Sometimes it can feel like stressful scenarios are waiting on every corner (and in every email), and mastering a calming meditation (or two or three!) is a great way to prepare to meet them.
“Meditation allows us to respond to certain situations appropriately and consciously, using our judgment with more calm and clarity rather than reacting harshly,” says Lynne Goldberg, the founder of OMG. I Can Meditate!, a lifestyle app filled with guided meditations that address all kinds of specific life challenges.
“Additionally, meditation helps us take a step back and see the bigger picture, so we can better understand others’ perspectives and opinions,” Goldberg says.
We feel calmer already.
That sense of perspective is key, because it will allow you to deal with whatever hurdle you’re confronting so you can get back to what’s important, like enjoying time with the people you love and crushing your career goals. (There’s a reason wellness pros like Mandy Ingber and McKel Hill all seem to meditate regularly.)
Don’t worry, Goldberg is not saying you need to develop the silent focus of a monk. Spending just a couple of minutes being mindful of your breath, she promises, can work wonders.
Here we share three meditations for some of life’s biggest obstacles to healthy living—for calm, for deep sleep, and for more mindful eating.
Start with this two-minute meditation for calm that Goldberg shares with Nutritious Life.
2-Minute Calming Meditation
- Take two deep, cleansing breaths, in through the nose and out through the mouth.
- Now allow your breath to return to normal, in and out through the nose. Follow your breath with your full attention. Notice the sensation as the air touches your nostrils.
- Follow the breath for its full journey all the way from your nasal passage into your lungs and down to your belly, feeling your belly rise. And reversing that breath, feeling your belly fall as the breath leaves your body.
- Notice everything you can about each breath—the temperature of the air, how it feels at the tip of your nose and the back of your throat.
- Take 8 to 10 of these fully conscious breaths and notice the change in how you feel when you’re done.
Deep Sleep Meditation
Sometimes getting a good night’s sleep is as simple as figuring out a way to convince your mind and body to just calm down. Sleep meditations are a really good way to make that happen.
To guide you into a deep sleep, here’s one of our favorite sleep meditations from popular meditation app Headspace. It helps you turn off each part of your body in under two minutes:
Mindful Eating Meditation
When you’re eating mindlessly, or without thinking, your food choices are more likely to be emotional, and you’re more likely to overeat. In fact, there is scientific evidence that mindful eating is good for your health. One review of the research on the connection between mindful eating and weight found a strong connection between eating mindfully and losing or maintaining a healthy weight.
Nutritious Life partnered with Unplug, an L.A.-based meditation studio for busy women living modern lives, for a series on Mealtime Meditation. Unplug also has an app for sharing their marvelous meditations with the world.
Try this 15-minute meditation for mindful eating with Cassandra Bodzak to help you raise your consciousness around how, why and when you’re eating your food.
(Top Photo: Dingzeyu Li via Unsplash)