Jane Fowler - Head of Customer Support Services
Happy Wednesday everyone! The sun is shining after our May Day Monday storm, so I hope you manage to get yourself out and about to enjoy it. We’re covering a couple of topics, the first is all about walking and #WalkThisMay. There are lots of ways to get involved and enjoy our fantastic outdoor environment and explore some of the vast network of paths that are on our doorsteps. We would love to see your pictures, so you use the hashtag #abplace2b and #WalkThisMay on social media – or email them to us - we can share some of our wonderful places and views with each other, like Seona’s photo below. I’ve joined a team with some of our HSCP colleagues to take part in the Step Count Challenge 2021 (still time to sign up a team online!), so I’m looking forward to try out some new routes!
The other is ‘From To Do to Ta Da!’ which I love! So instead of having endless To Do lists, start yourself a Ta Da list to remind yourself about just how much you have achieved – it really does feel good.
So I’m off to check out paths and get a new list together! Enjoy your walking.
National Walking Month
May is National Walking Month, an annual celebration of walking, so lace up your shoes and take up the challenge of walking 20 minutes as part of your daily exercise every day this month (and beyond)! You can find out more about this national campaign here Try20 and there are lots of ideas to increase your walking and to participate in family or group activities, while keeping safe. #WalkThisMay
After the last year, more of us than ever are appreciating the chance to get out of the house for a walk more than ever! Seona Laird, spoke to Jolyon Gritten, the council’s Access Manager about the work his team does which supports us to explore our local area.
Did you know that the council has designated 1,200 miles of Core Paths for public access across Argyll and Bute?
These paths cater for all types of users, walkers, cyclists, and horse riders, of all abilities. A Core Path can be a trod path through long grass, a Public Right of Way, farm or forestry track, an old drove road, a minor road, or the footway beside a major road, basically anywhere there is a route on the ground.
Remember to follow the guidance for both social distancing and the Scottish Outdoor Access Code
Explore Argyll & Bute!
All the good weather recently might encourage you to dig out you walking shoes, pump up your bike tyres or saddle up your horse and explore some of Argyll’s wonderful countryside. Whether you go for a mile or further you are sure to see something to raise your spirits.
So whether you want to get out for 20 minutes at lunch time or for a whole day the Where to go Outdoors map of paths is a good place to find somewhere new to explore, it is available on your phone where you have a data, so if you get a bit lost the “My location” button will tell you where you are and help you to get back on track.
If you click on a purple Core Path you can see information about the path, including links to external web pages with more information and leaflets, the distance and a short description.
- Forestry & Land Scotland have lots of information on their webpages about walks and cycle rides in the forests, just enter the town or a postcode.
- Walk Highlands has detailed descriptions of walks across Scotland, complete with photographs, over 100 are in Argyll.
- Some communities have their own walks pages one of my favourites is Wee Walk Oban,
- Looking for a challenge? There are 200 miles of long distance paths from the 30 mile long West Island Way on Bute, to the 100 miles Kintyre Way.
If you want to use your rights of access to explore away from these paths but are not sure where you are allowed to go or how you should behave you might find this web-page helpful Outdoor Access in Argyll & Bute
I am sure many of you have favourite views from our wonderful local landscapes.
This view (taken from Core Path C111(a)* lifted Seona Laird’s spirits on a recent lunchtime walk.
*Creag Ghlas, Cairnbaan to Kilduskland Reservoir above the canal bank looking down Loch Gilp onto Loch Fyne.
Send us your pictures of whatever has lifted your spirit on a recent walk, telling us where it was, and we will feature some here in coming weeks.
From To-Do List to Ta-Da List
Do you have a To Do List that keeps getting bigger and which feels like you will never get to the end of it?
While To Do Lists are an effective tool for helping us to prioritise and be organised, giving a real sense of satisfaction as we tick things off, but they can become demoralising when we fail to achieve things and the list just keeps getting longer.
Realistically, we probably all set ourselves impossible targets and therefore almost always end up feeling we have not achieved all that we set out to do.
So, rather than focussing on what you haven’t done, why not try taking a moment to acknowledge the things you have done and what made you feel good and create your own “Ta Da List”! You can then record the things you have done from your To Do List, but it is also good to include the smaller things, including anything positive that made you feel good that day, for example:
- I enjoyed that
- I made someone laugh today
- I went for a walk at lunchtime
- I got positive feedback today
- I was proud of what I did today
It is also good to recognise the challenging things you have tackled, for example:
- I was dreading that but it was not as bad I thought
- I thought it would take ages but it didn’t
- I had been putting that off but now I have done it
- I have never done that before, but now I know how to do it
- That didn’t go to plan, but I will know how to approach that better next time
If you get into the habit of reviewing the things you have achieved, even on a weekly or monthly basis, it can help to balance the frustration at not completing everything on your “To Do List” and help you have more realistic expectations of what you can and cannot achieve.
So why not give it a go and be kinder to yourself, “Ta Da – look what I have achieved today”!
Please let us know your thoughts and ideas about the items featured here and send us your suggestions for future topics – we love to hear from you!
The Wellbeing Team: firstname.lastname@example.org