s safe. Which is why AA has launched its AA COVID CONFIDENT scheme.
More than 200 hospitality businesses – including hotels, restaurants, self-catering properties, campsites and more – have been accredited as “AA COVID CONFIDENT”, with Devon, Cornwall and North Yorkshire as the three counties with the most accredited establishments at the time of writing (perhaps unsurprisingly, given the Holy Trinity of tourist hotspots are no strangers to hospitality).
Simon Numphud, Managing Director at AA Media, says: “At this crucial time for the hospitality industry, as businesses work hard to get back on their feet, the number of registrations to the AA COVID CONFIDENT scheme demonstrate our industry’s commitment to customer and staff safety. As people start to book holidays and days out, we hope the AA COVID CONFIDENT accreditation will support the public in making informed decisions with confidence.”
To be eligible for the AA COVID CONFIDENT scheme, establishments can apply here.
DIVERSITY – Just the start
#MoveForTheCulture on 20 June was a one-off international day of upbeat cultural celebration and fundraising. However, it is hoped to be just the start. #MoveForTheCulture celebrates black cultures within the fitness industry, and highlights the lack of diversity within the industry – something BALANCE has also been looking to address.
Launched by the Head of Fitness at FitXR, Ianthe Mellors, the day saw people within the fitness industry host classes on their platform to fundraise for organisations supporting the black community and fighting racism. The plan is for this to become the norm throughout the fitness industry, rather than a one-off. You can find out more about Ianthe here.
Got a good news story? Email James on firstname.lastname@example.org