This is how I should have ended my previous post. With taking a bigger breath. Though this a crazy time in the world, we must slow down and breathe. It will help us a lot if we do. And the power of the breathe is amazing in what it can do for anyone. We will get through this. We can do it. And I know that we’ll all help each other.
There are different kinds of breathing you can do to help relax and/or calm you down. You can find a quite spot, take a moment, close your eyes and take a couple deep breaths. Pay attention to that breath and not to what’s around you.
Another thing you can do to relax and calm the brain and your breathe, is meditation. You are probably reacting to meditation either with, Nah, that’s not for me. Or, well, I haven’t tried it so maybe I should? It honestly has been a game changer for me. Meditation is something that helps quiet my mind and realize that there’s more to the craziness, than craziness. It also keeps me clam throughout the day.
Most meditations are focused on your breath. But there are also guided meditations and/or meditations with music for specific needs. The meditations can be anywhere from one minute long to an hour. I tend to keep my meditations between 5 – 15 minutes. It all depends on how I’m feeling. And maybe what I want to focus on.
There are many different apps you can use for guided meditations. The two that I use the most are Calm and Insight Timer.
I started with Calm when I first started meditation, almost 2 years ago. I started with one of the short ones that focused on just the breath, two minutes I think it was. After a couple days or time with that one, I started to try for 3 minutes. Again, after a bit of time I added another minute. I think with just the meditations focused on breathing, I was able to get up to 10 minutes. But then I wanted a change. So I took a look at the guided meditations. They have ones specifically for beginners, anxiety, sleep, self care, stress, focus, emotions, and more. They even have sleep stories that you can listen to. (or your kids can listen to!). I tried many of the guided meditations and with them, I found that I could sit there for a good 15 minutes sometimes.
I then started to wonder what other apps might be out there for meditation, as I wanted a slight change. I had heard of so many but I specifically searched for meditations for moms. You know, because moms seem to have the busiest brains. I found the Insight Timer. I downloaded it and started to look around. I found so many meditations! This app you can filter by the different lengths of meditations, different topics, guided, with or without music. There are meditations for anxiety, breathing, energy boosting, balancing of the chakras, emotions and much more! And they are from all over the world. These meditations are great. There is so much free content for you to use to calm your mind. While I still use the Calm app, I tend go to Insight Timer a bit more.
I do find on days where I don’t meditate, I can tell a difference in my mood. It’s crazy to think of how much something as simple as breathing can effect you for an entire day. So if I don’t meditate first thing in the morning (which is part of my morning routine), then I try to add in about a 5 minute meditation at another point in time during my day. Sometimes I’ll do more than one in a day, that’s how much I believe it helps me! I will recognize the difference it makes as soon as I am done and ready to move about again for the day. So for me, the reason I do this is to keep me balanced throughout the day and in the present moment. It calms my anxiety a bit and leaves me feeling a bit relaxed.
If you meditate, what do you use? How does it help you? Why do you do it?
If you don’t meditate, would you try it? Why or why not?
(I know there are many other meditation apps out there that one can download and use. The two mentioned here are just the ones that I found that work for me).