To help relieve the stress that comes with the holidays, we are sharing with you a few guided meditations that you can listen to each day until the 25th to help you develop a meditation practice.
There are four styles of meditations: Silent, mantra, guided meditation and music meditation. The list below offers you choices from guided and music meditations.
Music Sound Meditations:
(10 minutes bell music for meditation)
Relaxing Music (60 minutes)
Positive Affirmation Audio (30 Minutes)
Meditation helps with Mindfulness. We talked about Mindfulness on the blog in the following posts.
Not everyone wants to wait for the new year to get back on track with metabolic balance. If you overdid it on Thanksgiving and you want to start rebalancing, let your coach know!
Here are a six tips for rebalancing:
- Don’t tell anyone. This is the holiday season and many people will not understand why you are “sacrificing” on food. You do not need to waste energy explaining. Most people will not notice that you are not snacking or eating their holiday cookies. If they do notice, just say that you’re working on eating mindfully and change the topic to mindful living. If you need a refresher about mindful living, visit our posts about living a mindful life on metabolic balance.
- Clean out your kitchen of any foods not on your plan and donate them to a food kitchen. Do not eat them. If they belong to your family members, put them in tupperware on a lower shelf so that they are not in your face when you open the cabinet.
- Plan your menu for the next two weeks. Keep life simple. Create soups like Zucchini Basil Soup and Turkey Pho Soup or make a cauliflower pizza crust and avoid recipes with lots of ingredients or long preparation times and oil.
- Figure out how you are going to drink your water. Buy a special water bottle and a filter system if tap water doesn’t taste good to you. Do not add flavouring to your water.
- Get plenty of sleep. You are taking care of your body during a rebalancing and your body needs time to fix itself. Sleep is the time when your body builds up the immune system and gets everything back on track.
- Do you have a smartphone? Download a silly game to play when you have the urge to snack on something. There is a no snacking rule with metabolic balance but your brain does not understand this. The impulse is there and you need to work your way through it and offer yourself an alternative that is easy to implement.
A few weeks ago, we shared an infographic about mindful eating. This week, we would like you to actively work on being mindful while you eat. Look at the options below and try to do one of these each day. Write down how you feel. If you want, you can even share it with us on Facebook.
- Take the first few sips of a cup of hot tea or coffee with full attention.
- Do not eat and read at the same time. Alternate activites. Read one page and then turn away form your digital device or book and take a bite of food. When you are done chewing, turn back to the book or digital device. This will take you longer to accomplish both tasks but you will find that you remember eating our food, it won’t just disappear.
- Eat in silence for the first five minutes of your meal. It can be without purpose or you can ask everyone sitting at the table to think about the way the food ended up in front of them and the people who made your meal possible.
- Try eating one meal a week mindfully, alone and in silence. Pay attention to how this feels for you and if it changes what you decide to eat and how you eat it.
Here is a mindful eating article from the NY Times. The article delves into mindful eating and how companies like google are bringing mindful eating into the workplace.
In an article by Harvard Health Publications, the following starter tips are offered:
- Start by eating one meal a day mindfully.
- Set a timer for 20 minutes. Sit at the table for at least that time period without turning on the television or using a digital device.
- Take small bites and chew well.
- Before opening the fridge or cabinet, take a breath and ask yourself, “Am I really hungry?” Do something else, like reading or going on a short walk before going back and grabbing something to eat.
- Eat silently for five minutes, thinking about what it took to produce that meal, from the sun’s rays to the farmer to the grocer to the cook.
On Monday I gave you a recipe for grilled chickpeas. Research has shown that certain chemicals inside of chickpeas make you sleepy. Mindfulness also can help you sleep.
The American Mindfulness Research Association shared information about a recent study published in JAMA internal medicine. The sleep study focused on older adults who reported having issues falling or staying asleep. The adults were assigned to one of two groups. The first group received 12 hours of group instruction on Mindfulness Awareness Practices for Daily Living (MAP) and were given at home assignments. In their 12 hours of instruction, they were shown how to sit, walk, move, eat and meditate. The second group focused on sleep hygeine education (SHE). The participants in the second group were instructed on sleep self monitoring, relaxation techniques and sleep hygiene strategies. The study showed that participants in the MAP group had significant improvements in their sleep, less fatigue and less depression. (Mindfulness also helps people who suffer from Insomnia.)
Other Mindfulness articles that are interesting:
Mindful women less likely to be obese. I found this article very interesting. Mindfulness helped women more than men. Men tended to still be overweight even if they were mindful.
Newsweek article – personal story about mindfulness – This is a personal story about someone who attended a mindfulness retreat and how their body chemistry changed in a very short time just by learning to be mindful.