During any particularly stressful time, especially like now, there are healthy—and simple—ways to lower your anxiety levels and reduce the intensity and duration of anxiety symptoms. When you’re in a stressful situation, you can learn how to redirect your thoughts so you can allow your body to relax and understand the mind-body connection.
By practicing relaxation techniques, the physical benefits will also include a slower heart rate, lower blood pressure, calmer breathing, increased blood flow to major muscles, and reduced muscle tension.
No, you don’t need to seek out a guru to meditate. It’s something you can easily do in a quiet place in your home for 5, 10, or even 15 minutes. Meditation is one of the best tools we have to balance our emotions, deal with physical and psychological stress, and promote a peaceful state of mind in the present moment. By meditating, you will remove stress and replace it with a dose of inner peace. While meditating on your own requires some effort, especially for beginners, guided meditations walk you through a meditation and help you find a calm and peaceful state—one step at a time.
You can find a world of free guided meditations on YouTube.com. They’re best when listened to with headphones. Here are a few no-frills meditations that, if done every day, can really help to change your perspective and calm those endless thoughts that may be bouncing around in your head like tennis shoes in a dryer.
- Back to Basics Guided Meditation: For beginners (15 minutes)
- Clear the Clutter to Calm Down: For beginners (20 minutes)
- Guided Meditation: Blissful Deep Relaxation (20 minutes)
In addition, last week (3/20/2020), meditation apps Headspace(https://www.headspace.com/)and Simple Habitopened up their memberships to non-paying customers. Simple Habit, an audio wellness app that counts 4.5 million members, has also introduced a collection of plans dedicated to the stress caused by COVID-19. Offerings include topics around self-care, mindful communication with family and easing fear, the company says.
Further, HeadSpace.com has hundreds of articles about meditation, sleeping & waking up techniques, managing stress and anxiety, and movement and healthy living. Headspace.com has 10 free, 10-minute guided meditations—offered once a day.
Hopefully meditation is something you’ll at least try. If short meditations are done daily to help calm your thoughts, it really can change your perspective and outlook on everything.
Interested in learning more about meditation? The Mayo Clinic has some in-depth information, too.
Our content is reviewed regularly and is updated when new and relevant evidence is made available. This information is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with questions regarding a medical condition.