Like the majority of locations on the planet, urbanization has expanded in Wellington. There are far more buses and cars on the streets than ever, creating higher levels of noise and pollution. Life gets even harder here for citizens lacking personal space, or those suffering from fiscal hardship. If this accumulates as time passes, stress may become chronic, which can lead to numerous issues, such as alcoholism, entertainment addictions or even overeating.
Once, it was generally believed that Wellington was a city built to eradicate stress. Indeed, the town is surrounded by idyllic natural relaxation spots. As one example, the Botanic Garden is immersed in beautiful plant life and offers some good vistas of the city. Then there’s Otari-Wilton’s Bush: just 15 minutes outside of the city center, it is a great place to get away from it all and immerse is a relaxing bout of hiking or bird watching.
Even so, emerging research and academic opinions suggest that beautiful nature in urban centers is just one part of relieving stress. Even with many places to escape to, reducing stress must also take place at the individual level. To that end, there’s an increasing belief that turning inwards may be essential. Turning towards mindful practices may help bring the body and mind into equilibrium, especially among the chaos of big metropolitan areas like Wellington.
The origins of mindfulness, meditation and yoga in Wellington
It all started in the 1980s, when many Wellington locals returned from places like India and Thailand and started teaching mindfulness oriented arts like meditation and yoga. Eventually, instructors started to mix the best components of mindfulness with yoga asanas, in order to produce one of the most accessible type of stress relief for their students. It proved to be accessible, easy to learn and easy to form into a lasting habit.
This is likely the reason that yoga has become such a big thing in Wellington. Such types of classes help to bolster presence and awareness, which can help manage the constant issues and disruptions of metropolitan life. When in distress, students learn to simply breathe deeply, focus on their being in the moment, and then the stress melts away.