City Living
City Living

This week

City living


Maria’s Midweek Mindfulness 


the Wednesday Whisper


Home Sweet Home

After a slow holiday on buses, boats and trains, we ventured back home and needed to get to an airport. We arrived in the city around midday but having been away from any city for around 10 days, getting off the bus and taking in the city felt like an assault. We ordered some coffee and sat in a park, and it took a good 30 minutes for me to acclimatise to the hustle and bustle. I have noticed this sensation before when I was on a retreat in Scotland and then went to a supermarket and the lighting and colours felt like an assault.

So I wasn’t surprised to read this:

“There is evidence that strongly leads us to suspect that being in the city does something to a specific circuit in the brain that impairs your ability to deal with social stress,” says Andreas Meyer-Lindenberg, director of University of Heidelberg’s Central Institute for Mental Health in Germany. Meyer-Lindenberg’s group previously found that people who were living in or grew up in cities showed stronger activation in the amygdala and cingulate cortex (brain areas involved in processing and regulating emotion), respectively, compared with those from rural areas.

Having been born and brought up on city living, I haven’t given it that much thought because urban is my normal. Now, I’m wondering what so much stimulation does and whether we can relate that to how aggressive people have become in cities when we add a cocktail of ‘screen stimulation’.


Maria’s Midweek Mindfulness

I’m thinking about silence, quiet and staring at the sea and trees and as I am back in the city now, I’m considering how to build this in to everyday life.


The Wednesday Whisper

How much does your commute or environment take away from your wholeness?


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