Honesty time. I don’t do New Year’s resolutions. They set us up for failure. Every year, it seems people are focused on changing their body physically. I try to focus on fitness throughout the year, but I’ve never really sat down to think about what I need to be doing for myself mentally. As women, we tend to focus on ourselves last which can be downright detrimental to our health. I’m not immune to this taking care of everyone else before I take care of me. It causes me terrible stress and anxiety. When I feel this way I start to lash out at others.
Recently, I came across Eat Pray Love on Bravo. If you aren’t aware, it stars Julia Roberts as a woman going through severe emotional trauma after getting divorced. She decides to take a year long sabbatical to travel the world and find herself. She spends 3 months in India working on her spirituality by meditating. I was curious about meditating as I tend not to be able to control my thoughts—read anxiety. I decided I would look for a meditation app and give it a try.
Here are my top 5 reasons why I have began meditating and so should you.
It gives me 20 minutes to myself. As women, we tend to put ourselves last. I’m not a mother to children, but I do have an aging parent and in-laws, a husband, friends and dogs. A variety of people who need something from me. You get the point. Some days I get through the day, and I feel like I haven’t done one thing for myself. Meditation forces you take 20 minutes of alone, quiet time to think about your mind and body.
It forces you to look at how your thoughts, positive or negative, have a cause and effect. Look at thoughts as a seed. If you plant a seed, a flower will grow. If you plant a positive thought (the cause), you will have a positive outcome (the effect). The same goes for negative thoughts. Once you plant that negative thought, only negative effects can come out of it. It all starts and ends with your one thought. Meditation teaches you that you have the power to choose.
It’s a great way to begin and end each day with positivity. How many of us wake up in the morning dreading what we have to do that day? I know I do. If you begin your morning with meditation, you’re forced to start out with positive thoughts, positive seeds. It gives you the mental capacity to get through the workout or meeting you’re dreading. At the end of most days, I’m exhausted. Mentally and physically. Meditating before bed helps to control your central nervous system which helps you relax. Relaxing means you’re able to fall asleep and stay asleep.
It helps me control my emotions throughout the day. I have a tendency to spiral out of control in my own head. When I get emotional or stressed, I tend to lash out at those closest to me. I don’t like it at all, and am working to control it. When I start to feel annoyed and before I lash out, I focus on why. Thinking before reacting. I’m a very reactionary person. Forcing myself to think first helps me to not be ruled by emotion.
It eases my anxiety both physically and mentally. If you’ve never dealt with anxiety before, you’re lucky. It’s very hard to understand if you’ve never experienced it. I get anxiety about EVERYTHING. It’s crazy. I worry about things like a plane crashing into our house and then a fire starting and then the dogs dying and then Austin being upset. See how quickly that spiraled out of control? That’s an every day thing for me. Meditation focuses on breathing along with controlling your thoughts. Anxiety takes a physical toll on the body, as well as mentally. It helps calm me and get my heart rate under control. I’m not sure I ever get rid of having anxiety, but with meditation I can help to control how far I let it go.
Meditating certainly won’t change what is going on in your life, but it will help you deal with the things in life causing you stress. Take 20 minutes out of your day to check it out.
Your Resident Mental Basketcase ; )
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