Saturday, 4 October 2014

Blue Mind

I have often wondered if perhaps I used to be a fish. Or a dolphin.  Or another equally aquatic being.

Ever since I can remember I have loved water.  Being in, on, near, or under it.  On holidays as children my brother and I would spend hour upon hour in the water, one of my favourite things about living in Maidenhead is the river and whenever we visit Alex's parents I never tire of walking up and down the bank looking out to sea.  Whenever I'm feeling uptight, cutting through cool water and having a good swim totally resets my mood.

I should probably point out at this point, that in a cruel twist of something or other, I am also massively sea sick - but we'll just over look that for the minute, or it spoils my point.

This summer, I didn't go abroad, but it
was one of the nicest, most relaxing and fulfilling summers I can remember - probably helped rather a lot by the fact I had 6 weeks off. And the amazing weather we  had. But aside from that I think it has a lot to do with the amount of time I spent in, near or on the water.

I sat by, walked along and swam in the
sea in three entirely different parts of the UK. I even sat and watched a seal swimming along on one occasion.  I kayaked up the river and lounged by and in a lake.  I floated about in a swimming pool and bobbed around a harbour in a little boat.

There is something about water that just changes my mood entirely and almost instantly.  I can't really describe it other than to say it's a real "aaaaaahh" moment.  It is so relaxing and restorative.  It's so real and honest and natural.  It's impossible to feel stressed or to get bored just staring at water.  I suppose, what I'm really trying to say is that water just makes me feel so happy, in a lovely quiet content, grounded sort of way.

Water has this amazing power to still the mind and point out how wonderful life is.

For me, anyway.

And it seems I'm not alone.  After I was reflecting on this out loud, Alex found an article in The Guardian about a book called Blue Mind: How Water Makes you Happier, More Connected and Better at What You Do by Wallace J Nichols.  One for the list I think.

I have to say though, I think my brother would probably beg to differ with the premise of the book.  Having spent the last 3 weeks sailing the most ridiculous stormy seas I'm sure he would argue that water, rather than make you better at stuff, makes it entirely impossible to do anything at all without falling over or bumping into something, thus making you anything but happier.  Stepping onto dry land again (and waiting for the ensuing weird rolling sensation to die down) might in fact make him a teeny bit happier.

So, perhaps its like everything in life, everything in moderation.

For  me though, I've yet to have my fill.

And I'm still convinced I used to be dolphin.  Blue mind or not.

1 comment:

  1. Hey Emma, nice blog, and glad to find a fellow water liker. I especially like the feeling of swimming underwater. BTW if you like the idea of happiness in general, check out these guys:


please do join in the makes me happy!