Happy Mind, Happy Body, Happy Life
In a previous mini challenge we discussed the power of positive thinking. Today we are going to take it a step further. Today I want to talk about the connection between a happy mind, happy body, and happy life. If you are anything like me, you may find that when it comes to your health, you spend a lot of time focusing on nutrition and exercise. Although nutrition and exercise are two extremely important factors in terms of overall health and well being, we often overlook the third (maybe most important) factor: our minds. To help fix this over site, I have formulated a list of various exercises for the mind you can begin to implement into your health routine today.
Meditation has several mind/body benefits. Too many for me to even discuss in one tiny blog post. To name a few…
- Reduces stress. Research has shown that meditating allows for you to regulate your emotions and gain control of your nervous system. This kind of control allows for you to embrace a mind without agitation. A mind without agitation leads to lower stress levels and a feeling of empowerment.
- Improves concentration. Meditation has been linked to an increase in the ability to focus and retain memory. This allows for less distraction in your day to day life
- Encourages a healthy lifestyle. Taking 15 minutes out of your day to meditate and exercise your mind, tends to promote the desire for an overall healthier lifestyle. Healthy mind, healthy body, healthy life have a much higher success rate if all three are exercised daily.
- Increases self-awareness. Learning what makes you tick is a very important skill to acquire. Meditation brings a level of self awareness that allows for you to feel more connected to your internal self. This connection ultimately leads to feeling more comfortable in your skin.
- Increases happiness. According to Ronnie Newman, director of research and health promotion for the Art of Living Foundation, studies have shown that brain signaling increases in the left side of the prefrontal cortex, which is responsible for positive emotions, while activity decreases in the right side, responsible for negative emotions.
- Benefits cardiovascular and immune health. Meditation induces relaxation. Relaxation has been shown to increases the compound nitric oxide that causes blood vessels to open up and subsequently, blood pressure to drop.
Yoga is very similar to meditation in that it shares many of the same health benefits. If you have a hard time implementing meditation into your daily routine (as many people do), I highly recommend adding yoga. Whether it be at home or in a studio, yoga can help you achieve the happy mind, happy body, happy life connection you need.
Maybe meditation and yoga are just not your cup of tea. No worries! I encourage all of you to find something that relaxes the mind and body for you. Maybe that means going for a long walk, long drive, or a run. Whatever activity puts your mind at ease….do it! Another option to help promote relaxation and a happy mind are various phone apps (yes there’s an app for that). My personal favorites are Headspace, Happify, and Happier. Check them out and see if they can’t help you reach a happier mind-body connection.