Hi friends! So as you may know from a previous post, one of my resolutions for this year was to write a weekly blog post. So, here it is!
I got the inspiration fro this post from reading an article in Yoga Journal. It really struck home with me because I had (and still have) a hard time taking the time and even just practicing meditation. In this always-on-the-go society that we all live in and grew up in, it is really easy to get sucked into the idea that more is better and rest is for lazy people. Well, through the growth of my yoga practice and listening to my teacher/reading articles, I have come to find that restful practices like meditation can actually make your life more productive.
I know it sounds contradictory, but hear me out for a moment and try to picture this scenario in your mind as you read. The alarm goes off at 5am. You roll out of bed, half asleep, to take a shower, wake the kids up, get ready, and some how eventually make it to work on time. By the time you get to work, you need your daily cup of coffee and maybe breakfast (if you haven't eaten yet...more on why you should in a future post!!). You continue with your day, have lunch, maybe more coffee, and eventually make it back home with just enough time to get dinner started. By the end of the evening, you are exhausted and ready to crash in front of the TV.
Now, let's try to incorporate some meditation into the day and see if we can combat some unhealthy habits (i.e. lots of coffee, sugary snacks, and flopping on the couch in the evening).
First of all, try going to bed just 30 minutes earlier than normal. That way, you get a little extra sleep when that alarm goes off. When your alarm rings in the morning, hit snooze, but instead of going to sleep, find a comfortable place to sit up. Close your eyes and just draw out your day in your head, trying not to attach an emotion with the events, just simply listing. When the snooze alarm goes off, turn it off and continue with the rest of your morning; noticing if you feel a little better.
Now, when you are at work and millions of ideas/projects/emails are being thrown at you, scoot your chair away from your desk (or even walk away if you can) for just 1 to 5 minutes. Take slow deep breaths, concentrating only on your breathing, like nothing else matters. When you open your eyes and go back to work, notice if you feel any better, maybe even more happy/ more productive.
Finally, when you get home in the evening embrace all of your family members and take a few moments to breathe in the happiness of being home. Sometimes we can get more frustrated on the drive home because we are hungry, stuck in traffic, and just want to be home. Move as usual throughout the rest of your evening, then right before you go to sleep, gently recap your day without attaching emotions and then list 3-5 good things that happened that day (either aloud with your partner/kids or to yourself) so that you are in a good mood before dozing off.
Believe it or not, incorporating these simple techniques into your daily life IS meditation (or at least a form of it). You don't have to sit down for an hour and do absolutely nothing to reap the benefits. Simply focusing on deep breathing and calming your mind will help tremendously.
Let me know how it goes in the comments below, and subscribe to RawYogaFitness on YouTube to learn more fun healthy lifestyle tips.
Much happiness and enjoy life!