Mindfulness is key to a stress free life

Meditation is a powerful exercise to reduce stress and restore balance in your life. Photos: Inspirationtravels

POLOKWANE – Review recently spoke to a local fitness junky, personal trainer Liana Fourie on the importance of mindfulness when it comes to living a balanced life.

“The practice of mindfulness can bring many benefits to emotional and physical health, as well as to relationships. Mindfulness is an amazing tool for stress management and overall wellness because it can be used at virtually any time and can quickly bring lasting results,” Fourie explains. She says mindfulness is about taking a few moments a day to reflect on the day’s happenings to prepare you emotionally and mentally. According to Fourie, meditation is just as important to your health as going to the gym.

She shares a few mindfulness exercises that anyone can fit into their daily schedule:

1. Meditation

Meditation becomes easier with practice, but it does not need to be difficult for beginners. Simply find a comfortable place, free of distractions, and quiet your mind.

YouTube video via meditateproperly

2. Deep Breathing

One of the simplest ways to experience mindfulness, which can be done as you go about your daily activities, is to focus on your breathing. Breathe from your belly rather than from your chest, and try to breathe in through your nose, and out through your mouth.

3. Listening to Music

Listening to music is being used therapeutically in a new branch of complementary medicine known as music therapy. That’s part of why listening to music makes a great mindfulness exercise. Play soothing new-age music, classical music, or another type of slow-tempo music to feel calming effects, and make it an exercise in mindfulness by really focusing on the sound and vibration of each note, the feelings that the music incites in you, and other sensations that are happening “right now” as you listen.

Something as simple as listening to music can reduce stress.

4. Cleaning House

Because clutter has several hidden costs and can be a subtle but significant stressor, cleaning house and de-cluttering as a mindfulness exercise can bring lasting benefits

5. Observing Your Thoughts

Many stressed and busy people find it difficult to stop focusing on the rapid stream of thoughts running through their mind, and the idea of meditation and holding off the onslaught of thought can actually cause more stress. Rather than working against the voice in your head, you sit back and “observe” your thoughts, rather than becoming involved in them. As you observe them, you might find your mind quieting, and the thoughts becoming less stressful.

“Any activity can be a mindfulness exercise. Walking, listening to music, eating chocolate, and many other activities can be mindful activities if you perform them with a sense of mindfulness. It helps to practice meditation or another exercise that really focuses on mindfulness, but you can bring mindfulness to anything you do, and find yourself less stressed and more grounded in the process,” Fourie concludes.

Additional information sourced via www.verywell.com

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Riana Joubert

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