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I don't like meditation, but I do like feeling good...

'Meditation' is a very loaded concept, isn't it? Well, we LOVE that there are MANY ways to meditate so here are 3 tips we encourage: (1) Clear your mind of any 'stereotypes' about meditation and instead GET CURIOUS about what form of meditation might benefit you. No need to research it or DO anything about it yet... instead, simply get curious, open and inspired so that your brain becomes open to meditation as a possible activity that can work for you someday. (2) Try this form of meditation TODAY: Set your smartphone timer for 5 minutes. Then, close your eyes and listen to every sound inside and outside of your body. When your mind wanders (and it will, because that's what minds do!), gently bring your attention back to curiously listening for sounds. It may feel like a 'tug-of-war', but like how bringing the weight in your hand back to your shoulder in bicep curls helps get your arms strong, it's the bringing your attention back to listening that strengthens the parts of your brain responsible for generating more day-to-day moments of peace, clarity and wellness. You'll probably open your eyes and end the 'meditation' early... and guess what, that's okay! Whatever amount of meditation you can accomplish in those 5-minutes is valuable! And like bicep curls, when you keep up the exercise at least a few times/week, you'll begin to see results that feel good OUTSIDE the exercise program, too. (3) Tell us about a time when you didn't feel better DURING an activity (i.e. exercise, meditation, taking medicine), but because you did the activity, you felt better later in some other way? Meditation can be like that... We thank you for helping yourself feel better because when people help themselves feel better, it helps others feel better.

Dr. Julie Hartman is a licensed clinical psychologist and Founder of the Mindful Resource Center (MRC): She is a professional writer and speaker as well as leading and supporting programs that enhance brains and communities on topics such as Parenting Today, Communicating with Peace and Presence, Quieting the Stressed-out Mind and Raising Digitally-wise Kids.

(c) September 2014 Julie Hartman, PhD. All rights reserved.

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