Calm, quiet, simplicity with mindfulness and meditation.
We strive to find peace in the world and in ourselves. To break with the overwork and the 24-hour news cycle and the never ending chatter within. Mindfulness and meditation can help us begin to cultivate a calmer inner environment and a happier outlook.
Simple in theory
The basic idea behind multiple different varieties of meditation is to focus the mind on the present and practice non-judgement. ¹ Some accomplish this through focusing on something specific like the breath, or a part of the body, or a word or idea. Some seek to clear thought. Some use guided meditation- or listening to another person talk them through a sequence.
For example- a quick breathing exercise for anytime and anywhere.
- Sit or stand comfortably.
- Breathe in deeply for four counts through the nose.
- Hold the breath for eight counts.
- Let the breath out slowly for eight counts through the mouth.
- If any errant or intrusive thoughts come up, simply acknowledge it and let them drift away.
- Feel better.
Or an example of a short guided meditation
But not easy
Even with a simple short breathing exercise, the mind may wander and have to be brought back to focus. That is perfectly normal and ok. That is not an indication of “doing it wrong.” As with any new endeavor, it takes time and practice to cultivate the skill. Even seasoned veterans of these techniques don’t do it perfectly all the time. Just doing it, however imperfectly, still reaps benefits, which compound over time.
Mindfulness and meditation have a plethora of documented benefits, many of which complement the therapeutic benefits of massage. Study after study indicates the benefit of mindfulness and meditation for a wide variety of conditions. It can help relieve symptoms of and improve quality of life for people who experience:
- Stress, anxiety, & depression ² ³ ⁴ ⁵ ⁶
- PTSD ⁷ ⁸ ⁹
- Fibromyalgia ¹⁰ ¹¹ ¹²
- Chronic Pain ¹³ ¹⁴ ¹⁵
- And many individual conditions.
The medical community has begun integrating these techniques into treatments and self-care regimens. In fact, the corporate world has also begun to add meditation to their wellness programs. ¹⁶
Generally, meditation simply makes people feel better. It can lead to better handling of the stressors that life hands out, whether they be from workplace stress, dealing with an illness, or interpersonal relationships. Once the basics are learned, they can be used anytime to enhance one’s life and happiness.