If you have ever tried to keep up with all the daily postings on Facebook, if you have ever tried to surf the internet and find yourself getting sucked into the vast web of content, if you have ever tried to scan all the cable TV channels looking for something good to watch, then you are well aware that indeed, we are headstrong into “the information age.” There is a line in the Jefferson Airplane song, Go Ask Alice, stating: “Feed your head”, and while it didn’t refer to digesting information, there really is no difference in the feeding process. Don’t stuff yourself! Experts in the field of stress management say with great regularity these days that our brains (while quite extraordinary) were not designed (or even capable) of the incredible sensory bombardment of information that we are exposed to today. At the same time, spiritual luminaries remind us of the importance of meditation, which simply defined means this: “increased concentration which leads to increased awareness.” A regular practice of meditation helps clear the head of superfluous details and ego chitter-chatter (distractions) so that we can begin to focus on what really matters, rather than become distracted by all the information eye-candy on the information superhighway. Meditation is not a religion. Meditation is simply a healthy behavior for mental clarity.
Stress Tip for The Day:
So.. it’s time to meditate. Find a quiet spot to sit or lay down, close your eyes and focus on your breathing. If you get bored doing this, know that boredom is part of the meditation process. If your mind wanders (as it surely will), direct your thoughts back to your breathing solely on your breathing. Start off with 5 minutes and work your way up to 10 minutes, then 15 minutes after a few weeks until it become routine: second nature. Meditation should become as regular as taking a shower or brushing your teeth everyday. The benefits of meditation are many, from increased attention span and quality of sleep to an improved immune system and lower resting heart rate and blood pressure. It’s time to meditate!
Links/Books/Movies Worth Noting:
There are scores of books and websites on meditation, and since meditation is incorporated into nearly every religion, most websites have a religious inference (meditation is not a religion, if someone says otherwise…run!) While working with Olympic Athletes years ago, we called exercises in sport psychology mental training, of which meditation is a part. A great book on meditation (mindfulness meditation) is Peace is Every Step by Thich Nat Hahn. There are also several daily meditation books, with a meditation thought per day (my favorites are The Promise of a New Day and 356 Tao).
Quote for the Day:
“I finally get meditation…. It’s like deleting old emails.” —8th Grader at Sunset Middle School
Photo of the Day:
One day while doing some photography at the Denver Botanical Gardens, I saw a man meditating and thought it would make a great photo… Enjoy!
Brian Luke Seaward, Ph.D. is an internationally renowned expert in the fields of stress management, mind-body-spirit healing and stress and human spirituality. He is the author of over 10 books including the bestsellers, Stand Like Mountain, Flow Like Water, Stressed Is Desserts Spelled Backward, The Art of Calm, Quiet Mind, Fearless Heart, Managing Stress (7E) and his forthcoming book, A Beautiful World; The Earth Songs Journals. He can be reached through his website:www.brianlukeseaward.net
© Brian Luke Seaward, Ph.D.