It’s summer time and we are enjoying long days bright with sunshine, with light waking us up and lingering until late evening. Whilst I am living by the sea, I am making the most of this opportunity to experience the outdoors and the beach. I’m not, I hasten attempting to squeeze into a small space to lie amongst hundreds of sun worshippers on their holidays, but am spending these light early mornings and late summer evenings outdoors and feeling immense gratitude that life is allowing this, this year.
The opportunity to practice mindfulness on the beach is just too good to pass up and is so worth getting out of bed for. Rising early, walking as the sun begins to gently warm the day, and taking my breakfast with me. Settling in for an hour to enjoy the food and drink I’ve prepared, to people watch and to engage in mindful activities: meditation with the breeze and the warmth of the sun on my face; barefoot mindful walking, feeling the sand and pebbles under my feet. Paddling at the waters edge, becoming fully aware of the sea – the coldness and the sensations as it laps against my ankles; how the waves form and cast themselves onto the shore, the soothing sound of the waves as they rise and collapse on the sand. Even pebbles and shells can provide mindful contemplation with so many textures, sizes, patterns, colours scattered along the shoreline.
Practising multisensory mindfulness in nature on a beach is a delight – do try it if you are having a week or two by the coast this summer. Become aware of all sensory stimuli – sounds, sights, scents, textures. And with open curiosity, be mindful of how these stimuli differ, or feel similar to natural stimuli in your home environment.