Last week I posted on the school Facebook page a Sky podcast with Ian Ward talking to ex England cricket captain Andrew Strauss. Strauss was a very successful captain and took England to number one in the World rankings; he is also a real gentleman and has known sadness in recent years as his wife died of cancer.

In the podcast he says how he wishes meditation and mindfulness had come along earlier in his career as he found this really improved his game. When he was captain he dealt with players who went onto develop anxiety and patterns of mental illness, Marcus Trescothick and Jonathan Trott come to mind.

In this lockdown situation I would like to encourage everyone to embrace a meditation or mindfulness practice and make it part of their daily life. I really can’t start the day without my half an hour meditation, without it my attention just feels slightly off and my heart closes a little. My family certainly notice the change if the practice is not observed. Meditation seems to build up an energy in me that allows life to flow and small irritations assume their proper place in the greater scheme of things. I have been meditating for 28 years. I use a mantra which I sound and my attention follows this; one definition of mantra is ‘freedom through mind’.

There are a plethora of mindfulness apps and meditation courses on line. I do like Adyshanti, his guided meditation are lovely and I would recommend these. I think sometimes people don’t persist with meditation because they are not happy to just sit with ‘what is’. They are expecting some sort of particular state. All I can say is just give it a go, treat yourself to a little peace.

I also wanted to say how brilliant your sons have been, given the constraints we are under. I love my online Year 7 and 9 lessons and the boys are getting really involved, on and off their mics, and offering excellent ideas. Last week I was keen to try a short play with 7MS and perform it on Teams live, quite an undertaking with boys having different parts and needing to be on and off mics. I seem more busy than ever at present, but I managed to finish the play and write up the script on Monday evening. It felt like one of those tasks that was a good idea at the time! I sent it to the boys and knew there were a few typos. Next morning I found that Susheel in 7MS, had unbidden, proof read it for me and returned a final corrected copy! Many thanks Susheel - Service Before Self.

Many thanks for all your support and kind messages.