I know many of us feel that the walls are closing in on us right now, so I am encouraging you to continue using the resources at your disposal to help maintain and even improve your health during this unprecedented and stressful time.
If you require any specific exercises or advice, please don’t hesitate to call or email.
Last week I wrote an article about a breathing technique as a tool for stress management. I would like to expand on that today to discuss meditation. There are more and more people who are now realizing the profound benefits of meditation. Although meditation has been around for thousands of years, only recently has it made a significant impact for many people. As a result, there is an abundance of tools and resources available and easily accessible.
What is meditation?
Meditation is a practice where an individual uses a technique – such as mindfulness or focusing the mind on a particular object, thought, or activity – to train attention and awareness, and achieve a mentally clear and emotionally calm and stable state.
The origins of meditation date back at least 5000 years in India and China, and it has been an integral part of the teachings and philosophies of these ancient cultures, even up to this day.
Basically, the goal of meditation is to bring the mind into a relaxed, yet clear state of calm and inner focus. Physical activity benefits the body, whereas meditation benefits the mind.
Why do we need to “benefit the mind?”
We live in a fast-paced society where we are constantly inundated with information, more than ever before. To exist in this state is very emotionally and physically unhealthy, especially during exceptionally stressful times such as these.
How does meditation help?
Many scientific studies show that meditation has many benefits, including reduction of stress and anxiety, improving mental clarity, and reduction of memory loss, just to name a few.
How do you do it?
Meditation is a skill, and for it to be effective, it takes consistent practice.
There are multiple types of meditation and ways to practice but doesn’t have to be complicated. Even prayer could be considered a form of mediation. If you are just starting out, I would suggest using guided meditation, where a person is speaking to you, guiding you through the whole process.
As mentioned above, there are many tools available. Here is a shortlist of some of my favourites.
Calm: Calming and short meditation video:
Headspace: Mindfulness for your everyday life: Stress less. Move more. Sleep soundly.
Calm: Find Your Calm - Sleep more. Stress less. Live better.
Insight Timer: The largest free library of guided meditations on earth.
10% Happier: Meditation for a happier, healthier you.
Oak: Meditation and Breathing App.
Sam Harris: Join Sam Harris—neuroscientist, philosopher, and best-selling author—as he explores some of the most important questions about the human mind, society, and current events.
Tara Brach: Tara Brach’s teachings blend Western psychology and Eastern spiritual practices, mindful attention to our inner life, and a full, compassionate engagement with our world.
And finally, I’ll like to reiterate that I’m here for you, regularly checking our phone and email messages. Please reach out to me if I can help: firstname.lastname@example.org 519-258-8544