What comes to mind when you think of that word, meditation?

A bunch of weird kumbaya, chanting, ommmmmmmm stuff?

Yeah, well, there is that, but …

The thing about practicing meditation is that it has a whole lot of benefits, both mental and physical.

And you don’t have to spend a lot of time doing it.

Some of the scientifically proven benefits include:

  • Reduced stress and anxiety
  • Improved mental clarity
  • Better quality sleep
  • Decreased blood pressure
  • Learning to manage negative thoughts

I started practicing meditation when I started having severe panic attacks in the morning back around the first of this year. One aspect of meditation involves controlled deep breathing, and when you inhale deeply through the nose and exhale s-l-o-w-l-y through the mouth (lips tightly pursed), it actually sends a signal to the central nervous system to relax.

One huge benefit for me from meditation has been a much more positive mindset, or outlook on life. I have actually learned to manage my thoughts, whereas in the past, my thoughts managed me.

Notice I did not say control my thoughts. Thoughts are thoughts, and they come and go all the time. I saw somewhere that the average person has 6,000 thoughts a day. Where this shit comes from, who knows? In the past, when a negative thought came knocking at my noggin, the door automatically opened, and the negative thought strolled on in and made itself comfortable.

Now, I hear the negative thought knocking — I know it’s there — but I am able to ignore it, and it goes away.

Those two things — learning to relax through deep breathing and how to manage my thoughts — have made a huge difference for me.

There are all kinds of guided meditations that you can find with a little quick research. Meditation for positive thinking; meditation for anxiety; meditation for relaxation; meditation for stress; meditation for sleep; meditation for energy; on and on and on.

I like to do 10 minutes of meditation in the morning.

Ten minutes!

Surely, you can find 10 minutes for a little self-care …

Try it!

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