This week is Mental Health Awareness Week and this year’s theme is kindness. Given the current circumstances, kindness is important now more than ever. As we all learn to navigate through these uncertain times, it is particularly important to be mindful of our own mental health with many of us worrying how this will affect us and the ones we love.
At St Eval Candle Company we have loved seeing the thoughtful gestures of gifts being sent to friends and family with heartfelt messages, letting loved ones know you are here for them and thinking of them. It’s also been wonderful seeing the countless nominations for our Random Acts of Kindness campaign we’ve been running on our Facebook and the communities coming together to look out for one another. Taking a moment to reach out to someone that might be feeling lonely, scared or worried to let them know you are thinking of them can lift their mood as well as your own.
Being kind to others is important but also remembering to be kind to yourself is essential. Burning your favourite candle can help to bring a peaceful ambience to the home, helping you to switch off and take a moment to relax and unwind. Some of our Office team have taken to lighting one at the end of their day to help them transition from working at home to relaxing at home – particular favourites are Sea Salt and Tranquillity.
Smell is a strong sense, powerfully acting on the limbic part of our brain. When we surround ourselves with beautiful scents, especially those from nature, we can evoke wonderful feelings helping to improve our wellbeing and transform our mood. Try soothing Lavender to help you relax in the evenings, uplifting Bergamot & Nettle to brighten your morning or the soothing herbal aroma of Bay & Rosemary to keep you focused during the days. Even just watching the hypnotic lure of candlelight creates a state of trance and stillness, helping us to calm down and achieve a meditative state.
Being kind and understanding to ourselves, as well as others, is hugely important for our mental health and wellbeing. Acts of kindness create an emotional warmth, which releases a hormone known as oxytocin. Even just witnessing acts of kindness produces this hormone aids in lowering blood pressure and improving our overall heart-health.
In April of 2020, the Mental Health Foundation worked with YouGov to conduct an online survey of 4,246 UK adults aged 18+. They found that a staggering 63% of UK adults agree that when other people are kind it has a positive impact on their mental health, and the same proportion agree that being kind to others has a positive impact on their mental health.
We asked the St. Eval office team to share how they have been celebrating kindness this week, here is what they’ve been up to:
“I have started going on a weekly walk with my Uncle, he lives alone and isn’t working at the moment so doesn’t get to see many people due to the lockdown. Even though restrictions have been lifted slightly meaning we could see each other from a safe distance he lives too far away for me to visit just for the day, so it isn’t really feasible right now. We schedule in a time and date, and the call starts as we set off from our homes. It means we both get a bit of exercise in which I love after a day at my desk and we get to catch up on what we’ve been doing over the last week.”
“As a thank you to the team for their hard work during these strange times, I wanted to cheer them up with a little treat – and who doesn’t love chocolate? I sent each member of my team a bar of Chocolarder Wild Gorse chocolate to bring a smile to their faces. It’s great to support a wonderful local business as well, and Chocolarder chocolate is made from bean to bar here in Cornwall.”
“I donated food, toiletries and household cleaning products to my local food bank in Wadebridge. Foodbank’s rely on support from communities and in times like these, they are experiencing unprecedented demand. Food donations are vital in getting balanced and nutritious food to those in need and is one small way of supporting your community.”
With the theme of kindness, we wanted to share this lovely poem written by Marketing Manager Sarah, to all the unsung heroes of our communities:
“To all the unsung heroes of our community, I thank you...
For those calling an elderly relative or someone on their own, to remind them they’re not forgotten, delivering shopping or kind word on the phone.
For looking out for your families, making sure they eat well, take breaks have daily exercise and don’t start to smell.
For teaching and guiding the kids as they study each day, while juggling busy homeworking and keeping tempers at bay.
For the small things that matter, not made to impress, just a thought in a card or a gift to bring happiness.
For caring enough to ask why or challenge status quo, for lifting a heart, when it’s feeling low.
I thank you all, keep smiling through because you’re the hidden strength,
society glue.” xx
We’d love to hear how you are spreading kindness for MentalHealthAwarenessWeek. Let us know via email firstname.lastname@example.org or on social, @stevalcandles.