Meditation and Mindfulness

Many of our patients come to us in times of need, seeking help for a specific issue. There are issues that are either ongoing and chronic or very acute. Both can contribute greatly to someone’s mental and emotional states. Often for many patients, it’s more of a vicious circle of what caused what. Did stress and anxiety cause the digestive issues? Or did the digestive issues cause the stress and anxiety? Either is a possible scenario, and both have stress and unease in common.

Because of the whole food supplements we utilize, stress and anxiety can be greatly helped through replenishing nutritional deficiencies in the body. Calming minerals, like magnesium, become depleted, hormones become imbalanced, and adrenals become taxed after days and months or even years of worry. While what we do with patients is very valuable and helpful, I also emphasize the importance of having “me time”, of being mindful and taking even just 10 minutes each day to clear thoughts and meditate. For some, in the beginning it can seem like an impossible task to sit still for even 10 minutes and not think about anything. Not your bills, not your health, not your kids’ needs, not your boss or deadlines. Just find a quiet place and be still.

With the use of technology these days, meditating has become both easier AND harder. There are many apps out there that make meditating easier because they offer both guided and open meditations. My favorite app for this is CALM.

You can do a series of meditations on a given topic like forgiveness or you can just set the app to a designated amount of time and sit back and listen to one of the many options for sound.  My favorite is the beach setting. Conversely, technology has made meditating far more difficult because it is so much harder to tear yourself away from that little screen and not allow yourself to be interrupted by a text, call, Facebook notification, or email.

The many benefits of meditation and mindfulness are endless and include better stress handling, improved immunity due to less stress, happier disposition, clearer mind to offer your loved ones, improved attention span, reduced stress and anxiety, and improves sleep!

Next time you are feeling the weight of life a little too heavy on your shoulders, ask yourself when you last had just 10 minutes to think of nothing but your breathing. Check out the CALM app and sign up for Deepak Chopra’s quarterly meditation challenge! I love taking his 21 day challenge and have completed almost every one of them in the past few years. It is just 15 minutes per day for 21 days. You owe it to yourself!