On Monday evening I attended a show by Katie Piper at the Duchess Theatre, London. ‘What’s In My Head’ is the name of her debut UK tour, which began this spring. You may have heard of Katie Piper for a number of reasons: She’s a British TV presenter, author, philanthropist (she runs a charity called The Katie Piper Foundation), and she’s a survivor of a horrific acid attack, which has altered the course of her life.
Katie is an inspiration to many (including myself) because of how she’s dealt, and continues to deal with the extreme challenges she’s faced. She’s not just survived, she’s thrived; turning the horrendous experiences she’s had into opportunities to support and educate others, and build a career for herself.
Katie’s show is more of an inspirational talk than anything else, where she opens up about what happened to her when she was attacked, the impact on both her physical and mental health following the attack; as well as some of the things that helped her to cope at this really dark time in her life.
Katie talks about affirmations and how these don’t just have to be quotes shared on social media, these can be anything from images or words to tattoos with personal information about a loved one, for instance the date of birth of a child. An affirmation is simple something encouraging and/or meaningful. I won’t go into too much detail so no spoilers here, however I will just say that she encourages you to write down any affirmations you have that are in word form and stick these up around your home. The idea being that in seeing these regularly you are reinforcing positive messages for yourself. I was encouraged to write one by the Life Coach who hosted the vision board workshop I attended a little while ago. She suggested the whole group write one each and carry this on their person moving forward, as she does. Mine is ‘Trust yourself, you’ve got this’ which is just a reminder to me that I can rely on myself and that I won’t let myself down.
The 2:1 yoga breathing technique is demonstrated by Katie as she said she finds this useful to calm her nerves at times. This kind of breathing is the opposite to ‘Fight or Flight’ and is apparently referred to as ‘Rest and Digest’. She explains that the technique is simply used to relax us and take us out of our anxious mode. You need to sit up straight, inhale for say three seconds, then exhale for say six seconds, or inhale for four seconds and exhale for eights, hence 2:1.
Although the subject matter of the talk was very serious, Katie delivered it in a way that made it moving and in some places, lighthearted and humorous. She’s a naturally engaging speaker and if there’s one thing I took away from the talk it’s that you will only move forward if you truly learn to accept your circumstances. Wishing things were different or making comparisons with other people isn’t useful. I would highly recommend the show and there are still some tickets available for her final tour date on Thursday 31st May in Camberley, Surrey so now is the time to get one!