As the saying goes, “a sound mind in a sound body”. People usually approach this from the “body” part, implying that physical health is very important or even essential for the mental, psychological and spiritual well-being of any individual. And although they’re absolutely right, the principle works both ways.
By that I mean that with the help of certain psychological and spiritual practices it’s absolutely possible to improve your physical health too. Lose weight, build muscle, prevent diseases and improve athletic, sexual and overall performance. In general, this famous saying suggests that people should seek harmonic balance between the said two components – mind and body – instead of fixating on only one part of the self.
In this article we’ll go through one of the most famous and effective meditation technique that improves both physical and spiritual health, helps you to lose weight and achieve inner harmony. We’ll talk about Mindfulness Meditation.
What is Mindfulness Meditation?
Long story short, mindfulness meditation is essentially a practice that consists of focusing on the present moment – simple as that. Mindfulness meditation takes significant time and efforts to be mastered, but its effects can be noticed from the very first try. This is explained by the fact that we’re alive only here and now, our past and future being no more than illusions of our existence. Therefore, by expanding our mindful experience in the present moment, we feel more “alive”, much healthier and much more fruitful.
How should Mindfulness Meditation be practiced?
In order to start practicing mindfulness meditation all you need to do is sit on a couch, cushion or chair (everything works, as long as you feel comfortable) – and pay close attention to what’s happening at the very moment of your practice. When you breathe in the air, focus on this very movement and how it feels in your body. When you breathe out, do the same – be aware of that movement of air and of the sensations that come with it. You don’t need to concentrate on something specific, you don’t need to chant mantras or something else of the kind. Just sit there, be still and focus on the sensations, emotions and thoughts that arise and fade in your mind, without being judgmental about any of them. Be aware of what’s happening – and of your sensations regarding it. Meditation is the art to observe without being caught by the object of your observation.
Another way to indulge in mindfulness meditation is to do something monotonous instead of just sitting. A long walk or a quiet bicycle ride – that’s your perfect choice. The only difference is that when you sit you mainly focus on your breath and different random sensations of your body, and when you walk – you should concentrate on every movement that you make, every change in the position and posture of your body. Notice your steps. Notice the distance. Notice yourself at every single moment of your promenade. Enjoy the fact of your existence.
Have you ever noticed how rapidly the time flows by when you’re not aware of your present moment? When we get caught in an exciting activity, a loud party or a passionate love act, for example, we forget about everything and the hours fly by with a tremendous speed. Contrary to that, when we’re concentrated and aware of what’s happening, time slows down and concentrates itself in the fact of our existence.
Of course, that’s an oversimplified explanation of the principle, but it sounds like a credible one. During mindfulness meditation, we accept our current self and our present existence. We listen close to our minds and body, concentrating on what is happening right here and now – in our lives. By doing so, we’re more likely to savor the happiness of being and notice all the beauty there is to it.
How Can Mindfulness Meditation Improve Your Life?
This particular kind of meditation is especially helpful in matters of liberating oneself from bad habits and sudden urges. For example, when adjusting your mindfulness meditation session towards analyzing your smoking habit, you’ll look deep into yourself and see your bad habit “from aside”. Many experienced meditators affirm that understanding the nature of your habit is a great start to get rid of it. Here’s an example of a mindfulness meditation exercise related to bad habit cessation:
“RAIN” mindfulness meditation exercise:
R – Recognize the craving.
A – Allow the craving to be there, without judging it. Notice how it appears.
I – Investigate. Analyze your feelings and emotions regarding the craving.
N – Note the changes from one moment to the other.
Truth is, by being mindful, we protect ourselves from things that aren’t really needed. When we give our bodies enough time to analyze what’s actually happening, we’re more likely to filter our thoughts and deeds, gradually becoming a better human being.
But besides this indisputable effect on our mental side, mindfulness meditation has also some great benefits for your body weight as well. For example, it was revealed in a recent systematic review that a significant weight loss was present in participants of mindfulness interventions. Further researches are still to be done in order to establish how exactly mindfulness affects body weight, but it’s safe to say that one of the means by which this is achieved is a better control over one’s cravings and urges.
In order to achieve an even greater effect, mindfulness meditation should be combined with an efficient diet and a regular workout regime – yoga being one of the best options. In terms of diet, a good shot would be the famous hCG diet, which was scientifically proven to be effective for anyone disregarding age, sex and current weight. Its basis is hCG oral drops, a dietary hormonal supplement that activates the inner resources of your body, boosts metabolism and supports your immune system. All of this helps you to burn fat and get rid of your excess weight. hCG oral drops, yoga and mindfulness meditation – that’s a powerful combination for those of us who want to make healthy lifestyle a real part of their everyday.
Of course, everything said above is just the tip of the iceberg. Meditation is an ancient practice developed throughout the centuries by countless amazing people, with dozens of different approaches to the subject, hundreds of techniques and subtle peculiarities to be discovered. In order to find what kind of meditation is the best choice for you – just dive right into it. Read some more articles, find a specialized website or teacher – and open up your inner self, discover and accept it.
And remember: a sound mind in a sound body. Both are equally important.