Evanna is open about the fact her life isn’t always magical. She struggles just like we all do. So what does she do to look after her mental wellbeing, especially when stuff is getting a bit much? Right now, it’s Circus School. Yup, you read that right, when she’s feeling stressed walking on tightropes and balancing at massive heights helps her feel less stressed. Something that perhaps feels apt for a former Harry Potter actor.
“The thing at the moment that helps my mental health and makes me happy is the circus community. It’s so separate from work. It’s still performance, but it’s not my profession. There’s no pressure on it. And it’s a very creative, eclectic community. It’s a lot of people who feel like they don’t fit in. And so I go to those classes, and I see all these people, and they’re all so strong, like physically and mentally overcoming stuff. And, yeah, that makes me really happy to be alive every day.
Evanna likens the focus she finds through activities like trapeze and headstands to that traditionally linked to meditation and mindfulness.
“I couldn’t get into doing meditation because my mind is too busy. I have to have something to focus on. And I find that when I’m doing something like hoop, it’s so difficult that you really have to be present. You have to think where each limb goes and where you turn, because if your mind is somewhere else, it’s dangerous. I think sitting down and meditating works for a lot of people, but for other people you need something different to focus on.”
Moving her body had benefits beyond helping Evanna destress. It’s also helped her rebuild her relationship with her body, something that had been difficult for years.
“For years I cut myself off from my relationship with my body. I didn’t like having a body really. I was so grossed out by it and really made it my enemy. Finding a thing like Circus that uses your body, it means you have to be mindful of it, you have to care for it. And if you do that, it can start to learn these amazing things. It made me really learn how to be friends with my body again.”
So what advice does Evanna have for anyone who’s finding the pressures of life, work, exams, how their body looks or.. well, anything else, tough?
“Life is inherently very challenging. And I think you’d actually be a bit weird if you weren’t struggling at times. It’s important to just keep openly talking, to increase your compassion for yourself and other people too. You need to understand that everyone has bad days. And that’s normal. And we’ll get through it, you’ll get through it.”
Catch the full How We Move series from ITV here.
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