A guide to Daily Life Meditation

I’ll be back on October 1, 2020 from my “moving break”. In the mean time, here’s an article that will help you work meditation into your daily tasks and even help you set up a “meditation room” in your home.


It’s no secret to anyone, we are in uncertain and stressful times. We see this phrase everywhere, but, unfortunately, it is true. Many of us feel physically and emotionally exhausted after the covid-19 crisis, as well as the protests and civil unrest. Now more than ever, it’s important to take time to destress and meditate.

If you’re like me, you say “I don’t have time to meditate!” It always seems there are more important things to do. I always feel “guilty” when I take the time to meditate. It’s such a wonderful, peaceful and relaxing time, that it almost feels selfish. On the contrary, that couldn’t be further from the truth. In fact, it just could be the best thing you do for your loved ones. You’ll be happier, calmer and more productive in your life.

What if you could meditate while doing daily chores, exercising and walking? Would that help alleviate some of that guilt? The following article was posted 2 1/2 years ago as part of my “project stress relief” series. It discusses the concept of “daily life meditation”, in which you can meditate while doing chores, cleaning the house, exercising, walking and more.

Here’s the original article:

We are all under a tremendous amount of stress, whether it’s work, school, family, kids, blogs, etc. So, you may be asking why this is a big deal. After all, people have been under stress since time began, how is today any different? In our fast paced world, filled with social media, television. radio, and 7 billion other people, we are constantly bombarded with negative words, energy, commentary, and images.

Anytime we experience stress, our body goes into the “fight or flight” mode. This is the same instinct that kicked in when our ancestors were chased by lions or tigers. Our digestive system shuts down, our blood pressure increase, glucose is flooded into our system to give us energy. (to run from the tiger, remember!) No matter how little or big the stress is, your body will always react the same, as if you are running from danger and your life is at risk.

The below infographic, from the article 17 Reasons To Avoid Stress, by Fawne Hansen at Adrenal Fatigue Solution, gives you an idea as to just how bad all this stress is for us.

I could go on, but I think you get the idea. So if we are under chronic stress, we are constantly in fight or flight mode. This is REALLY bad for you and won’t end well, if you don’t find a way to relax, and soon.

Now we know that all of that stimuli has a huge impact on our body, mind and soul. What’s a busy person to do? As much as we want to, we can’t just stop everything and run to the beach or mountains forever, we can’t, so, we must try other methods. Meditation, even just 10 minutes, can go a long way towards calming your mind and easing the symptoms of chronic stress. However, if you’re anything like me, sitting and meditating is a guilty pleasure, of which there isn’t a lot of time.

However, what if I told you that you could meditate while doing your daily activities, like folding laundry, doing dishes, sitting at your desk at work, walking, running or lifting weights? Would that interest you?

While doing housework, yard work or any other daily activity, there are only a few key points to remember. (These tips are from the House Cleaning video below):

  1. Pay attention to your breathing, and practice deep breathing.
  2. Create a mantra and repeat while cleaning
  3. Dedicate your work to someone else.

If you’d like to set up a meditation room in your home, here is a link to an article from porch.com entitled:

The Ultimate Meditation Room for your Home:

The link below is to an article I did a while ago on how to meditate while walking.

Walking Meditation

The remaining videos will either give you tips or guide you through a short meditation to be used while exercising, cleaning or sitting at your desk.

Enjoy, and try to relax!

How to Make Chores a Mindful Experience

Dishwashing meditation

4 minute at work guided meditation

Stress at work meditation

How to use mindfulness while exercising

Running Meditation: A Meditation for jogging, runners

Short Shower Meditation

8 Hours House Cleansing Frequency Music

Until next time,

wishing you

safety and good health…

Namaste my friends.

The Wellness Mindset: 3 Areas of Wellness to Focus on this Holiday Season

The holidays are meant to be a time of rest, relaxation, hibernation, gratitude, and togetherness. Unfortunately, modern society and commercialism have changed the meaning of our traditions. We no longer slow down to reflect and celebrate with the ones with love. Instead, we work ourselves even harder to afford the material gifts we feel so pressured to buy, and we celebrate by overindulging in foods that only increase our stress.

