First of all, what is mindfulness?
Bob Stahl, PH.D. & Elisha Goldstein, PH.D. define it as, “Mindfulness is about being fully aware of whatever is happening in the present moment, without filters or the lens of judgement. Put simply, mindfulness consists of cultivating awareness of the mind and body and living in the here and now.”
So why is it so important? I believe what happens in the mind shows up in the body. When I’m anxious my heart races, my breath is short & fast, I get queasy, I can’t concentrate & my body feels tight. When I’m sad I feel weak, fatigued & heavy. These are just symptoms I can see on the surface. What’s happening deeper inside? I believe these mental fluctuations & symptoms cause sickness as well as physical pain. I know this because when I’m suffering from anxiety or depression I get sick more. When I’m happy I feel motivated, social, healthy, mostly pain free, less headaches, I sleep better, etc.
Mindfulness does SO many positive things for our mental & physical wellbeing. It helps you build a better relationship with yourself & closes the gap between mind & body. You become more aware of what is going on internally & externally. You learn how to process this information quicker & more precisely. You learn how to filter this information out of your physical & mental body vs. obsessing over it, pushing it down, or allowing it to fester & develop into mental & physical trauma. When a problem arises, mindfulness allows you to acknowledge it without judgement, teaches you how to process it in real-time & provides tools like; meditation, breathing techniques & more to nip it in the bud before it grows. This practice will change your life; you’ll get sick less, sleep better, feel less pain, relationships will improve, you’ll feel happier, motivated, productive & more!
The most important relationship you’ll ever have is with yourself & the most important key to a healthy life is the state of your mind! Mental health needs WAY more attention & we need to break the stigma! Prioritize your mental health by adding some mindfulness techniques to your daily routine & watch everything gradually fall into place.
When living with a chronic or terminal disease you have to talk about it a lot! I lived at the doctor’s office, I lived in hospitals, the dialogue was always about my disease. That eventually bled into all of my conversations with family, friends, people I had just met, etc. Two things happen, in my opinion, you get so used to talking about your disease that it just becomes natural to talk about it, and you become addicted. Just as someone gets addicted to a drug, or trauma, you become addicted to your “disease.” My disease, Lupus, became my crutch and excuse for everything, for all my problems. It was the reason I couldn’t do this or that, it was the reason I was a certain way, or acted a certain way…but it wasn’t. I was swimming in my own sorrow. Of course my disease is limiting, there truly were and are certain things I cannot do, but where did I draw the line… I didn’t.
Continue reading “You Are NOT Your “Disease””
THEM: Hi, what do you do for a living?
ME: I’m a yoga teacher
THEM: Oh God, I would die if I did yoga! I’m just not flexible enough.
Hmmmm… 9 times out of 10 this is the response I get when I talk to someone about yoga. Rarely do I hear that they don’t do yoga because they’re scared, don’t have enough money to join a studio, don’t have time, or because they think yoga is weird. This is ALWAYS my response: “That’s exactly why you NEED to do yoga. Yoga helps you become flexible, in your body and in your mind.”
So, let’s talk about this. How can yoga help the inflexible become more flexible, on and off the mat.
Continue reading “I’m Not Flexible Enough!”
It has been said that we have anywhere from 50,000-70,000 thoughts per day and it could even be more. That’s insane! Our brain is beautiful, magical, wonderful, powerful, and its also…a liar! Think of all the silly things you think about during the day. “I’m fat, I’m stupid, I’m not good enough. I’ll never get this job, he/she will probably never call me again. My dad called 3 times, I bet something horrible happened to mom.” You know exactly what I’m talking about. We drive ourselves completely insane…over NOTHING! Some of these things are important for our survival; “Don’t touch that it’s hot, you probably shouldn’t walk down that dark alley alone, it’s dangerous.” These things keep us alive and safe. So how do we weed out the unnecessary thoughts and hold onto the ones that matter. Can meditation help?
Continue reading “What Happens When We Meditate?”
Victims of the past. How often are we actually living in the past vs. the present? I’m guilty, I know I am. I work very hard to take from the past what I need to be a stronger, wiser, better person, and let all the rest go. I try to let all of the things that are no longer serving me disappear from sight. This is so much easier said than done.
Continue reading “Victims Of The Past”