The Power of Meditation, Mindfulness and Yoga
Meditation and Yoga were crucial in my recovery and in the development of my positive mindset. I never used to practice yoga or meditation until my mental illness took over and I had to try anything to get better. There is something special about connecting with your body through yoga. Not only does it help with circulation, stretching and relaxing of your muscles, but it also helps with developing your mind-body awareness and understanding. Meditation on the other hand helps with slowing your mind and allowing thoughts to pass. By meditating we allow our minds to have some time out. Mindfulness helps with being present and in the moment. By practicing all of these things we can have a massive positive impact on our mental health.
How to Practice Meditation
You can practice in any quiet room. There are excellent guided meditations on YouTube, or you could even practice a breathing meditation. One app that I like to use is Insight Timer (I have no association with this app I just like it) as I find it has a great mix of guided and relaxing meditations. Many of the meditations are free, so give it a go!
For me I practice meditation twice a day, for at least 5 minutes in the morning and 5 minutes at night. Best practice is to do 15 minutes in the morning, 15 minutes after work / study and 15 minutes before bed. But I live in the new world and time is never on our side haha so be kind to yourself and remember that any meditation is better than no meditation!
How to Practice Mindfulness
Mindfulness can be practiced anywhere at anytime. No one even needs to know you are doing it! You can practice just by focusing on exactly what you are doing. A good practice is to eat an apple and focus on every part of that experience. Focus on the feel of the apple, the taste, the smell, the crunch as you bite in to the apple, the feeling on your teeth, the feeling of the apple going down your throat, the sounds, everything. This has a massive impact on slowing down your mind and bringing you into the present. Try and practice at least once a day. Even checking in with your breath at times and studying your breathing will help.
How to Practice Yoga
Yoga requires a bit more effort because I believe it is best to go to a yoga class and get help from a professional teacher, especially while you are new. It also helps by being in a different environment for your yoga practice. Once you have gone to a few classes, you can start to practice at home too. There are great videos on YouTube that will help you as well. I would say to practice at least once a week, but twice or more would be even better. Namaste