origami workshops for wellbeing
As with other mindfulness practices, doing origami encourages living in the moment, thereby helping to lessen the effects of stress or anxiety.
Origami workshops for wellbeing
According to wellbeinginfo.org ‘Research carried out by the Mental Health Foundation has found that in the last year 74% of UK adults have felt so stressed at some point that they have felt overwhelmed or unable to cope. And the Stress Management Society has found that 65% of people in the UK have felt more stressed since the COVID-19 restrictions began in March 2020’.
Origami is the Japanese art of paper folding and apart from the enjoyment of exploring the creative possibilities of working with paper, origami has been shown to promote relaxation and creative thinking. It helps the brain to quieten and facilitates a calmer emotional state. As with other mindfulness practices, doing origami encourages living in the moment, thereby helping to lessen the effects of stress or anxiety. I believe that origami is a fantastic ‘gateway’ to meditation as it puts you back into your body whilst still engaging your hands and brain. It is an accessible means of introducing a meditative practice rather than expecting busy, anxious people to go straight to sitting on a cushion!
A few examples of past and forthcoming origami workshops for:
The Royal Albert Hall as part of their hosting of a new organisation dedicated to promoting wellbeing in the arts (the National Arts Wellbeing Collective UK) which brought together more than 60 arts institutions from around the UK. The focus of the initiative was ‘to draw together colleagues from many arts organisations, all committed to opening up the conversation around mental health and improving wellbeing support across what can be a highly pressurised industry’
Schools (both in After School Clubs and training teachers to enable them to use origami as part of their Wellbeing provision)
Three weekends running origami workshops for adults and children at the Camp Wildfire summer festival in Sevenoaks, Kent.
And, coming up in April 2024, sailing with Royal Caribbean cruises from Beijing via Japan to Singapore offering origami workshops to the 5,000 passengers on board.
I discovered origami about 4 years ago when I was going through a very stressful period in my life. I happened to stumble across a photograph of origami cranes in a magazine, thought that they were very beautiful and decided to teach myself how to make them.
I really did experience the positive effects mentioned above which made an immediate difference to my anxiety levels and I also now have a skill that I can always call on whenever I start to feel my anxiety levels starting to rise.