Practicing mindfulness is all about going away, coming back and repeating the same all over again.
When someone asks “Are you present here”? We startle for a second and hurriedly answer them with a Yes !. But were we present with all the mind and body to that situation is something we have to question ourselves. To the truth, most of the times we are not.
Our past memories or thoughts are inevitably stuck to our minds so strong that partial attention to the timely moments is lost. Though we believe in being completely present, the fact to know is that we are only physically present and mentally partial absent to the moment but how do we come out of this and be available to the very moment? The answer is practicing the art of mindfulness.
While mindfulness is a natural quality that we are missing upon, it may seem simple to inherit but it is not all that easy. We need to create space and time every day and keep doing it.
Here’s a practice to help you get started
Find a place: The first step, to begin with, is to look out for a place to sit that feels serene, calm and silent to you.
Set a time limit: Well… if you are a beginner, you can always choose a short time of about 5 to 10 minutes. Once you are used to this practice, you can prolong this by gradually increasing the time limit.
Pay heed to your body: You can choose to sit on a chair, on the floor with your legs crossed or any other posture in which you feel comfortable and steady. Make sure to sit in a position that makes you stay long.
Feel your breath: You relax to concentrate on your breathing. Follow your breath as you inhale and exhale.
Notice if your mind wanders: Slowly and unavoidably your attention to your breath will shift to wander on other things that may be on work to complete in the next few hours or your past bitter experience whatsoever. When you notice this, turn your attention to your breath in a few seconds or minutes.
Don’t be harsh on your wandering mind: Don’t be obsessed or angry on yourself for the continuous flashing of thoughts and not paying attention to your breath. Just go back and concentrate
You are all set to go! This is a simple practice to boost your motivation to achieve mindfulness. Not to end up, you got to practice this daily to make it a Habit.
Meditation is an incredible practice, but it’s also extremely hard to make it a daily habit.
Having known the benefits of meditation, I have tried meditating on a daily basis but I have only been able to practice successfully not more than 2-3 days. This has given me a lot of anxiety and frustration on not being able to do a habitual meditation. For those who are beginners, you know what am talking about.
Though I knew how to practice meditation as in
Find a quiet place to sit.
2. Focus on your breath.
3. Bring attention back to the breath, when your mind wanders.
4. Repeat the process.
I knew it was quite easy on hearing it, I still found it tough to make it a long lasting habit on attempting to try out this.
Now with a disciplined practice, I am able to achieve a longer time of meditation than before. If you find yourself in the same place where I was before, the following steps below can help you get over your difficulty.
STEPS TO PLAN A MEDITATION
Set a goal and keep it small
Setting a meditation goal is simple. The goal that you set should must be very small. Setting a time-based goal is the only way you can start off with meditation.
Usually when you start, set a time of meditation that is really really small. You can begin with a time duration of 2 minutes or somewhere less than 5 minutes is recommendable. Anything higher than this would be too long for you to initially rely on concentration.
When you want to form a habit, consistency is the most important part than performance. That is why you should set a small goal so that you are motivated to work on your meditation for short duration.
Make your new meditation practice a small goal
Make meditation your priority
Once you have committed to your goal, then you have to actually make time for it in your daily life. When you want to make meditation a habit in your life prioritizing it is an essential need.
When you prioritize your meditation you start spending a specific time of the everyday. Scheduling your time makes your actions intentional and is also a good reminder as you might definitely forget on some in your busy schedule.
Make your new meditation practice a priority
Find your zone
The next step in planning your meditation habit is to have a place in mind and space for you to practice. Finding a place of meditation is an important task, a place where you are least distracted. Remember the right choice of place only helps you reach your goal specially when you are a beginner.
The time of meditation is a choice of yours too. It could be during the any time of the day. I preferably choose do it in the mornings as soon as after I wake up because that is when I feel my mind and body to be fresh and keeps my entire day all perfect and lively.
Make your new meditation practice in a secured space
Design your surroundings
External distractions has taken control of our minds that we cannot have our complete attention towards a particular task. We check our mails every now and then, browse through blogs, scroll down often on Instagram, Facebook, Watsapp, Twitter or on other social media. Every 10 minutes most of us have got into the habit of using mobile phones.