To combat the holiday blues and get back to the real meaning of the season, here are three different areas of wellness to start focusing on, with healthy tips and solutions to bring with you into the new year.

Mental wellness and combating anxiety

As the end of the year approaches our mental health is usually the first in terms of overall wellness to become unbalanced. Between the holiday stress, seasonal depression, and self-reflection, it can be difficult to find the joy we once felt as children during this time of year.

If you have not yet started a self-care routine, now is the perfect time to develop one! Start by penciling in the time to yourself and say no to anything that tries to get in the way of that. Even if only for 15 minutes a day, take a moment to step away from whatever is keeping you busy. Take a walk in the cold, brisk air and focus on your senses. What does it feel like to be cold? What do you hear? What do you see? Focus on your breath and repeat positive mantras before returning to what you were previously doing. Doing this allows you to enjoy being in the here and now, replacing your negative emotions with gratitude for the present.

If this time of year induces feelings of anxiety and depression, you’re not alone. Click here to read the post: Charlie Brown’s Guide to Holiday Depression.

Physical wellness and nutrition

Much of our end-of-year stress and anxiety can be controlled by giving a little extra attention to our physical wellness. Living a more active lifestyle can help keep some of that stress at bay. Try starting each day by completing a quick guided yoga session on YouTube, take a walking break in the middle of your workday, and get in a cardio or weight lifting session before you head home for dinner. Of course, not many of us can realistically fit this into our schedules every single day, but even implementing three to five days of exercise per week reaps significant physical and mental benefits. Not only will you begin to feel less bloated and more toned, but working out will give you more energy and can help clear your mind of negative thoughts.

Nutrition comes hand in hand with physical activity when trying to control stay healthy and stress-free. Some may even argue that if you had to choose between diet and exercise, you should choose diet. There are so many factors that keep us from eating healthily throughout the year– busy schedules make it tempting to grab take out on the way home and working at an office makes it easy to take one of those donuts up for grabs in the kitchen. The holidays only intensify those urges and increases opportunities to consume foods that make us feel bloated, sluggish, and depressed. Reports suggest that the average person gains between seven to ten pounds between Thanksgiving and New Year, setting you back when entering the new year and putting you at risk for weight-related diseases like diabetes, cancer, and heart disease.

If comfort food is causing you to gain weight, consider joining a guided weight loss program that allows for flexibility in moderation so you don’t have to feel like you’re completely missing out on holiday celebrations. Check out this page dedicated to healthy and easy-to-make meals. Try bringing a few of these dishes to your next holiday party so you don’t have to feel like unhealthy options are your only choice!

Resolutions and goal setting

How many times have you made resolutions in December, but completely forgot about them by January or February? Chances are, you’ve set goals that are either too big or too broad. This year, try sticking to one thing– and get specific! Instead of setting out to “lose weight” this year, it helps to first focus on the bad health habits you currently have that need to be changed. Instead, focus on making it a goal to cut out processed foods, meal prep every Sunday, or quit smoking so workouts become easier and not so dreadful. From there, come up with your next step towards weight loss by writing out a measurable and achievable goal, for example, getting in a half-hour workout three times per week. Once you’ve mastered that, increase your goal to four days and so on. Setting smaller, more attainable goals and reevaluating as you go is much more effective than simply deciding on January 1st that you want to lose fifty pounds this year.

For more information on goal setting read this post on how to write a S.M.A.R.T. goal.

Closing Thoughts

The holidays can be a stressful time of year for many, but with a little effort, the holidays can provide us with a great opportunity to evaluate our current mindset and habits, and can set us up for our happiest, healthiest year yet!


Dear readers: This article was submitted by a wonderful guest author. I’d like to send out a great big thank you for the insightful and informative article that was shared with my readers.


