Monthly Archives: May 2018

Can Mindfulness Help Anxiety and Depression?

If you’ve been hearing lots of people talking about being mindful or encouraging you to be mindful of certain things, you might start to wonder what this concept actually is.

Unfortunately, not many people take the time to discover more about mindfulness and how it can help them to become healthier and happier people.

By concentrating on this, you can improve many aspects of your life, including your home life, relationships and health and fitness.

What is mindfulness?

When you become more aware of your body, your surroundings and your emotions, this is known as becoming more mindful.

Rather than just rushing through everything and not paying attention to what your body and mind are telling you, it’s the idea that you should stop and take the time to feel and understand more of the things you’re experiencing.

What can you do to become more mindful?

When you smell a new scent, think about whether you like it or not.

If you like it, think about why you like it. Does it make you feel happy?

Does it remind you of something in particular?

Maybe you associate the scent with something and it brings back some happy memories.

Perhaps it brings back some bad memories, but being mindful isn’t always about feeling good things – it’s about understanding what you’re feeling.

In order to become more mindful, think about your different senses and how you can pay more attention to the things you feel.

If you become upset, think about what made you upset and what you could do to avoid it in the future.

If a certain sound makes you feel a certain way, you can use this to either encourage the sound and hear more of it, or try to avoid it so that it doesn’t make you feel negative emotions.

What can improve if you include mindfulness in your daily routine?

Not only will you start to become more attentive and notice more things in your life, but you’ll be able to understand yourself better as a person.

Understanding oneself is very important in order to live a happy and healthy life.

If you listen to your body when it tells you it’s too tired to work out, you won’t rush the risk of injuries. If you push your body when you know it can take more, you’ll see the benefits and rewards.

Being mindful can also help your mental health, since you will become aware of what makes you feel good and bad and the reasons why.

Can Mindfulness Help Anxiety and Depression?

Around 1 in 10 people globally suffer or have suffered from anxiety at some point in their lives, while more than 300 million people around the world have had experiences with depression.

While there are various exercises and practices that you can attempt in order to try and decrease the effects of anxiety and depression, there is unfortunately no definite cure.

One of the ways you can help yourself to relax and potentially help yourself to overcome some of the anxiety and depression you may be feeling is to practise mindfulness.

This is the practice of becoming more aware, not only of yourself and your own body, but also of your surroundings and the environment and world around you.

How can you practise mindfulness?

Beginning to practise mindfulness can seem like a massive task at first, but once you get used to it and give it a go, you’ll see that it doesn’t have to be difficult and can be quite easily incorporated into your daily routine.

One way of practising mindfulness is to spend just 5-10 minutes after waking up to think about how you feel, what you plan to do with the day and what type of energy you are going to try and cultivate throughout the day.

Does it actually work?

Unfortunately, there isn’t a cure for anxiety and depression, so it’s impossible to say whether mindfulness will work for everybody.

However, there have been many positive outcomes regarding studies and experiments which have been done concerning mindfulness and its related activities, such as meditation.

The main reason why mindfulness can help with depression and anxiety is simply due to the fact that the practice helps your mind and body to relax.

This results in taking away some of the stresses and worries that you feel as a result of your anxiety and depression.

It’s important to note that practising mindfulness will most likely take away some of the symptoms and effects of depression and anxiety, rather than completely cure you.

For example, if you struggle to sleep at night because you worry a lot about various things throughout the evening, meditating and practising mindfulness could mean that you relax more at night and therefore fall asleep more easily.

The only way to really find out whether mindfulness can help you is to try it out for yourself.

Make sure that you feel ready to try it and have an open mind in order to get maximum benefits.

3 Types of Exercise That Are Good for Your Mind as Well as Your Body

When we work out, the main focus is usually on our physical body.

While we might exercise to feel better or help ourselves to feel more tired or more positive about body image, we’re usually bothered about how much we’re toning up, how much muscle we’re building or how much weight we’re losing in a given time period.

You can ask most people about their goals from spending time in the gym, and they’ll normally give you physical goals that they are working towards, such as weighing a certain amount or looking a certain way.

However, there are some types of exercise which can be beneficial to your mind as well as your body – here are some examples of the workouts you can do to benefit yourself all-round.

1) Yoga

This is probably one of the most common types of exercise when it comes to ways to improve your body and your mind.

Yoga is great at helping you to feel more confident about yourself while also helping you to become more flexible and healthier in the long run.

If you’ve never tried Yoga, don’t be put off by the idea that you have to be ultra-flexible to join any of the classes or have a go yourself.

There are many Yoga classes for all different ages, bodies and abilities. If you feel nervous about joining a class with other people, you can always find videos online and have a go yourself at home while nobody is watching!

2) Meditation

You might not think of meditation as a form of exercise, but there are many different ways that you can meditate.

Although you might not be getting your heart rate up while sitting there meditating, you’re doing favors for both your heart and your brain.

