How does one create time for Hygge? I find myself constantly relating back to this question in a bid to make sure I’m doing it properly. Part of me feels that the whole notion is alien, this teamed with anxiety around change doesn’t make for a relaxing time let alone a stress free one. For me, anyway.
So how then, do we create this time, when really, it doesn’t come naturally?
There are a few key ways I have been adopting to try and enforce this more laid backed, relaxed version of me. Meditation is one of them. Before you yawn and say ‘oh here we go’, give me a second. Hear me out.
I first discovered meditation in the form of guided hypnosis many moons ago, when I was in the prime of my depression, eating issues and insomnia. This was not a fun time. And I distinctly remember shrugging off this notion of hypnosis and mediation. I mean, how could something so simple possibly help me who, believes they had a multitude of problems.
To cut a long story, very short, that guided meditation brought me out of insomnia and helped greatly with my depression and anxiety, to which, I still set time aside for it today. It wasn’t until I started sleeping better, that I sat up and took notice. Hold on a minute, I thought, something is changing here. Which was all the evidence I needed.
When we think of hypnosis, I sort of envisage a man on a stage, telling people to walk around like chickens when he claps his hands. The thing is, the real thing, is nothing like this. In fact, it’s more like a relaxed chit chat, where your brain is taken on a visual journey. You are very much conscious the whole time. And you certainly won’t be jumping around like a chicken.
Mindfulness is another wonderful practise. It works on the basis of helping your brain seperate your thoughts from your feelings. Which in turn helps us manage stressful situations better and effectively, it teaches us coping mechanisms for anxiety. There are even mindfulness colouring books which aim at quietening your anxious mind. Believe it or not, there is a colouring book to suit most interests, even the men!!
Key benefits of mediation and mindfulness are really not all that surprising, from relaxation to less stress. To having more concentration and increasing your happiness. So why then, have we not been doing this all of our lives?! It is a sure fire recipe to combat the daily struggles we face. And yet, it seems too easy. Perhaps that is the problem. Perhaps the notion is so simple and easy, the belief is, that it cannot possibly work.
I hear you, I was of this same belief system. But let me tell you. It works. It’s hard at first because you feel silly and can’t see the benefit but if you stick with it, make it a routine. I guarantee you will start to see changes that have a positive effect on your day to day.
There are a few apps that can help you train your brain into this way of thinking;
An app for daily meditation/ mindfulness. Perfect for the reluctant meditator and the ‘I’m too busy to stop’ kind of folk. The app is free, and downloadable from your App Store. You receive 10 free 10 minute sessions. Each works on the basis of doing ten minutes sessions each day, watching the illustrations whilst listening to the instructions. You won’t believe how quickly it is over with, which is why I think this is an excellent introduction to all things mindfulness and mediation. You feel the results too. Just by dedicating ten minutes each morning, it’s a bit like an exercise routine for your mind. I find, I feel a lot more together and ready to face the day ahead after my morning session.
Once you have used your ten free sessions, it gives you the option to sign up and receive weekly new sessions for a small fee. I have, however, in true tight Scottish style, rehashed the same ten over and over again. Tight arse.
For those looking to take meditation to the next level. Meditation Oasis by Mary Maddux is a full on guided meditation / hypnosis session. With espisodes ranging from fifteen minutes to almost an hour. This is far more in-depth and detailed meditation to move onto after completing the ten sessions on Headspace.
Mary Maddux Mediation Oasis can be found on the iPhone Podcast section. Simply search ‘Mediation Oasis’ and look for the logo (same as the one above). There is a guided meditation for almost everything, this will be your new best friend and secret weapon in terms of dealing with day to day stressors, which ultimately, affect your limbic system and cause us to have anxiety and stress. Some of my favourites is the energising morning meditation and the restful sleep meditation. But there is really something for everyone. And it’s free, so you can listen to your hearts content. I listen to Mary Maddux in the evenings and sometimes through earphones while I sleep.
If you have a smartphone, you will be able to secure at least one of the apps above. Give it a try. You will not know until you try, and if it can help just a little with easing your stress and anxiety for the day. And it’s free? Why wouldn’t you try it.
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