For too long self-care and meditation have been plagued by ~cringe~ connotations. From Bondi hipsters lecturing you on their Vipassanā retreats (and how it enabled them to subsist on a diet of air and water, unlike you food eating peasants) to Instagram shamans selling enlightenment (and detox tea), it’s no wonder the wellness industry has given many of us the ick.
Then when you look to Hollywood, often the pendulum swings too far in the other direction. Though the activities may be, in the most cliche terms possible, cooler, sex, drugs and rock and roll are not conducive, in the long term to the healthiest of lifestyles.
Which brings us to Australian poster boy, gentle giant and Norse God Chris Hemsworth. Hemsworth has long been a global source of fitness inspiration for workout newbies all the way through to full-blown gym junkies. Forever on a quest to improve his body and overall health, Chris leads a life which many would benefit to live by. But for all his impressive feats when it comes to lifting weights and pushing serious loads, Chris is also someone to look up to if you want to improve your mental health.
Unlikely source? Maybe. Even we admit a Hollywood megastar isn’t the first person we’d turn to if we want to work on our mental health, but a series of posts Chris uploaded to his Instagram account in October 2020 (which we recently stumbled across during a fitness inspiration binge) beg to differ.
Offering some timely advice with regards to how to navigate the raging pandemic, Chris reminds us that affirmations – which, broadly speaking, are statements or ways of thinking we write down and repeat to ourself frequently – and positive thinking are key to achieving a healthier mind and soul, not just when there’s a pandemic forcing us to temporarily change the way we live, but for our everyday lives.
He also escapes the classic ‘spiritual’ trope of taking yourself too seriously (thus, hopefully, broadening the audience who might benefit from his words of wisdom) by integrating humour into his approach.
Part of his Centr program, which along with workout and nutrition advice, also has over 200 meditations and sleep visualisations included, Chris’ posts are especially approachable is their use of smile-sparking (“inhale possibilities, not bugs”) to help soften the subject of mental health, something which many people can be freaked out by and unwilling to deal with. Is there anything the man can’t do?
Posting 5 videos in all, the main message Chris puts across is to take some time to yourself, away from your phone, away from others and away from distractions. Meditating, essentially, but more so a way to challenge yourself, to take yourself away from your daily routine and simply take a break to reflect on what you’ve achieved in the previous 12 months in the face of unprecedented times.