Arranging your environment prior to starting your meditation is a good practice. For all the starters, switching off your phones or keeping it in another room can help you better in implementing this process.
You might also try getting into your zone a little before the time you’re actually starting in this environment. This will eliminate the need for you to get up again, adding to the resistance you might feel to meditate.
Arranging your environment is something that also works extremely well for other habits like healthier eating. You can make forming that habit easier by throwing away all of your unhealthy snacks.
Make your new meditation practice in your designed environment
Try out the above simple plan for meditation and feel the fruitful effects of Mindfulness and Meditation.
Many reasons throw up when you are about to start working out like I’m stressed out ! I am very tired ! It’s too cold and raining out ! Such reasons pop up externally that pushes us away from your fitness routine. We have naturally created a sense of laziness that has got us to nothing but to a much worse situation.
Lack of motivation is one of the key factors for regular exercises. Shifting your internal bone-loafer to an active goer needs a little self impulse and an outer inspiration to even just get started.
Here are 5 easy tips to keep you motivated and get going…
Enhance workout with music
Music with a fast beat subconsciously travels through your brain down to your fingers which allows them to tap to the rhythm. The rhythm of the music resonates your body movements. Pay attention next time, when you’re listening to music at your desk. Notice how your body moves without any thought.
Music has the power to move us, distracting us from feelings of fatigue and improving our mood when the right music is out in the air. The effects of this is greater when you are jogging, walking, running and weightlifting. Incorporate music into your workout by adding a music from your smartphone.
Find a challenge to join
There is nothing motivating than the first few successful targeted workouts seeing accomplished setting goals can actually help you stay motivated and added to this, being a part of challenge can push you towards your workout goal.
There are so many options out there that offers challenges from specific workouts to a whole body workout.
It can also be helpful to write down your goals and motivational quotes where you can see them everyday.
Food as fuel
Exercise and eating go hand in hand. When and what you eat can be important to how you feel when you exercise, whether it is a casual workout or training for a competition.
By eating a healthy, well-considered meal 1-2 hours before exercise, and another healthy meal within 1-2 hours after exercise, most people can meet their workout nutrition needs without anything else.
Always focus on:
eating more minimally proteins, veggies, quality carbs and healthy fats;
ensuring your portions are the right size, and in the right amounts, for you; and
eating slowly, until satisfied.
drinking lots of water at frequent intervals.
Nutrient timing actually gives you a framework for making good food decisions and controlling total intake. Of course, if that’s you, rock on with the nutrient timing. Nutrient timing won’t suddenly transform your physique or performance. Fundamental nutrition habits consistently increases your ability to workout.
If you’re a recreational exerciser who just wants to look and feel better, nutrient timing might help, but might also be a lot of work for minimal return.
Grab a workout partner
If you are working out alone and you ever have a hard time pushing yourself to do it, you might find motivation from having a friend to help keep you on track. The two of you can plan to work out together, or you can just talk at the end of each day and discuss whether you both met your goals. Talking to a friend can be really helpful for identifying the hurdles that keep you from working out.
One of the best things that we suggest for a healthy living is to exercise daily and have a hearty talk with your loved ones. So you can club these two and have a great time while you workout. Group fitness class can be a great way to find a group of supportive people who will motivate you to work out.
Every time you achieve a goal that you have set, go ahead and pamper yourself. That is the best reward and you will love every bit of it. Make sure to treat yourself with a trip or some goods that you wanted to buy. In case you want to treat your taste buds, go light on calories. Don’t deprive yourself of anything.
So why wait, get started with your daily workout. Along with the above ways to motivate yourself, you can also get dressed up in your workout clothes that could help you stay focused in your workout.
Easter was happening with lots of happiness around the world. Like this…
“Sprinkling” is a popular Hungarian Easter tradition, in which boys playfully sprinkle perfume, cologne or water over a young woman’s head, and ask for a kiss.
People used to believe that water had a cleaning, healing and fertility-inducing effect.
In the town of Haux, a giant omelet made with 4,500 eggs that feeds 1,000 people is served up in the town’s main square. The story goes, when Napoleon and his army were traveling through the south of France, they stopped in a small town and ate omelets.