How to do Sleep Yoga for Deeper Sleep and Help Insomnia

Did you know that 7%-19% of US adults aren’t getting enough sleep? Why is sleep so important? People who don’t get enough sleep are at higher risk for chronic diseases such as high blood pressure and diabetes, as well as a weakened immune system. Lack of sleep can also cause moodiness, clumsiness and lack of concentration. (3)

I’ve been having a lot of trouble sleeping lately, so I’ve done some research on tips to help combat this insomnia rut in which I seem to be stuck. Sleep yoga or bedtime yoga was one of the things that kept popping up. I decided to write an article to share with all of you and have included 3 short sleep yoga routines below.

Believe it or not, there are studies linking yoga with improved sleep, Researchers at Harvard Medical School conducted research on “how daily yoga might affect sleep for people with insomnia” and twenty people finished this small 8 week study, The subjects kept a sleep diary for 2 weeks prior to the study as well as throughout the course of the 8 weeks. At the beginning of the study, they were given basic yoga training and asked to maintain daily yoga for 8 weeks, while keeping a sleep diary. “They kept a record the amount of time spent asleep, number of times they awakened during the night, and the duration of time spent sleeping between periods of waking, in addition to other details about nightly sleep amounts and sleep quality.”(2) 

The researchers found improvements in several areas (2):

  • Sleep efficiency
  • Total sleep time
  • Total wake time
  •  The amount of time it takes to fall asleep
  • Wake time after sleep onset

For yoga to benefit your sleep, however, it must be the right kind of yoga. So here are a few tips to get you started (1):

  1. Choose the right style. Some types of yoga, such as vinyasa yoga, or flow yoga are designed to energize and get the blood flowing. Better choices are “hatha yoga, which focuses on body position, or nidra yoga, which focuses on breathing and restorative poses“.
  2. Set the scene in a proper location, other than the bedroom. Experts say that the bedroom should only be used for sleep and sex, so when doing sleep yoga, find a location in your home where you can stretch out, in a carpeted room or on a yoga mat. Play some relaxing music; light some candles; get some pillows.
  3. Focus on your breathing. The breath is one of the most important aspects of yoga. Your aim is to be in the here and now, allowing your thoughts to float away. If you find your mind wondering, don’t berate yourself, just let them float in and out of your mind, then refocus on the present moment. With practice, this will get easier.

Now that you know it works and a few tips, here are 3 short routines to get you started.

Tara Stiles:

Treat Insomnia with Yoga

Yoga For Sleep

Easy Bedtime Yoga

5 Minute Miracle

7 Minute Bedtime Yoga –

Yoga With Adrien

Closing thoughts:

I’ve been wanting to include more yoga in my daily routine anyway, so this seems to be the answer for which I’ve been searching. I’ll be setting a few goals and keep you up to date in my Fit by 50 journal, which comes out every Thursday.

Until next time…namaste my friends.

Tamara

Sources

  1. https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/health/healthy-sleep/sleep-better/yoga-for-sleep
  2. https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/sleep-newzzz/201210/yoga-can-help-insomnia
  3. https://bestinyoga.com/does-yoga-help-you-sleep/

An Archive of Meditations – The Purple Almond Year in Review

Since it’s a federal holiday here in the USA, I decided to take the day off from both blogging and school. I still wanted to posts something, so it’s a repost day here at The Purple Almond.

Here is a repost of my Meditation Monday year end review from December. I couldn’t decide which article to repost today, so I decided to post this one, which posts all of them, up until December. Do you have a favorite? For me, it’s the grounding meditations as well as the walking and EFT tapping.

ENJOY!


I began my Meditation Monday blog series on December 19, 2016. One year on, I have covered the gambit of meditation and relaxation techniques. I began with Yoga, and have included everything from Qi Gong to chair yoga and candle gazing to stone stacking. Whether you’re a fitness fanatic, or hate to exercise (like me!) there’s something for everyone.

Many of you may wonder why I focus so heavily on meditation and motivation, despite being a nutrition site. As someone who is studying holistic nutrition, I learned early on that food is only part of the equation when it comes to complete, whole body health. A body under constant stress is an unhealthy body, even if you eat in a super healthy way. Yes, all of that healthy food does help, but the stress still takes a toll on you. That’s why I include so many meditation and motivational posts on my blog.

