It is a fact that, if you are human, at some point in your life the sh*t will hit the fan. If you’re a parent the odds are even higher. And if you’re a mother, let’s be honest, sometimes the shit will hit the fan more than once a day. #truth
While the sh*t hits the fan in our house quite regularly (I have 3 young kids after all!), something happened a few weeks ago that involved one of my children that was a little more serious. Read the whole story here.
In the lead up to this I had been practising 5 strategies to train my brain for when the sh*t hits the fan, because at some point it definitely will… and it did!
Below is one of these exercises. I encourage you to read the purpose of these exercises and how to practice them effectively by reading the introduction to this series prior to getting into the exercise.
Exercise 2: Meditate
I promise there are no lotus positions, incense or chanting out loud involved here. Meditation can look different for everyone!
How, when and where you do it, is irrelevant. All that matters is that you do some form of meditation regularly.
Because the benefits are massive, and it literally changes your brain for the better!
Which will come in handy when you are, for instance, training your brain for when the sh*t hits the fan.
And like exercise 1 (you can re-visit that exercise HERE), you can also do this exercise immediately as the stress starts (say for instance when Covid-19 hit).
I knew meditation was good for you but I didn’t realise how much it would nurture my mind and change my brain, until I researched and experienced it myself.
After I had my daughter (my third baby) I thought myself into a state of mental and physical distress. My stress-levels were through-the-roof because I let my negative mind take charge.
I needed to regain control of my mind, so I started meditating.
One of the most noticeable effects of meditation for me was:
It radically lowered my baseline (day-to-day) stress levels and anxiety.
If you imagine my baseline stress level was around 80%, you can see why it didn’t take much for me to reach 100% and completely lose it, even if the added stress was actually quite low.
Nowadays my day-to-day stress level sits somewhere between 10% and 20% – depending on how smoothly our school mornings are going. Just kidding, there are of course other normal life-factors that play a role too.
However, as you can imagine, it now takes a lot more for me to get to 100% stress, aka losing it, because I am starting at a much lower level. And let’s be honest sitting at 80% stress permanently is not a nice feeling.
Meditation has become one of my non-negotiables (like taking a shower or brushing my teeth). I do it every day, no matter what, because of the profound effects it has by changing my brain.
It’s not only stress-levels that are affected by meditation. Have a look at this list of incredible benefits of meditation that will have your brain ready in case all the sh*t hits the fan at once.
Why You Must Meditate
- Decreased levels of stress and anxiety
- Reduced cortisol (body’s main stress hormone)
- Higher brain functioning
- Increased clarity in thinking and perception
- Increased awareness, attention and focus
- Increased immune function
- Lower blood pressure and heart rate
- Lower risk of heart attack and stroke
- Experience of feeling calm, internally still and connected i.e. blissful
- Improved sleep
- Improved brain function, memory & learning
- Greater sense of clarity and productivity
- Feeling kinder and more compassionate
- Reduced depression
- Reduced feelings of loneliness
- Better decision making
- Better willpower
- Increased grey matter in important brain regions
That’s because meditation literally changes your brain!
Remember the “use it, or lose it” principle from the intro?
The areas of the brain that are “used” in meditation are are strengthened. They grow new connections, i.e. neural pathways, in key areas. This is what trains your brain, and leads to the amazing benefits in the text box.
And if these are not already enough benefits, meditation is also neuroprotective. That means, the neurons in your brain are literally protected from things such as ageing. Honestly!
There are many different types of meditation, and essentially it doesn’t matter which one yourpractice, as long as you practice!
Below is a short video about the quick meditation I practice daily.
If you’d like to learn more, Check This Out or contact me.
Now it’s up to you!
Please try out some form of meditation this week. I promise you will not regret it.
This is exercise 2 of 5. I will share each exercise one at a time, so you have plenty of time to implement it, and start training your brain. So, be sure to check my blog regularly, or sign up to get priority access.