Life is all about balance—but not just work life balance. Maintaining a balance between tough days at the gym and relaxing moments during the day is key to feeling both physically and mentally in shape.
Meditation is the best way to create this balance. Just like in your workouts, the key is to choose meditations catered toward what you want to change or improve.
To do this, create mantras that focus on that one thing and repeat it continually in your mind. For example,
- I will forgive
- I feel positivity in my body
- I am
Why use a mantra? “You can use mantras to enter meditation; while in meditation to silence the mind; and while in meditation to achieve a goal. Entering meditation using a mantra helps silence the mental chatter and relaxes the brain into the alpha state,” according to OMHarmonics.com. Once you have a mantra, keep these two tips in mind to maintain balance within your mental and physical state.
Plan Both Into Your Day
Take time for activity and meditation every day. Luckily, this is much less time-consuming than you may first assume. If you already have a workout routine, build meditation into it.
Try meditating first thing in the morning, while you’re still in bed. Start slow and add more time as you practice. Just one minute of silence in the morning before you start your day can make all the difference.
Find Your Active Meditation
For some, lying still in your bedroom or a corner of the house is counter-productive—it’s impossible to stop thinking when you have laundry on the couch, dishes in the sink or a baby crying in a crib.
If it’s hard for you to sit still and quiet your mind, try moving while you do it. Here are a few ways you can meditate and move at the same time.
Yoga: The best meditation-focused classes include Jivamukti, Kali Ray TriYoga, Sivananda and hot yoga.
Running: Focus on meditation during a long, slow run. Choose a mantra to focus on for the duration of the run and work through that thought or idea, pushing any other thoughts out of your mind.
Dynamic Stretching: Dynamic stretching is often used to warm the body up for exercise, but can be used for an active rest day to move and meditate at the same time. Choose exercises that are simple, allowing you to focus on the movement you’re performing rather than a tough posture or position. Try squat jumps, leg swings, hip stretch with twist and modified pushups.