Here we go again. A new year of resolutions: I will exercise every day, I won't eat sugar, heck I will become a vegan, I will spend more time with my kids, I won't work so much, I will take more time off, I will give up alcohol, ok maybe just beer, I will learn meditation and mindfulness because I heard it works on stress and I want to give up stress too. It's going to be a great year!
1. a firm decision to do or not do something
2. the action of solving a problem, dispute, or contentious matter
Even the definition sounds like we are setting ourselves up for failure.
I find that people who set "intentions instead of resolutions" are far more likely to see results. For example, if I say, "My new year’s resolution is to lose twenty pounds over the next six months," that can add a lot of stress which might make you want to eat more (plus one of your resolutions was to reduce stress). However, if I set an intention to lead a healthier lifestyle then I may just choose to put the ice cream back during those late-night hours as I remind myself "Alexa you said you were trying to live a healthier lifestyle.” That intention alone can help you make all types of healthy choices: like taking the stairs instead of the elevator, spending more time in the outdoors, using natural cleaning products, and on an on. One intention, multiple great outcomes. Less stress, more success.
And the feeling of success is easier to attain when you start with a bit of peace. From the Dalai Lama to Jack Kornfield, there is always a lot of discussion about peace, clarity, compassion and courage, all things needed to live a full life of good intention. I always say find peace first then the rest will follow.
To find peace, first you need to know what is going on inside yourself, inside your head! Science and technology are advancing our worlds in leaps and bounds but what about your head and heart? We are complicated creatures with tens of thousands of things going through our consciousness and only a handful happening in the executive portion of our brain. When you dream that you are holding your cat in a frying pan while you are skiing in a ball gown, you wake up and say "wow that was a weird dream" but truthfully millions of disassociated things are going through your head all the time and we need to get the train of your mind to stay on the tracks and lead it where we want it to go.
You have heard the saying "you can do anything you put your mind to," but we also know it isn’t easy, our minds are very busy. So busy that we don't see that we are unfocused, un-energized, tired and maybe even a little cranky.
Here is why learning to incorporate meditation and mindfulness into your life in 2018 can be the simplest yet most impactful starting point for a peaceful, less stress filled 2018. And, if you need science to prove it works there are lots of (good) studies to prove it.
MEDITATION AND MINDFULNESS - THE BASICS OF WHAT IT CAN DO
(below are 4 achievements you will conquer through the process of meditation and mindfulness. Over the next couple of weeks, follow my blog and we will explore each one of these in more detail)
(1) Calm your nervous system – FACT - Feel better and be healthier right off the bat. You are already on your way to a better immune system, better digestion, increased metabolism, lower blood pressure etc. with very little investment to start. Think 5 minutes.
(2) Improve focus - PROVEN - You can slow down, get more done and get it done quicker by not only having better focus but actually focusing on what you WANT to focus on, when you want to. Get 'er done and take all that extra left-over time to do something fun!
(3) More engaged - SOUND WEIRD? - nope. A calm, clear, peaceful mind means that you can actually listen better, be nicer to be around, and effectively interact with the world, including your kids, friends, spouses, aging parents, employees, etc. There is nothing more powerful, beautiful and respectful than being completely engaged, enjoying the moment you are in, with those in your life that you care most for.
(4) Less Reactive - ARE YOU REACTIVE? Yup, I bet a lot of your new year’s resolutions were made in reaction to something. Meditation and mindfulness trains your brain to quickly notice what your reaction might be, and then actually react the proper way, the way you would want to, had you had the time to think it all through. Normally we: blow up, shut down, blame others or maybe a combination; none of which is effective or guided by our intentions.
NEW DISCOVERIES IN SCIENCE - NEUROPLASTICITY -YOU CAN CHANGE YOUR BRAIN!
HOW GREAT IS THAT? We can learn some simple techniques that can make a great impact on our lives. On how we see ourselves and the world we live in, on our health and well-being. It's like a having a secret weapon available at all times. Whether you need to take a test, make a decision, create a new company, comfort a loved one or choose to put the ice cream back......join me in discovering what meditation and mindfulness can do for you. It's not the McMindfulness people worry is attacking the world as is plastered on the front cover of magazines (although these are pretty high brow publications) it's an age-old practice, in a new era, it's cool and it's cheaper than a gym membership.
LET’S MAKE THIS THE BEST NEW YEAR EVER
Join me in the coming weeks as I discuss ways to find help you to find more time in your day, discover how to build your EQ (Emotional Quotient) much less what can happen to your IQ (Intelligence Quotient), lessen the burdens of relationships much less build relationships, change your view on listening, learn that stress is actually a good thing (if handled properly) discover how you can change the neuroplasticity of your brain and much more.
Alexa Zaledonis has studied and practiced meditation and mindfulness for more than 30 years. She is certain this practice has guided her through the highs and lows of her life. Zaledonis teaches and coaches individuals, groups and corporations in simple but profound ways, making meditation and mindfulness accessible to everyone. Her goal is to make these practices as routine as brushing your teeth, you just do it, nearly impossible to forget.
Alexa has studied with great teachers like Sarah McLean and Kamini Desai and is available to bring these great teachings to you or your group. Meeting you where you are at… today. Follow her blog at EvenKeelLiving.com and follow her tips on Instragram @alexameditates.