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Breathe!



When stress gets to us or even as we simply have body aches from working too hard, we need to find a way to relax. Relaxation sounds like an easy thing to do, but have you ever tried consciously relaxing and only minutes later you are already thinking about the bills and work—you try to relax but a little while later you whole body is tensed up again.
Meditation can help quiet your mind and get you to relax more effectively compared to just plopping your body down. Meditation is a mind discipline technique that has been practiced for thousands of years. This started out as a religious practice wherein devotees meditate in order to achieve oneness with their god, achieving spiritual enlightenment. When meditating, these people would go in a state of trance, leaving their body relaxed. In many cultures, meditation can bring about bouts of superhuman strength, allowing its students to perform tasks that seem to defy the laws of nature.

These days, meditation can be done by just about anybody and it is not strictly religious in nature anymore. Meditation is usually done to relieve stress and push away anxiety, and lessons can be sought from reading materials or in classes that dot urban environs.

When we relax, we control the body’s production of stress chemicals that can be dangerous to the health if constantly released in the body. Through relaxation, we are able to slow down our breathing, lower our blood pressure, relax our muscles and bring down the stress hormones. Some relaxation techniques that can be used include breathing techniques, visualization of peaceful and calming images and scenery, chanting and yoga. You can even combine all of these for maximum effect. The mere fact that you are concentrating on the breathing, a certain image, sounds and the body movements means that you are forcing your mind to focus on something specific and thus you are meditating.

The good thing about meditation is that you don’t need any fancy items to do it. Sure, you can enroll in an expensive class, but that is optional. It does help though that you set up a cool, quiet and relaxing personal space wherein which you will do your meditation. This could be a room which has the shutters drawn, you could put on some relaxing music such as nature sounds, light up some candles, and burn some essential oils. You could do relaxation lying down or on a seated position, whichever works better for you.

You should also be in a place that’s free of noise when you’re meditating. This environment allows you to focus more on what you’re meditating on. It would also help if you are dressed in the right clothes for the meditation, clothes that are not too restrictive. If you’re new to meditation, you can also purchase or download guided meditation recordings to help ease you into the practice.