Wellness day - “Care for Yourself, so you can Care for Others” 25 November 2014

On November 25th CABSA and Leo Mosselman combined their strengths in order to give something back to our caregivers. Leo Mosselman provides Body Work and Tai Chi trainings in the Netherlands and offered his skills to CABSA for this fascinating day.

Before we even introduced ourselves, we started with exercises that made us aware of our own bodies. Especially how we build-up tension within our muscles without us even knowing. This was followed by an interactive way of introducing ourselves to each other and memorizing their names.

One of the highlights for the participants was an exercise in which they became aware that they can care for others, but that it also is important to keep some energy for themselves. Leo challenged us to put this knowledge into practise by having a conversation with one another while keeping a tennis ball rolling under your feet. The reflections on this exercise made it clear that it was quite difficult to listen to your body and understanding the signals that it gives while you listen to the stories of other people. It takes practise.

We also did a power exercise, in which we first needed to push our partner over. For the majority of the group it was very easy to push their partner over. However, if we take some time and prepare for a specific situation (getting rooted) we found ourselves to be stronger and able to handle the specific situation. When we tried to push our partners over this time it was more difficult. Understanding your own power, returned in the towel exercise in which we fought over a towel. The towel reflected something precious that we didn’t want to hand over.  The participants fought hard for their towels and became aware of their physical strength and how they can implement this within their work. 

Throughout the day we felt that our bodies were starting to relax, when we walked down the stairs to get some tea a common reaction was: ‘my legs feel like pap’.

After lunch Leo gave an introduction to Tai Chi. He explained 24-movements that help to activate and balance the energy in your body. When he showed the 24-movements it seemed like he was dancing. Leo taught us three of the movements that we practised in the afternoon.

In the reflections on the day the participants shared that it was a healing day for them in which they were able to focus completely on themselves.  Especially the volunteers felt acknowledged and empowered, they learned that in caring for others it is important to care for yourself, to reserve some energy for your individual well-being.  

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