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In fact, I feel that dealing with stress is so important, my very first blog post, from over a year ago, was devoted to dealing with anger:

Do You Hold Onto Your Anger?

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Here are just a few physical effects stress has on your body:

  • Acne and other skin problems
  • Increased blood pressure
  • Increased heart rate
  • High cholesterol
  • Increased risk for a heart attack
  • Lower bone
  • Joint pain
  • Acid reflux
  • Diabetes
  • Irritable bowel
  • Lower sex drive
  • Comprised immune system

So below is a list of 23 of my Meditation Monday posts from this past year, beginning with my first YOGA post, from December 19, 2016. I hope you can find something on this list to help you relieve stress over this holiday season, and through out the new year.

The Benefits of Yoga with 30 Minute Restorative Yoga and Meditation video

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NEW YOU –

Letting Go Of Yesterday Guided Meditation

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Qi Gong –

7 minutes of Magic for Health

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Guide to walking Meditation

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Simple Meditation led by Jeffrey Zlotnik – Founder of The Meditation Initiative

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Meditation for Beginners:

The Ultimate Guide 

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The Butterfly – Kids Meditation

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40 Ways to Relax

in 5 Minutes or Less

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6 Guided Meditation Videos

for Anxiety and Fear

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A Mindful Eating Meditation

to Manage Food Cravings

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Stone Stacking

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Grounding Meditation (AKA: Earthing) with Free Guidebook

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Tapping-The Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT)

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EFT Tapping for Self-Love

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Candle Gazing

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Deepak Chopra’s Top 8 Meditation Tips

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Partner Yoga for Relaxation

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Guided Imagery

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Foot Soaking Meditation

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Yoga for Mental Health

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20-Minute HIIT Yoga Flow for Stress

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Chair Yoga

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A Quick Guide to Yin Yoga

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30 Second Videos: Qi Gong for Stress Relief

Here is a short video which demonstrates a simple Qi Gong move to help relieve stress.

And, I mean, come on, let’s be honest, who doesn’t need a bit of stress relief these days?

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20-Minute HIIT Yoga Flow for Stress | Shape Magazine

Good morning everyone. I originally posted this article in December, 2016. I decided to repost it after another wonderful article was brought to my attention.

BestForTheKids is a site dedicated to finding the best products for children. On their blog, they’ve included an article about Yoga for Children. We all know that Yoga is a wonderful way to exercise, strengthen muscles, gain flexibility and unwind after a long day, but, have you thought about asking your kids to join in with you?

Sandra Cobain, a Child Psychologist and head of content for BestForTheKids has written an article highlighting 10 Proven Benefits of Yoga for your Kids. If you’re interested in learning more about Yoga for kids, this article is a good place to start, with well researched facts and sources.

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FOR SANDRA’S ARTICLE FOLLOW THIS LINK: 10 Proven Benefits for your Kids – Best For The Kids

Now onto the main article. If you’d rather skip to the 20 minute routine, CLICK HERE.


Here is the original article (With a link to dozens more benefits of yoga):

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38 ways yoga improves your health

Yoga is an awesome and relaxing way to de-stress,  detoxify and get in shape. According to the Yoga Journal, not only does yoga improve flexibility, strengthen muscles, and improve posture, it also:

  • drains lymphs
  • boosts immunity
  • lowers blood pressure
  • regulates the adrenal glands
  • lowers blood sugar
  • maintains nervous system
  • improves lung function
  • eases pain
  • keeps allergies and viruses away.
  • supports connective tissue

For more information on the benefits of yoga, read about the 38 Health Benefits of Yoga from the Yoga Journal.

Follow the link below for a 20 minute stress relieving yoga routine developed by Los Angeles based, private yoga instructor, Alexis Novak.

Source: 20-Minute HIIT Yoga Flow for Stress | Shape Magazine