Why Choose Meditation

With the turn of the New Year everyone has his or her new resolutions and goals. Most people aim to lose weight, eat better, or workout everyday. The truth is though, if this isn’t something you normally already do, keeping those resolutions can be extremely difficult. Aiming for small changes may not seem like a huge resolution, but it can be potentially more beneficial in the long run if you actually keep to it. Something that gets overlooked a lot is the power of meditation.

Pic for Blog-Why Choose MeditationThe definition of meditation from the Webster Dictionary is, “To spend time in quiet thought for religious purposes or relaxation.” This may not seem like a hard task, but with our increasingly busy lives we often forget to take time out and gather our thoughts.  Meditation not only benefits you with relaxation but there are also many health benefits that go along with regular meditation.

According to the Art of Living website, some physical benefits that meditation could bring you include; Lowering you blood pressure, reducing anxiety attacks, decreases tension pain, improves mood and behavior, improves immune system, and increases you energy levels. Considering that meditation is not a physically demanding activity, all can enjoy these benefits if they commit the time.

Along with physical benefits the Art of Living also put together a list of mental benefits that meditation offers. That list includes; decrease of anxiety, emotional stability, creativity increases, intuition developments, peace of mind, and sharpens the mind.

Along with those benefits meditation can lead you to become more self-aware and make better health choices. When you reflect on yourself everyday you can discover who you are and what your values are. One testimony that the Huffington post wrote about was a man suffering from anger issues. Through the power of meditation, he was able to recognize his anger and detach himself from it. This allowed him to clear his mind and calm himself instead of acting violent towards someone.

Meditation isn’t something that people talk about often, and even more rarely make their New Years resolution.  But, if you’re looking to make a small change with large benefits, meditation may be the perfect outlet. This is an activity that everyone can do and not feel overwhelmed with.

To set the perfect meditation mood, start with finding a quiet area. Since it is winter, indoors might be the best option for now. Draw your curtains, light some candles, and dim the lights. Setting the perfect meditation mood will make your overall experience that much better and keep you dedicated to it. Remember, for all the best benefits constant practice is necessary.

Stay Healthy. Stay Strong.

– Mary Marren

A Simple Way to a Happy & Healthy YOU

Simple Way to a happy and healthy you PhotoBy: Kenzi Weidman

Maintaining a healthy lifestyle, especially in college, can sometimes be harder than that upper level accounting class exam you have each month. With the hustle and bustle between classes, the lack of sleep from studying and the bad eating habits due to such packed schedules, students have little time to watch TV, let alone exercise. So lets face it. Those bad habits often lead not only to “freshman 15″ weight gain, stressed out behaviors, and bags under your eyes from lack of sleep, but to an unhealthy lifestyle that continues even after college is over.

You have heard it before, and I will say it again, breakfast is the most important meal of the day. When your body is sleeping, it goes into a process called ketosis, which in layman’s terms mean’s “I need energy”. A good way to start the day would be with some carbohydrates. They are your fuel and the main key to your energy levels. Try grabbing a piece of fruit, some veggies, or even a big bowl of cereal to start your day right. A vital rule to live by: In the morning, anything is better than nothing!

A typical student also needs to understand that being healthy should also mean your as close to stress-free as possible. Reducing stress will not only help battle weight gain, but it will also help you make more health-conscious decisions and ultimately lead to a happier you! So find a quiet place to lay out your “to do list” and start organizing those stressful items so you can find some time to relax.

Maybe start with sleep. What college kid actually gets the right amount of sleep, or perhaps goes to bed at the right time of night? It is very important to get enough sleep every night, especially if you have a big day ahead of you. I always wondered if their was a way to figure out the best time to sleep, other than making sure you get at least “8 hours a night”. The best time of day for naps is between 2 – 5 p.m. for about 30 minutes. Yes, that’s right, I said “NAP!” Sometimes that is just what our body needs to refuel and refocus!

Something interesting I found was the bedtime calculator at www.sleepyti.me. It allows you to type in when you need to wake up, and it will tell you the best time to fall asleep, according to the REM (rapid eye movement) cycles you have while repowering your body during the night. Sleep cycles usually last 90 minutes, and so by trying your best to fall asleep and wake up at the perfect time means you will feel less groggy and more awake when its time to get that day started. Not only will you consume less caffeine products, but it will also lead to a healthier and happier you!

Last but not least, my favorite part—the workout! It’s understandable that average college students wont work out on a daily basis. Sometimes schedules are tight, and there just isn’t time. Well if you’re like me, you make time. Working out keeps you in shape, lowers stress-levels, and also boosts your body with energy. Why wouldn’t someone want to work out every day knowing the side effects are all positive?

Try fitting in at least a 30-minutes cardio session every day to give your mind a break, and work the body…even if it is just taking a walk. Burning calories releases the bad toxins in your body leaving you refreshed, and ready to conquer. You will be fit, healthy, and happy.

Now just because you do everything mentioned doesn’t mean you will be just perfect. Every person is different. Personally, I love a hectic schedule! It makes me feel like I always have something to do, and it challenges me to get everything I want to get done for each day. Just find the routine that fits you best, and who knows, once you see how good you will start to feel, you may encourage your friends to follow these tips too! Nothing is better than having a partner in crime!

“Always remember that it doesn’t matter how slow you go, as long as you keep on going”
~Kenzi Weidman