[This is a sample lesson from the Mindfulness Course. Please try this lesson first and then click on the link below to find out about Free One Week Mindfulness Course or enter your email above I will let you know when the course starts.]
Stress and how meditation can help you?
Due to our life situations we all feel stressed from time to time. It is a part of our daily life. But what is stress? And how does it affect your health? If you understand this then it will be easier to know what you can do about it.
Stress is how the brain and body behave or react to a life situation. Every life situation or stressor (which causes stress) such as relationship, work, any major life changes, or traumatic events can cause stress in our life.
For example: even holiday can become stressful let’s say you’re going to the airport by taxi and the taxi breaks down in the way. Now you cannot get another taxi so easily. What happens in that situation? Immediately you feel stressed. Because you start to worry if you miss the flight and automatically a chain of worrying thoughts follow.
Stress is a killer and the greatest disease of our times. Constant stress can affect your health adversely. So it is important for you to be mindful and you need to know how you can deal with minor and major stress events. If it becomes overwhelming you should always consult your doctor.
Meditation is a great tool for combating stress. And meditation is so easy and cost free. In this part of the course we will look at few things about stress and how you can use meditation and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) as an effective tool to manage stress and anxiety.
Now you might be wondering what is CBT? CBT is a way of talking about: how you think about yourself, the world and other people. And how what you do affects your thoughts and feelings. CBT is simple and amazingly powerful. It empowers you by letting you challenge your unhelpful thoughts and opinions in a structured manner. CBT is used by top therapists and professionals around the world.
5 things you should know about stress
- Stress affects everyone.
- Not all stress is bad.
- Long-term stress can harm your health.
- There are ways to manage stress.
- If you are overwhelmed by stress seek help from your doctor.
How meditation helps you to beat stress and anxiety?
Meditation calms your mind by settling your thoughts – how? When you sit quiet and meditate long enough for twenty (20) minutes at the least thoughts gradually settle down. Look at the beautiful picture of Lake Louise; it is so calm and serene.
The water is so still that you can see the surrounding hills and trees reflecting on its calm and tranquil water. Now imagine: a huge rock comes down the hills and it falls in the lake. What’s going to happen? No brainer. There will be a huge splash and there will be lots of ripples, right!
Now the splash or ripples will gradually settle down if we wait long enough. Lake Louise will look calm and tranquil again if we wait quietly and if the water is not disturbed again by another falling rock or whatever.
Let’s compare our mind to the calm and tranquil Lake Louise
The situations (e.g. bad day at work) in our life create stressful thoughts. These thought or thoughts can be compared to the falling rock as mentioned above.
You got it!
Meditation will quieten the mind
Meditation does not let your mind to remain in stressful conditions for a long time because it breaks the stress cycle. So even if you’re going through stressful situation in your life meditation establishes calmness and tranquility. So meditation does not let things to go out of control.
Forget about how, why and all those funny things because that’s the problem! Take my good advice and learn from my experience of meditating for more than thirty (30) years. We don’t need to know how meditation works – just do it!
If you want to drive a car you learn how to drive it that’s all. You don’t learn how to become a car mechanic; same thing with meditation.
So sit quiet two times a day for at least twenty minutes (more the better) by following the easy steps I share with you in this program – you will get results guaranteed.
How CBT helps in reducing stress?
Along with meditation we will use Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) to question our unhelpful thoughts. These two are excellent tools for beating stress.
Let us look at a simple example: let’s say you went to a work colleague for help and she did not respond to you politely or was unhelpful. How would that make you feel? Immediately you might feel bad or disappointed. Then, this thought might bother you even when you come back home. Can you think about a situation like this? I bet you do!
Now CBT will help you to assess this life-situation without being judgmental. It will let you ask helpful questions such as: is the work colleague going through a difficult time in her life? Maybe that’s the reason why she behaved like that at work today. Maybe she is like that with everyone else not just me.
See this kind of systematic simple questioning of your thoughts or opinions may give you a different perspective of a life situation. This will change how you see something and that will change how you feel about something.
In the following lessons along with meditation practice we will also do CBT exercises. I will provide you with some simple worksheets to solve real life problems. How about that?
Well done you’ve completed this part of the course!
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