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As part of my job description falls under the title of writer I write daily or at least that is the plan. Having secured regular commissions, my own column in a well-established country magazine and my work appearing regularly in national newspapers and magazines, I have to have a steady stream of ideas and creative flow.  Now, whilst most days the thoughts flow from my mind to my notepad or laptop there are times when my thoughts and creative writing become stagnant and locked in. Whilst I have never deemed myself to have suffered from writers block, I have often said that I suffer from writers frustration.  The problem I have is too many thoughts running around my head and lots of ideas that all compete with one another for a turn on the page; the result being lots of half-finished pieces. There are always a million and one things that can distract me when wanting to settle down and write, I have two children for a start, but even if my little ones were grown up I am sure I could find another suitable distraction from my writing.

IMG_2097 (Small)As I am in the process of completing another book and writing lots of commissioned articles I decided it was time to increase my writing productivity now I could have adopted the writing habits of some of our literary greats such as Roald Dahl who wiggled into a sleeping bag before he could get his writing done, or Truman Capote who wrote In ‘Cold Blood’ and ‘Breakfast at Tiffany’s’ who needed to lie down with a coffee, and then a sherry, and then a martini, as he wrote. However, as tempting as a sleeping bag and a martini are, I thought perhaps meditation could become my invaluable writing asset.

Filled with curiosity and hope I toddled along to a new meditation group run by Iain Cameron- Watson at Denmark Farm Conservation Centre.  To begin with we did some gentle therapeutic body movements, which Iain explained were designed to promote healing, strength, flexibility and balance. It was very relaxing and highlighted all the tension that I was holding onto in my shoulders and neck.

IMG_2101 (Small)After some breathing exercises and body movements we progressed to some guided meditation. I had my two year old and five year old with me and so I was a little nervous about how far I would get with my meditation practice, but my girls both fully participated, with Hattie really enjoying the process.

After the meditation session my nerves were soothed and calmed and my brain felt ready to process the information it has soaked up from reading and listening. Meditation allows your mind to have an authentic conversation with itself, and to make honest discoveries about creativity. After my meditation session I felt that I was in a different space, a more reflective, creative, and productive space, free of noise and clutter, and a haven of clarity.

I shall definitely be attending the Mindful Meditation Class again and will be trying to incorporate it into my daily writing routine. So to all fellow writers when the words get stuck, the ideas get jammed, the chatter gets loud; the mind gets cluttered, and you get discouraged try some meditation.

If you fancy popping along to do some Mindful Meditation with Iain then his classes are every Tuesday at Denmark Farm Conservation Centre from 7pm-8pm and he also runs lots of workshops and courses.

Well enough procrastinating for me, I should get back to finishing that book of mine!

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About Seren Charrington-Hollins

ABOUT SEREN-CHARRINGTON-HOLLINS Describing my work through just one job title is difficult; because my professional life sees me wear a few hats: Food Historian, period cook, broadcaster, writer and consultant. I have a great passion for social and food history and in addition to researching food history and trends I have also acted as a consultant on domestic life and changes throughout history for a number of International Companies. In addition to being regularly aired on radio stations; I have made a number of television appearances on everything from Sky News through to ITV’s Country House Sunday, Holiday of a Lifetime with Len Goodman , BBC4’s Castle’s Under Siege, BBC South Ration Book Britain; Pubs that Built Britain with Hairy Bikers and BBC 2’s Inside the Factory. Amongst other publications my work has been featured in Period Living Magazine, Telegraph, Daily Telegraph, Daily Mail and Great British Food Magazine and I write regularly for a variety of print and online publications. I am very fortunate to be able to undertake work that is also my passion and never tire of researching; recreating historical recipes and researching changing domestic patterns. Feel free to visit my blog, www.serenitykitchen.com