Harnessing meditation for physical and mental health

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Taking a short daily time out boosts you mentally and physically

Meditation, one of the older forms of self-care, has become on-trend over the past two decades, and even more so over the past few years with the surge of mindfulness. For most people, the biggest challenges of meditating are twofold: truly clearing your mind while you sit still and attempt to focus inward, and sticking to a meditation program.

The benefits of meditation are numerous and documented: reduction of stress, anxiety, and much more. It is important to note that with the reduction of those negative feelings comes a reduction in illnesses that are brought on by weakened immunity, and other preventable medical conditions.

Being mindful, present in the moment, can do you a world of good. Let’s explore the basics:

Set the mood

Some tips on how best to prep yourself for a meditation session are in order. You need to find a quiet space where you can sit uninterrupted for your chosen period of time. The area should be comfortable, and free of distractions – early on at least. Once you’ve gotten into the habit of meditating, you’ll fine you’re able to mentally phase out your environment. Some people prefer to meditate to white noise or ambient sound, and some to soft music like light instrumentals. Experiment with the settings and sounds that are right for you.

Set a program

Once you have decided on setting and sound, you’ll need to decide on a meditation schedule and schema that best suits your lifestyle. Many people prefer a morning meditation to power up for a stressful day ahead, while others prefer a nighttime mediation to unwind, relax, and facilitate a smoother, deeper sleep.

Begin by executing a 10 minute trial meditation for one morning and one evening, and then decide on which session you found more beneficial. Did you feel energized by your morning session? Or was it too stressful setting aside time before work? Was the session before bed exactly what you needed to decompress? Or did it give you a burst of energy? Once you determine whether you prefer morning or evening, then proceed to try out a 10 minute session once or (ideally) twice per week.

Set the goals

For those that have cleared the 10 minute mark and are able to truly “switch off”, then its time to set mindfulness goals. Can you turn that 10 minute session into a daily habit?

Many people report that mindfulness meditation has a powerful impact on their happiness, helps to control daily stress, and fortifies them mentally for life’s challenges. Give meditation a try for a few times per week as part of your self care routine. There’s no place to go but up!

Related: Explore yoga for beginners 

Healthy Living is a frequently updated content section brought to you by the Saudi Sports for All Federation. In the spirit of supporting our #HealthyActiveCommunity, we’re sharing tips around wellness, physical activity and more!

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