September has come and we gradually return to our routine. I missed blogging and sharing ideas and thoughts! To ease our way through fall, let us talk about some easy ways to de-stress and clear our minds.
The idea of mindfulness has received a lot of interests lately. It derived from the need of the professionals to use the advantages of meditation in a non religious way. Research showed that meditation can reduce significantly the symptoms of anxiety and depression, it can improve the quality of sleep and the general quality of life. These improvements begin within only a few days of meditating and with simple 10 minutes sessions. But meditation was linked to eastern religious practices and many people were skeptic towards practicing it. Professionals decided to use the term “mindfulness” to describe the practice of simple meditations without religious content.
If you feel like trying it and receiving its numerous benefits I highly recommend you try headspace. You can either view the webpage or download the application on your smartphone.
It introduces you to mindfulness in the easiest way. You can see short videos with the cutest animations that explain how the brain works and what you can do to relax your thoughts. The first 10 introductory sessions are free and if you want access to more guided meditations you can register and access them. I have found them really helpful and I have enjoyed them a lot. It is also fantastic that you can access them through the app on your phone wherever you are!
It has been shown that running helps most people relax and de-stress. This is linked to the hormones produced while running that help combat the feelings of anxiety and depression. If running outside being in nature and listening to the sounds and enjoying the views helps one be present and serene. Being present is a huge part of mindfulness. When you focus on the present you stop worrying about was has been and what might happen in the future and you begin to feel calmer. Headspace has a guided meditation one can practice while running which is really good.
Another recent trend is a series of coloring books for adults. They are full of intricate designs that you can color and by focusing on this activity one can express his creative nature and be present. All these leads to less stress. You can find these books in most bookstores. Also on amazon here. It is worth finding a good set of coloring pens that are smooth in writing and have nice vibrant colors. I really love this set.
Listening to music, dancing, singing, and playing a musical instrument all help us relax. Again they make us be present and help us release any tension we may have.
What is your favorite way to relax, clear you mind and relieve stress?
I hope to make a part two of this post with more ideas …