Stress busting - more ideas

Here in the UK it seems that everyone is getting in on the stress busting act. Only this week there has been wide press coverage about how David Beckham  builds models with Lego as a way of combating stress. Apparently, the TV presenter Richard Hammond has also revealed that he used  Lego as an essential part of his recovery after a near fatal high speed car accident.

Apart from articles like this raising awareness about mental health issues, it's good to see  constructive activities like building things with your hands getting the thumbs up. It's also particularly good to see children engaging in activities that doesn't include sitting in front of a computer screen for hours. To say nothing about the adverse effects of games like Grand Theft Auto and the  racially stereo-typing of young black males. However, that's another debate.

Such touching revelations from high profile celebrities co-incides with National Library Day which, in the UK, is on Saturday  8th February. Whilst giving the Day a plug I thought it seemed like a great opportunity to give reading for pleasure another airing. I've previously written about the beneficial effects of reading on mental health. It has been shown to lift mood and  relieve stress. Just at a personal level  my own experience is that, after a stressful day at work, reading can really help shift your mindset and provide relief and comfort. For me there's also something rather satisfying about supporting people who dedicate their lives to creative writing and have something very real to say about the nature of the human condition.

Here in the north east Newcastle city library is a fantastic resource. It's also a good place to meet with others and maybe learn a new skill. Here are a few of the current range of activities -
  • The Read Aloud group  meets on a Tuesday (2pm - 4pm or 6pm - 8pm)
  • Free workshop to help those new to computers - 10th February 10am -12 noon
  • Digital photography for beginners - contact the library direct for details
That's just one library. There are bound to be a host of other activities going on around the country. So check out a library near you and find out what's going on. Also, you might want to consider joining a local book group. Here in the UK there are a number of local groups springing up all over the place. So, reading need never  be a solitary activity anymore.

Whether your passion is for the digital page or a good old fashioned book that you can touch and feel here's to a great stress busting year.

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