Benefits of Nature,Yoga& Meditation

Mindfulness practices have brought peace, calmness, and positivity into my life. I just wanted to discuss some benefits to these three practices. I always feel much better doing each of these practices, some may be more difficult to do than others. I still try to keep these things in my life, because they can always bring me back to my mindful state of mind, and help make my mindfulness nature much stronger. I think having these three things in your life can make you a more mindful and happier individual.

Nature

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Studies show that nature has a positive effect on your mental and physical health. An article mentioned two reasons why nature has its benefits.

Psycho-Evolutionary Theory-Natural environments reduce stress level, because it has qualities are ancestors needed for survival.

Attention Restoration Theory-Sharpest patterns of nature are positively stimulating to a fatigued mind.

This makes sense, my mind feels much clearer and calmer after walking in nature. I always feel a sense of peace, and have a relaxed mind and body afterwards. I feel fresher ,and rejuvenated after a nice walk in nature.

There was another study with Indiana University & Illinois University. They found people who went hiking at a park, or wilderness showed increase signs of joy, and a decrease level of cortisol(hormone involved with stress).

That joyful and more relaxed feeling you get after walking is built in us. We need nature. It helps bring us back to the basics. That is where it all began, in nature.

Yoga 

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This practice is associated with improved flexibility, metabolism, muscle strength, better focus, lessen chronic pain, lower blood pressure, and stress reduction. According to a team of scientist in Brazil, they found women to have greater cortical thickness in parts of their brain that associated with cognitive functioning. In short, yoga can help defend against aging minds. It helps keep the mind and body younger.

I enjoy this practice. It is nice to give my body the stretch it needs. I like to be able to move around as I get older, and I feel practicing yoga can help with that. My body and mind feel much better after a yoga session. Yoga is good for your mental and physical health. It is important to incorporate this practice to our lives.

Meditation

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This practice may be the biggest part of Mindfulness, but can be the most difficult practice to do. I say for me, it is. It isn’t easy for us to sit still in the busy world we live in. It is ingrained in us to move and keep going. But we should try and make an effort to sit still, because this practice really does help bring peace to our lives.

According to healthline.com studies have shown meditation helps reduce stress, control anxiety, promotes emotional health, reduces activity in the “me center” of the brain, helps preserve aging minds, improves attention spans, control pain and improve sleep.

I believe it heightens clarity and calmness of the mind. It reduces stress levels, and improves your coping skills. These have all been benefits of meditation for me. There is just a sense of calmness, positivity and peace after practicing meditation.

The benefits of these practices are wonderful additions to our lives that we need. They help meet our physical, mental and emotional needs. Our minds and bodies need these practices. I believe these are practices we should incorporate in our lives for a more satisfying and fulfilling life.

 

Chasing Happiness

We find ourselves chasing happiness. Not realizing it is right in front of us. The only way to find true happiness is within ourselves. It is about acceptance, appreciation and gratitude of who we are and what we have.

Trying to find happiness through external sources(success, life dreams, money, objects) will just lead to stress, anger, frustration, jealousy among other negative emotions. You try to seek happiness, but end up seeking sadness instead, because expectations are trying to be met.

Happiness isn’t something to obtain. It is always there, just like all other emotions. You never seek sadness, but it finds its way to appear. Happiness can also appear once you find peace within yourself and life. You just have to learn to appreciate the things around you, and be content with how things are.

Happiness isn’t static. It shouldn’t be the main goal. Like all emotions, it comes and goes. There will be times you won’t be happy, and that is okay. Don’t beat yourself up for not being happy. It just ends up making you feel worse.

In the end, happiness isn’t something to seek, it is just there. You just have to learn how to allow it into your life. There is no need to search for it.Awareness, appreciation, satisfaction, understanding, acceptance, and positive thinking all can contribute to happiness.

Nordic nations seem to have the formula correct. They are consistently listed as the happiest countries. Why? Because of their satisfaction of the simple things in life. They aren’t the richest. They aren’t particularly career driven. They don’t seek money, and they aren’t materialistic. They just want to live their lives, enjoying the beauty and experiences of the world. They live life in a comfortable environment as freely as they can making connections with the people around them. It seems this is the right formula to ensure happiness. This can create a longer lasting happy mindset, rather than the short-term happiness from external sources.

 

 

The Art of Not Caring

Okay, it is time to stop caring. It is that simple. Okay, I am kidding. I know it is a process to get to that point. Now when I say not caring. I don’t mean become a sociopath. It is important to care about yourself, others, and life. What I am talking about is not caring about impressing others, or caring what others think of you.

Living a life to impress others can lead to a miserable and controlled life. I like to say I am at a point where my life doesn’t evolve around impressing others, or trying my best to give anyone a good impression of myself. I am who I am. If you like me, great, if not, great, well, not great, but I’ll live. I don’t need everyone to like me, nor should anyone else.

This mentality is hard to maintain. I am aware that I should try to live my life for myself, and not look to others to live my life. It is easy to put our whole life story online, or the part we want them to see, to impress others, and show them how cool we are. I fell into that trap. I do still post some cool pictures, and fun experiences, but it is more to share my experience online, more than trying to make an impression.

