Breathing and Meditation…

From studies to doing exercise, keeping up with friends to attending classes.

In the midst of all this madness, I started wondering…

Ever so often we get terribly caught up in our busy lives. Responsibilities , priorities, conflicts, tiffs… lacking all peace, calm and tranquility. Just so many different thoughts rushing here to there in our little brain, with serenity having no place whatsoever.

I have good days which are full of delight and bliss, nothing going wrong, just everything being in place. Contrarily, I have bad days (or bad times) wherein things just seem out of place, my mind has so many different thoughts zooming here to there and I just lack headspace. Teenagers are perhaps under more pressure today than in the previous generations, with the constant distractions of social media and increased competition.

The effects are for all to see. We laugh less and blow up more. We age faster. We fall sick due to the mind-body linkage. My father and I play this simple game when we go to any restaurant. Just look around and count the number of ‘happy’ faces. Sadly, 8 out of 10 families near us lack any smile and are often busy in their individual gadgets. I mean why come to an expensive restaurant if we still don’t find our contentment?

So what is the way out?

We have to learn to be in the moment, learn to relax, and not stress the small stuff. Enough studies have shown that meditation or yoga can preserve anti – aging parts of cells called telomeres and reduce cellular stress. So this post is going to be on exactly that…

First of all, let’s talk about Breathing…

I’m not going to bore you with any detailed yoga techniques or anything but the main idea here is to be rhythmic and conscious about it. Breathing gives you the strength and power to do what you couldn’t do earlier.

The best link between our mind and our body is our breath. It follows the flow of our thoughts and helps us to live in the present.

You can do this by going out in the nature, and just breathing. Inhaling and exhaling, while only thinking about everything in life that makes you happy right now, forgetting about all the misery the day has been giving to you. To be honest, whenever there is either too much studies, or I just need a break from people I just go outside and cherish nature while breathing it all in. And realistically in that moment there is nothing else I would ever want. So much peace just automatically comes to me, and after that, doing my homework or whatever becomes so much easier. Or when I am about to shout, just watching my breath go in and out suddenly changes the perspective and lets the moment pass without the need to burst out. Even having a jog around does exactly the job.

The only little technique I will suggest is to breathe into your stomach (so it stretches out when we breathe in), and crunch your stomach when you exhale. This way, while exhaling, it is almost as if the entire stress inside is being thrown out.

Then there is Meditation and Yoga…

Meditation is something that relaxes the mind and eliminates negative thoughts, anxiety, and worry. It helps us to control our mind and our life and discover our true nature. Whenever you feel like your mind is filled with too many thoughts, out of your long long day, even setting aside 30 minutes to focus on the brain lets go off any confusing , exasperating thoughts all compressed inside.

Also giving a go at the thing you couldn’t do earlier becomes a lot easier. While meditating, you try not to think about external things, the idea is to focus inwards, perhaps even our breathing. In meditation circles you’ll often hear the term “monkey mind.” The “monkey” refers to how our primate relatives are able to swing from one branch to another with awe-inspiring skill. Similarly, our minds bounces from one idea to another, but rather than inspire awe, this restlessness and lack of calm often fills us with anxiety.

So by meditating your mind, you declutter it, exactly how you clean a closet and it starts to look better, your mind feels a lot cleaner too. And that’s something anyone wishes for, whatever age they might be, which leads to another thing that meditation can be for any age. Meditation leads to a happier and a more sorted life. (And even calms that little monkey down!)

Then there comes good thoughts…

The final piece of advice I’ll give is to have Gratitude. No matter what’s on your mind, let go off all the negative thoughts and be grateful for what you have. I mean, I see homeless people every single day on Mumbai streets who, no doubt have much much bigger problems in their life. And when we shout or get irritated on little things, we often don’t realise that our problems are not even close to theirs. Real serious problems like having a major health issue or death in the family doesn’t really happen to most of us. So I often wonder what right do we have to complain.

Also, learning how to forgive people lets go of some stress. It is said when we forgive, we help ourselves much more than the other person. If you’re really angry at someone for any reason, all those negative thoughts will keep on coming into your head. But simply forgiving that person will chill your mind and theirs too.

Correcting your mindset leads to a positive life and being in that state of bliss, and for many many situations, you can have control over your mind. So breath in…breathe out… and get ready to conquer the world 🙂

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