Summer: 2 little tricks to maintain your cool – part 1
How do you handle the heat?
Without checking back on the Met Office site, my own impression of the summer, so far, is that it has been quite moderate heatwise, if a little on the dry side. Now, that may be because I am living happily on the coast in (recent-award-winning!) Ramsgate, with sea breezes to stir any sunbaking heat. Or, maybe, it’s a combination of windows and strategically placed curtains, lurking on the shady side of the street and observing a quiet siesta time around peak sunshine.
If you are feeling the heat, or perhaps, heading off to even sunnier climes, have you thought about some other strategies, beyond the ‘stay out of the sun’ & ‘carry water with you’ ones? ( By the by, I was mildly concerned to be exhorted to carry bottled water with me on train journeys over the tannoy at the railway station the other day. What were the possible calamities awaiting between Ramsgate and Canterbury, I wondered? Answers on a postcard…)
Well, if you do get stuck somewhere hot and humid for a while and are not operating any machinery e.g. driving, or pushing a push chair… or, various other activities come to mind too, like: riding a bike, or a horse…
Anyway, apart from wearing a hat and hiding in the shade, there are some little things you can try. :
1. Reduce the heat generated in your body by reducing your activity.
Yes, you have probably tried to stop running around, but there’s scope to reduce your activity further by changing how you breathe.
Slow your metabolism by slowing your breathing:
- Close your eyes.
- Take a gentle, slow deep breath in,
- hold it for a count of 3
- and let it go gently.
- holding the breath for a count of 5,
- then again for a count of 7,
letting each warm out breath slide away in its own sweet time.
Continue breathing at this gentle pace, noticing how much cooler the in breaths feel, no need to keep counting.
( you can open your eyes again whenever you like, it just helps to focus as you get the rhythm established )
2. Use your body’s responsiveness to your imagination:
- Imagine standing under a cascade of cool water, a shower or even waterfall.
- Imagine the feeling as your hair and head become wet,
- the sensations as the cold water flows over your skin,
- how the water becomes colder and colder,
- washing your body heat away…
- When you are feeling more comfortable, you can let the image go and just enjoy the sensation. It is relaxing too!
#keepingcool #visualisations #coolbreathing
If you are reading this thinking:
“ I am pregnant! and/or “I have (think of a number) toddlers/children to watch and keep up with, how am I ever going to get to do this?”
I have a couple of suggestions to add which might help, Part 2 is especially for you
2 little tricks to maintain your cool – part 2
Encourage the child(ren) to join in; they usually have great imaginations and respond quickly to visualisation games. Let them come up with their own variations: garden hose/snowfall, whatever they like. They will probably be able to continue to chat their way through this, so don’t expect silence!
You could turn the breathing exercise into a counting game: ‘can you hold that breath while we count on our fingers?’ ‘Can you do it lying down?’ ‘With your feet up?’ ‘And your eyes closed?’
I recently spent quite a decent length of time ‘inflating’ a toddler through our finger tips, and slowly deflating again…..
If you want to spin it out, make it into a challenge by trying to make them laugh while they do the breathing. Or an adventure game, creating a shelter/tent to lurk in together, doing the breathing exercise to keep quiet and ‘not disturb the animals you are watching’.