Often the difficulty we have in trying to meditate is when we are attempting to concentrate on not concentrating on anything at all. It’s a conundrum that leads us in circles. It can be especially frustrating when it’s our restless “monkey mind” that we are trying to relax in the first place.
Thankfully, sometimes in life things can be a lot simpler than we think. And meditation is one of those things.
Calming the monkey mind
As Tibetan Buddhist master Mingyur Rinpoche explains, instead of trying hard to focus on getting rid of all your mental chatter, all you have to do is to give your monkey mind one simple job…focus on breathing:
What’s equally as helpful to know is that you don’t have to be in sacred spaces or attend any special classes to meditate. You can meditate just about anytime, anywhere, for as little time as you want.
So take a breath, and relax, even for a few moments if that’s all you can spare. It can really provide some rest to your mind that it so very well needs and deserves, and in turn improve your overall happiness.
I recently read an article where a New York Times writer remarks on how yoga typically gives her anxiety because she wonders how long she has to stay in position before she can check her twitter feed. It occurred to me that she’s exactly the type of person that would reap some of yoga’s greatest benefits.
One side bonus of practicing yoga is being away from all external demands, all distractions, all social media. Sure, many of us rely on staying as connected as possible for our work. But if we’re not dealing with a life and death situation, it would help us a great deal if we allow ourselves to unplug for at least Continue reading →
Did you know that relaxation response techniques can greatly reduce health care costs? According to recent a study by Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, regular practice of yoga and meditation can reduce the need for health care services by 43%.
For this mini-lesson we will pay attention to The Complete Breath Standing. The room should be well ventilated and quiet. Soft, gentle music playing in the background is okay.
It is strongly advised to never practice on a full stomach. Please wait at least 90 minutes after having eaten a full meal. And always be sure to check with your physician to make sure these exercises are okay for you.
Complete Breath Standing
Let us now begin. Standing with feet together, slowly raise your arms while simultaneously inhaling and lifting your heels to stand on your toes. If you have trouble standing on your toes you may keep your heels down. Continue the inhalation, and raise your arms until your hands touch overhead. Hold to the count of five.
Slowly exhale as you lower your arms and rest on the soles of your feet. Continue a deep exhalation until your abdomen is contracted entirely. Allow yourself Continue reading →
Proper breathing. Although you’re supposed to do it automatically, you don’t always. Or at least you don’t always do it properly. Most people are not even aware of their poor breathing habits. And poor breathing can take its toll.
Breathing wears many hats
Proper breathing is one of those things most people take for granted. Of course you need to breathe in order stay alive. But as if keeping you alive weren’t enough, breathing has additional critical job responsibilities.
Good morning, Namaste. Before you go for that strong cup of coffee, try this brief eye opener mini yoga lesson. Afterwards you just may want to forget about the high-test and make it decaf because you no longer feel the need for the caffeine!
You can keep your pj’s on…sure, keep them on! You will want to awaken slowly, no hurrying or rushing. Allow yourself to begin your day in a more Continue reading →
Breathing. The life force of our being. How we all take for granted the beautiful rhythm of our breath. When we are hurried or under stress, we tend to hold our breath and in turn lose vital energy. Let’s take a couple of moments to focus on our breath and hopefully find ourselves a little more relaxed, refreshed and energized.
You may want to sit in a Lotus position, seated on the floor cross legged, if you are able to. Or you can choose to lie down on a blanket, towel or mat. You can even practice the following if you are seated at your desk. You may also want to consider practicing this at bedtime to help you fall calmly to sleep.
Ideally you will practice the following in a room that is comfortably warm, without any Continue reading →