Meditation is for nerds.
You should be one.
If you did not already know, research has shown a regular meditation practice can sharpen our concentration, fight depression, and have a positive effect on our overall health. Most recently, Scientific American‘s November 2014 edition had research into meditation as their headline story. The article, called Mind of a Meditator, was listed under the Neuroscience section of their magazine. Why? Because übernerds study meditation. Thank goodness they do! Meditation has been shown to not only change the activity of the brain but also its physical structure. Neuroplasticity, or the ability of the brain to change, means there is still hope for those of us who feel they have killed a few brain cells over the years. *ahem*
How does the research apply to you in the real world? I cannot think of a better time of year when we could use some mental zen. The holidays tax our energy, our patience, and our finances. The ability to tap into a skill set that helps us stay present and create an inner state of calm is crucial for navigating the holidays without incident. No one wants to lose it on their boss for giving them a subscription to the Jelly of the Month Club.
The next time you feel like your head is about to explode, do this:
- Recognize you are reaching your limit. You cannot change what you are not aware of.
- Say “STOP” to yourself in your head; this will be your holiday mantra.
- Take a deep breath in and out of your nose. Take another. And another.
- Feel how the physical body changes. Notice how the negative thoughts melt away.
Try out the above and let me know how it goes. Share your experiences on my Facebook Page.
If you would like to learn how meditation can help you, sign up for my 3rd Annual R&R Like a Ninja Workshop – Holiday edition December 13th. I will guide you through the three meditations mentioned in the Scientific America article, namely focused-attention meditation, mindfulness or open-minded meditation, and compassion and loving kindness meditation. Plus there will be treats. Register here.