Meditation has been known to relax people enough to drastically decrease the risk of a heart attack, as well as reducing blood pressure.

3) Tai Chi

Tai Chi might not look like the most difficult of workouts to pull off, but you could be surprised at just how difficult it is.

Just because something is slow doesn’t necessarily mean it’s easy, and just because you’re moving quick doesn’t mean you’re performing at your best.

Tai Chi is a series of slow movements that will help you to focus better, improve your concentration and also tone your body and improve flexibility.

4 Major Sources Of Procrastination And How To Beat It

No matter how you frame it, one of the biggest enemies in life is procrastination.

So loathed is this enemy, and how negatively we see it, has led us to use different words to describe it so that we can tell ourselves that we are not procrastinating.

  • Lazy
  • Recharging
  • Resting
  • Hibernation
  • etc

Some of the words we use as an alternative to procrastinating actually have negative connotations. Yet we still use them to describe the act. Which is a reflection of how gloomy we attribute the word to.

While some people see procrastination as a mortal enemy and constantly try to defeat it. Others see it as part and parcel of life and embrace it like an indulgence.

No matter where you are at regarding procrastination, there are 4 major sources of it.

1) Avoiding pain

Pain is not all physical. Psychological pain can, in many ways, be much more destructive to a person.

And it can be so much pain to bear that an individual does everything he can to avoid doing things that evoke psychological pain.

The level of psychological pain a person can endure depends from person to person.

So while you might be able to withstand heavy amounts of misery and heartbreak, others might have a very low tolerance for even a minute amount of it.

For example, the prospect of missing the latest episode of your favorite drama series on prime time can be too torturous on your mind to skip it just to catch up on school revision.

2) Fear of failure

I remember a time when I was fit as a fiddle and could do 10 chin-ups easily. Yet I never attempted to go above 10 because I was afraid that I would find out my limit was at 11 or 12. This little fear in me stopped me from ever finding out, or going beyond, my limits.

While the above is not a great example of the fear of failure triggering procrastination, it is still an appropriate example of it.

We live in a world where failure is looked down upon. Even relatives in family gathering love to gossip and laugh over the people around them encountering failure.

It’s not nice. But a fact of life.

The fear of being unable to accomplish whatever task you attempt to take on can lead to hardcore procrastination.

3) Social disapproval

We only need to look at social media to see how important people view social acceptance is in life.

The constant sharing, liking and commenting is very much about social acceptance.

People for example would share stuff that their friends would like and avoid sharing things that would be met with disapproval.

A fear of social disapproval can be a big source of underlying motivation to procrastinate.

There’s nothing worse than spending hours on an activity and being ridiculed by family and peers for doing it.

4) Unjustified

Often times in life, we have to do things that we don’t like, yet are expected of us.

While many still go through the process of doing these “unwanted” stuff, many also refuse to go through with it.

For example, you might feel a little resentment or even anger that your mother laid the expectation on you to empty the trash everyday. You feel that it’s unjustified how you somehow became the person responsible for this task. And decides to procrastinate instead.

You have not been treated fairly. And there’s no justification for you to go out of your way to do a task that has been thrown at you.

There are some basic ways you can apply to defeat this enemy of your residing in your head.

If you have already decided to combat it, you already have the battle half-won. The next step is to take action.

Just do it

I used to go to the gym. And for a period of time, decided to stop altogether because the traveling is just too boring and tiresome.

This simple reason alone was enough to demotivate me from working out.

But I found that I enjoy exercising. The problem was the journey to the gym.

To eliminate this laziness, I forced myself to just get out and make my way there no matter how unpleasant the trip might be. Because once I get there, I would be having a blast of a time.

Set aside time for unwanted tasks

You might see certain tasks as a complete waste of time and therefore refuse to do it.

But maybe a part of you might find that it is necessary to do them. Or else your wife would be nagging at you for the whole week. Or that you would have to sidestep your boss when you see him in the office after the weekend.

In this case, set aside a little time just to complete those pesky tasks.

For example set a time and decide that you would spend 30 minutes for housekeeping. And stop as soon as the 30 minutes expire.

This method helps you to get your ass up and at least get a little stuff done.

Give yourself a treat

Can you recall the last time you rewarded yourself and given yourself a treat?

Most people can’t.

A great way to motivate yourself to take action is to reward yourself with a treat when an errand is done.

For example, you might have always felt a sense of guilt when playing video games for 4 hours straight. You can reward yourself with that 4 hours on the condition that you get a specific task done. You can then have guilt-free gaming and enjoy it better.

Make yourself accountable

When you go public with a declaration of your commitment to beat procrastination, you will feel that others will be holding you accountable to do exactly that.

This is very powerful stuff.

Being held accountable can often be motivation enough to “coerce” yourself into doing something your don’t like, yet knows it is good for you.