Ways To Bring Meditation Into Your Life

by Raven Ishak

The stresses of life can always get in the way of what we want to accomplish out of life, but there really is no need for that to happen, especially if you start incorporating meditation into your life. In this world, there are a lot of ways to reduce stress. Some people love to eat or drink with friends to relax, others have spirituality or religion; stress relievers are many different things to many different people. While none of these are bad ideas, meditation is one method that has been getting more and more popular

Meditating has been around for, like, forever. It's the center of a lot of religions and through breathing practices, you can free the mind of impurities and stress. Being mindful of your body and your surroundings is a great way to act upon your stresses, and I personally, am slowly figuring it out. For someone that has only taken a semester of yoga during my college days, I can already attest how powerful your mind is. Personally, I am very prone to stress; I worry way more than I should and I know it's going to catch up with me.

I've recently started doing small breathing exercises to get me through everyday stresses and it's been quite amazing. I can completely understand why it's hard initially to take up meditation let alone actually go to a yoga class because of the lack of time one might have in a day — but there are ways around that. Below are six tips as to how involve a little bit of meditation into your daily life. Soon, after a few weeks, you too will notice a difference in how you perceive your little stresses, because now you are taking control over them.

1. Meditate Instead of Going On Social Media

This will strengthen your mind instead of aimlessly scrolling through Instagram. Odds are the inspiration you are looking for is already in your brain, and taking a step back from the constant comparison cycle of social media platforms is great for self-care.

According to Dr. John Fagan, a molecular biologist at Maharishi University of Management, mediating two times a day can significantly increase creativity by increasing the flow of blood to the brain which activates the brain's waves a more deeper consciousness and will provide a long-term effect, too.

2. Right Before You Go To Bed

This is a great way to really get some deep-sleep action going. Meditation before bed might seem silly to some, but it is really beneficial to your sleeping habits and patterns. According to ELLE, Sonia Choquette, celebrated author and spiritual guru, suggested tips for meditating before bed like listening to calming music. "Listening to calming music for a half hour to an hour before going to sleep helps to unwind the thinking brain and helps relax your body as well," Choquette said.

3. Yoga Practice

Of course this one just makes sense. If you never done yoga before, I can personally attest that it's absolutely amazing for meditation purposes. I remember when I was in college, I had the option to take a class credit for it, and it was life changing. I felt more flexible and in tune with who I was. I also felt very peaceful afterwards. Unfortunately, life always got in the way with everyday stresses, so I always tried to practice being centered, but don't just trust my word, yoga is seriously amazing. According to LIVESTRONG, researchers S. Telles, V. Gaur and A. Balkrishna studied 300 people in India who did two-hour yoga practice sessions. By doing so, the anxiety levels of the participants lowered 14.7 percent. While I don't believe anyone has time for a two-hour yoga session, I truly believe that yoga can lower the anxiety level even if it's just a little bit.

4. During Commute

Sometimes you just feel stressed out of no where. It might be because you thought you had a work task under control, but then you forgot to do something, or you get a stressful phone call before you have a meeting. If you are commuting somewhere, and you are trying to relieve that stress, but don't have time for a 30-minute session, don't worry. According to an article on Forbes, a study in Psychoneuroendocrinology conducted by J. David Creswell, an associate professor at Carnegie Mellon University, concluded that even a little bit of "mindful training" can go a long way when it comes to stressful situations. So even if you only have a few stops left on the train, put your phone away and close your eyes, your mind will feel at ease in no time.

5. Take A Shower

This has to be one of easiest and best places to add a little extra meditation into your life: You are alone and the sound of the water can help you feel more centered and focused. According to Jeffrey B. Rubin, Ph.D., a practicing psychotherapist and teacher of meditation in New York City and Bedford Hills, New York, in a Greatest article about meditation, doing a Samu Work meditation will work best while taking a shower. It's a way to slow down daily activities by half-speed and to focus on your thoughts while being mindful.

6. During Work

Your boss will thank you, because mediation is a great way to widen your mind when you feel like your brain is just stuck, which can happen a lot at work. While a lot of bosses and companies (like Google) have asked their employers to do this, it's for a reason "You create a culture of wellness," said Promega's chief medical officer, Ashley G. Anderson Jr. in an Huffington Post article, "If you create a culture in which vibrant physicality is an admired thing, you've achieved a lot. A healthy workforce is a productive workforce." It builds a connection with your work which ultimately makes you feel more aware and in tune with your job.

While it might be natural for stress and life to get in the way, the only way you are going to feel normal again is if you let that stress go. Try a new alternative to a more peaceful and mindful life. Namaste!

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