by Derek O'Neill
When you’re in the thick of stressful emotions, it’s very difficult to make a clear decision. When you’re angry and anxious, that’s not the time to have an important conversation with somebody. That’s a battle, not a conversation! The ability to step back and observe what is happening to you at any given moment is empowering. The next time you feel stressed, try stepping back. It will take practice, but in time the reflex of observation can become automatic.
The reason why people routinely pray, meditate, or have a contemplative discipline is to learn a way to always find a calm space. When something triggers them and they need to know the way back to serenity, they can tap into it at any time. You have to train your mind and body to know when stress is becoming overwhelming.
Our attention needs direction and purpose. Left to its own devices it will stray from what we want it to focus on, and settle on thoughts that keep us from being at peace. What we choose to pay attention to, and how, affects the way we experience our emotions and process situations and events.
Though we can often think that the mind works in a well-established manner, and is hard to change as we get older, science again has shown that learning mindful meditation can benefit the aging process. It rewires and restructures the brain, improving alertness and concentration. At any age, quieting the mind boosts its power on both a cognitive and emotional level. Mindful meditation creates a closer, deeper connection and understanding how to manage our feelings. It has also been shown to have positive effects on our health.
When stress is reduced, the cardiovascular system benefits, along with every other function in our body.
Thought, creativity, energy, and productivity show a significant change for the better when we experience less stress.
Living mindfully is one of the easiest and most natural methods of alleviating tension and all of its side effects. Meditation refuels the mind. We have to recharge regularly in order to function as well as we can.