Napoleon liked his so much that he ordered the townspeople to gather their eggs and make a giant omelet for his army the next day.Relevant reading: Tips on Walking Holidays in France
Besides being crazy football fans, there’s a crazy tradition of creating straw dolls to represent Judas (the apostle known for betraying Christ) and hanging them in the streets and beating them up. And many times politicians involved in scandals become Judas.
But, it’s not all aggression, and on Easter Saturday, called ‘Sábado de Aleluia,’ inspires mini versions of Carnaval in many small towns to celebrate the end of Lent.
4. Seville, Spain
One of the biggest Easter celebrations takes place in Seville, where 52 different religious brotherhoods parade through the streets manifesting the crucifixion, with thousands watching the daily processions of marching bands and decorated candle lit floats heaving with Baroque statues illustrating the Easter story.
Easter in Sweden sounds a lot like Halloween to me, with the children dressing up as Easter witches wearing long skirts, colourful headscarves and painted red cheeks, and go from home to home in their neighborhoods trading paintings and drawings in the hope of receiving sweets.
6. Corfu, Greece
The traditional of “Pot Throwing” takes place on the morning of Holy Saturday. People throw pots, pans and other earthenware out of their windows, smashing them on the street.
Some say the custom of throwing of pots welcomes spring, symbolizing the new crops that will be gathered in new pots. Others say it derives from the Venetians, who on New Year’s Day used to throw out all of their old items.
There are around seven million Catholics in Indonesia, Christianity was brought here by Portuguese missionaries, and statues from this time are carried through the streets.
Young men consider it an honour to be chosen to play Jesus and be tied to the cross in various locations.
8. Czech Republic
On Easter Monday there’s a tradition in which men spank women with handmade whips made of willow and decorated with ribbons. According to legend, the willow is the first tree to bloom in the spring, so the branches are supposed to transfer the tree’s vitality and fertility to the women.
This is meant to be playful spanking all in good fun and not to cause pain.
9. Florence, Italy
A huge, decorated wagon is dragged through the streets by white oxen until it reaches the cathedral, and when Gloria is sung inside the cathedral Archbishop sends a dove-shaped rocket into the cart, igniting a large fireworks display.
Called Scoppio del Carro (explosion of the cart), this is followed by a parade in medieval costumes.
On Good Friday, the locals celebrate by flying homemade kites, eating codfish cakes and hot cross buns.
The tradition is said to have begun when a local teacher from the British Army had difficulty explaining Christ’s ascension to Heaven to his Sunday school class. He made a kite, traditionally shaped like a cross, to illustrate the Ascension.
Here people don’t hide their eggs — they have egg fights – and whoever comes out of the game with an unbroken egg is the winner and assumed to be the most successful member of the family in the coming year.
In another tradition, the oldest woman in the family rubs the faces of the children with the first red egg she has colored, symbolizing her wish that they have rosy cheeks, health and strength.
Whilst in many countries Easter eggs are hidden and children hunt for them, in Germany Easter eggs are displayed on trees and prominently in streets, with some of the trees having thousands of multi color eggs hanging on them.
This Easter, the world has been lockdown. So we everyone enjoy the Easter Sunday at home #stayhome #staysafe #breakthechain
Today’s society tempts us with a huge variety of food choices. Eating has now become a mindless act as distractions have shifted our attention towards televisions, smartphones, games, computers, etc.
This mindless eating is problematic because you unintentionally eat more than you mindfully eat. Here, your brain realizes much later than usual if you are full.
With the absence of mindful eating, the fullness signals from your stomach may not arrive at the right time. U may receive the signal and by that time you would have already eaten too much. This usually happens in Binge Eating.
When eating mindfully, you naturally slow down, pay attention to what you are doing and making it an intentional process than an automatic act
What not, you can clearly find your true hunger cues and fullness when you are in complete recognition of your eating. You also increase your awareness of triggers that make you want to eat, even though you’re not necessarily hungry.
These triggers can create a space between them and you can take your time to react to it wisely.
Mindful eating gives you results on simple things that we push ourselves to work on. Just relax and be attentive to your eating habits.