These are great for dealing with anxiety as they fix us firmly in a location. So its no surprise then that they can also help us be mindful of the location we might want to write about. At Overhear we've found that being in a place or space with the intention to write about it and feeling calm in a space in general have a large amount of cross over. The more we engage in both the better it is for our writing and for our mental health.
If you want to literally ground yourself you could engage in the art of "Free Seeing" coined by Francis Lowe: facebook.com/freeseeing . These are events where attendees bring role mats, lie on the floor and look at things from the ground up!
This first opportunity is open for all! We are asking for users to add their own poems to our public map during lockdown to capture a time capsule of recordings to be collected after the lock down is lifted.
These can be about, and pinned to places you'd like to visit when you next get the chance or places people can safely go to during their daily exercise. Perhaps pin something to a friend or relatives back garden or local open space for them to collect.
To up load your poem make your recording as an MP3 and follow the instructions here: www.theoverhear.app/upoad
I'm interested in seeing how Overhear can help improve wellness, there are several lists out there that give key indicators to mental well being. For example: PWB (Psychological Well Being) scales measure six dimensions of wellness :
2) environmental mastery,
3) personal growth,
4) positive relations with others,
5) purpose in life, and
The charity MIND have:
1) Confidence & self esteem
2) Feel and express a range of emotions,
3) Feel engaged with the world around you
4) Work productively
5) Cope with the stresses of daily life
6) Adapt and manage in times of change and uncertainty. The majority of which i think can me more or less addressed by combining walking and poetry. Overhear finds itself in the position of being able to address issues around poor mental health. Users can currently engage in a healthy way with Overhear through self organising to get out and collect recordings from spaces in their area, the poem can give someone an excuse to get out and into spaces where they might not otherwise have a reason. By encouraging poetic engagement, reflection and a reason to stop and observe surroundings connects individuals with their environment developing or inspiring their creative practice and their ability to ground themselves in a space and environment.
One interesting tool I've come across recently but haven't been able to explore is the Happiness Pulse https://www.happinesspulse.org/ which Coventry & Warwickshire Well Being For Life will be using in upcoming projects that I'll be keeping an eye on.