From relaxing baths to seaside swims, water can be a balm in difficult times. Catherine Kelly, the author of a new book on blue spaces, shares her tips
It was after her mother died that Catherine Kelly learned the healing power of water. Following instincts that she did not yet understand, she moved to live alone by the sea in County Mayo, on the west coast of Ireland, and over the next few years began to heal. “It’s an ebb and flow that water gives us that allows us to connect with ourselves. It’s an allowing,” she says.
After eight years studying the therapeutic effects of nature, she has written a book called Blue Spaces, packed with ideas about how to make the most of being in or near water. You don’t have to live near the coast to benefit. “There’s being in it, being next to it, thinking about it,” she says. Nor does it matter how much water is available. From raindrops to the ocean, urban fountains to canals and fast-moving rivers, there is a blue space for everyone. And although the phrase “blue space” typically refers to natural waters, Kelly says the possibilities for meaningful connection are the same whether it is the sea or your shower.