If I get one like, which in my case I usually do. I am perfectly fine with that. I just like to share my experiences, and have something to look back on. Living life for yourself cultivates freedom, content, and satisfaction. If people enjoy the content, great, if not, at least I did.

In the end, this is your life, your journey. You should live it the way you want. We get lost in doing things the way others, or society wants it. You got to get married by this time. You got to get this type of job. You got have the fancy car. You got to get a house. You got to live the dream life? What does that even mean? We all have different dreams. Embrace your own journey. Who cares if you aren’t following what society thinks is the right way to a happy, and fulfilling life.

We focus on what others think. We forget to put emphasis on the self, and what we really want. What actually makes me happy? What do I want out of life?  What helps me reach my goals? What can I do to have a fulfilling, content life? These are questions we should ask ourselves. Not what can I do to make others happy, or impress them. This is about you.

People tend to abandon their true being. Becoming sad, depressed, angry, bitter or anxious, because we allow others to dictate our lives, instead of living the life for themselves. Once you are able to live the life you want without worrying about others opinions. Freedom, and contentment will follow.

The biggest regret in most people who are on their death bed is not living their lives for themselves, so please try to make an effort to live life for yourself. This is your life, your journey. No one else should live it for you. We only have one life here, make the most of it.

There is much freedom living a life for oneself. It may take more time than others to get to this point, but hopefully there is a point where you can be yourself, and live the life you choose. I believe once you are able to accept your self, and who you are. This process will become easier to do.

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Focus on the Journey,Not the Destination

Whatever goal you like to achieve in life.It is a good idea to keep your thoughts away from the end goal. Try to enjoy the journey.

We don’t know the future. We put this idea in our minds that happiness, or the life we dream of will come out of it. The thing is you don’t know if anything will come out of it. Its the future, it is unpredictable.

What you do know is what is going on in the present moment. We should try to embrace the moments in the now. You are in the now. The focus should be on the journey, the steps you are taking to achieve your goal/goals.

Be proud of the steps you are taking to achieve your goal. Be proud that you are taking the steps to achieve your goals. Not many do so. If you are not able to enjoy the journey. You will most likely not be able to appreciate the destination. Happiness can not be obtained this way.

Try not to focus on how long it is taking. We all have our own timetable. Just see it as time to learn, and grow as an individual. We all like to grow, and develop as individuals. This is your time, embrace it.

Rushing through life will not bring happiness. How can one enjoy life rushing, and focusing on the destination? How can one truly live like that? Life is short, try to enjoy the ride. You will get there eventually, or you may not. Either way, you were able to enjoy the journey. It was a learning experience. You were able to do something new, and challenging. That is the wonderful thing about life.

Try to focus on the present. The present is where you live, where things happen. The future is an illusion. A life created by your thoughts can lead to negative emotions. I know, I entertain them at times. You just have to try to remind yourself that what you are doing now is what is most important.

We as human beings always want to grow, so reaching your destination isn’t always the greatest. It just means we will search for another destination. This is why happiness, or the life you dreamed of does not cultivate from your destination. Remember that happiness comes from within.

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Quote Thursday

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It is always interesting what thoughts come to mind when I see inspirational/motivational quotes. My thoughts from this one.

Immerse in the silence and be mindful. There are great lessons learned in silence. Reflection, insight, clarity, and knowledge can be gained from silence. Try not to be afraid of it, embrace it instead.

Now think about what this quote brings to mind from your stand point?

Connecting With Others

We humans are social creatures. Research has shown connecting with others correlates with increased happiness, better health, and a longer life(Mental Health America). Although, being able to be alone is beneficial. It is also beneficial to connect with others. It is all about balance.

Now the connection I am talking about is face to face. Real life interactions. I think it is good for the soul, and mind to connect with someone, be that a family member, friend, coworker, or someone new.

It is really nice to talk to someone face to face. There is just something beautiful about experiencing moments with others. You learn more about them, yourself, and about life. I always learn something new, or get inspired talking to others.

I think it is important for our happiness, and peace of mind to meet up with other people, talk, and experience enjoyable moments together. I know we live in in a digital world, and that can take the place of face to face conversations, but it doesn’t have much value compared to real life conversations.  It can be quite therapeutic. I mean talking in general is therapeutic, and it can be a lovely experience.

It is nice to be around others, living in the moment, experiencing life, and talking to each other. It would be nice to keep your phones at a distance around others. You can experience the moment with others much better. Sometimes we get caught up on our phones, but your time will be much more useful spending the time chatting with others.

This was inspired by a nice day out with family. We sat at the park, talked, ate some food. I had a wonderful time just talking to them about life, myself, and their lives. It was an experience I wouldn’t trade for the world. Those moments are the ones we should cherish. Time spent with others connecting.

There is a difference between connecting with others, and spending time with others. Quality is important. The conversations, insight, understanding, and meaningful conversations gives us the connection.

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