As the country begins to emerge from another lockdown, PRS Members’ Fund’s own Athena Pite writes about how we can re-enter society mindfully, taking into account all we’ve learnt over the past 12 months.
Athena is a welfare and development officer for the PRS Members’ Fund, a registered social worker and mental health first aider.
PRS Members' Fund provide support and advice to PRS for Music members and their families who are struggling financially, physically or emotionally and are in need of help. For more information, head to their website.
‘As I write this we're slowly beginning to emerge from lockdown, like a chrysalis ready to unfold from a long winter hibernation. Most of us are looking forward to stretching our wings and soaring into arenas of previous or new activities. And yet, some of us may feel hesitant, concerned, anxious. Maybe we don't quite yet feel physically safe enough to go out and expose ourselves. Some of us may feel we've lost confidence in being able to socially interact. And for singer-songwriters, there may be the added dimension of anticipation or fear of once again performing in front of a live audience. The weight of one’s own and others’ expectations.
‘Whatever our experience, we might want to take some time to really check in with ourselves. What are we feeling? Where are we at? Just stopping to take a few deep, mindful and compassionate breaths, right down into the belly, with a slow release, can calm and allow us to explore and resonate more closely with what might be going on inside.
'The lockdown, with all its trials and tribulations, suffering, trauma and death has also given varying opportunities to reflect on what's most important to each of us.'
‘Maybe we decide not to venture too far in our first steps. There may be some who rush out like a bunch of wild horses let loose from a closed corral suddenly left open. Thundering, pounding, creating clouds of dust in passing. Some of us might feel more hesitant. Take a moment to consider what your usual way of operating is – do you generally have a tendency to dash ahead, filled and fuelled by excitement and enthusiasm for adventure, perhaps overlooking a more cautious part of yourself? Or maybe you're more of a quiet observer, gently feeling your way, attuned to the subtleties of experiences? To state the obvious, we’re all different with a dominant way of being and doing. The experiences of lockdown though might have revealed other tendencies less evident than before. Like the notes you create as a composer, each one is different and unique, some emphasised more than others, with a constantly changing rhythm that makes up the whole. Maybe you want to explore and map your own personal ‘song’.
‘The lockdown, with all its trials and tribulations, suffering, trauma and death has also given varying opportunities to reflect on what's most important to each of us. Collectively, we are now more in touch with the importance of our mental health and wellbeing than ever before. And taking care of this means firstly knowing our own ways of being and what works best at any given time.
‘So, as we move towards the height of summer at the Solstice and a hoped for release from the restrictions of lockdown, let's pause and take a moment to reflect on what we appreciate most as we step out into the future.’