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  • Just Breathe

    1 posts, 1 voices, 642 views, started Sep 14, 2009

    Posted on Monday, September 14, 2009 by Deb Link


    • Garnett

      Today’s Small Change: Make time for meditation.
      Fast Track to Relaxation
      If you’ve been doing the five-minute breather exercise (taking five minutes each day to simply slow down and be aware of your breathing), you may have noticed that focusing on your breath helps you relax. Today, we’ll take that effect a step further and explore meditation.
      Meditation quiets the internal chatter that you probably hear all day. Usually people meditate by sitting quietly and focusing on their breath, a word, or a phrase.
      Meditation lowers your blood pressure and heart rate and reduces stress. It also reduces the amount of cortisol and other stress hormones your body produces, which may help prevent weight gain.
      Today, choose one of the forms below and try meditating. At first, try setting a timer or stopwatch for ten minutes, ultimately working your way up to 20 minutes of meditation. Sit comfortably in a quiet place and choose one of the techniques below.
      Breathing meditation. Breathe slowly, and count as you exhale: Inhale as you count to four; then exhale for a count of four. Repeat. If you lose track, or you find yourself thinking about other things, simply return your focus to your breathing.
      Word meditation. Repeat a word or phrase over and over to keep your mind from wandering. You might use a word like relax, calm, peace, or still. If your mind strays, simply return to your word and concentrate on it.
      Heartbeat meditation. Place your hand over your heart or fingers over your pulse. After you locate your heartbeat, sit and count for four beats each beat to 4 and repeat like you would with your breath. If you lose track, simply start over.
      Meditation is surprisingly difficult for most people, but try not to let your emotions intrude. Remember, you‘re not being graded on your performance — you‘re simply exploring a new way to achieve greater serenity. The more you do it, the easier it becomes to slip into a deeply relaxed, meditative state.


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