I have been a worrier all my life. One of my first memories is of being anxious. I have no idea what was the source of the anxiety that frightened me as a wee girl, but the stomach churning, self-doubting fear has plagued me since.
But perhaps I am finding a way to stop worrying and start living cheerfully. Mindfulness sounds like one of those Sunday supplement fads, practised by yummy mummies with too much money and too much time on their hands.
It’s not – it is a practical way of harnessing our brains, putting an end to the terrible thoughts that can cause anxiety and worse, deep depression.
Our minds are just like muscles, we can work at them to make them strong and fit. I may never have a body like Jessica Ennis, but with some mindfulness training I might just end up with a healthy brain.
Interested? Ruby Wax’s new book Sane New World: Taming the Mind is the best place to start. She explains the neuroscience behind mindfulness, then sets out how to start practising it. She writes with joy, humour, wisdom and above all else, humanity.
I can’t recommend it highly enough – even if you consider yourself completely sane. Which in itself is a sign of madness.