Tag Archives: Health and Fitness

Sleep Affects Your Health

Get Adequate Rest
Image by Phase4Photography

Sleep affects your health more than you may realize. People who are well-rested make better choices and live longer than people who go through life without enough sleep. There are times that sleep deprivation cannot be avoided, such as having a newborn in the home; but, generally speaking, there are three simple things you can do to ensure that most of the time you get enough sleep.

Incorporate the following into your lifestyle:

  1. Stop eating at night! – Do not eat anything during the three hours before your bedtime.  When you eat just before going to bed, rather than going in to a state of relaxation, your body is busy digesting food, which interferes with deep sleep. Many people say they are not hungry in the morning, which could be the result of late-night eating. If you have nothing during the three hours before sleep, there is a good chance you will be hungry and ready to “break your fast” in the morning – which is the way the body is supposed to work.
  2. Create a quiet, peaceful environment in your bedroom — Your bedroom should be your sanctuary. It should be clean, quiet, a comfortable sleeping temperature (not too hot, or too cold); and very dark. If necessary, get black out shades. Do not sleep with electronics running (radio, TV, I-Pod, etc.) This will interfere with deep restful sleep. If you have trouble falling asleep, try using a white noise machine or fan to generate white noise that will drown out other sounds so that you can sleep more soundly.
  3. Exercise daily — Whether it is a 10-minute walk after dinner, or a one-hour run in the morning, it is important to get moving a little bit every day. It is not a good idea to exercise heavily at night; but, a leisurely walk after dinner will help you sleep. The point of leisurely walking is not to burn calories but to get some fresh air and relax. If you have a partner or other family member who can join you, that is even better. A full exercise regimen is better suited for earlier in the day.

When you are continuously feeling tired and sleep-deprived, you have less willpower. You are more likely to indulge in sugary and/or caffeinated beverages; sugary, fatty snacks; and poor food choices in general. When you get enough sleep to feel well-rested, you are more likely to eat healthy, nutritious foods. Your body will function on a much higher level, repairing and healing as needed, and digesting your food efficiently, which ensures better health and a longer life.



Empowerment through Mindful Meditation

Man in business suit meditating
Image by pressmaster

Mindful meditation releases you from the noise of life and allows you to be present in the moment. It raises your awareness and brings a sense of peace and well-being. Through this form of meditation you can change your life in subtle and powerful ways.

You do not practice this type of meditation to create upheaval in your life or to make drastic changes. It is practiced to help you recognize “what is” in your life, right now, and live in the present.

It is easy to get caught up regretting what has happened in the past and worrying about what may happen in the future, and as a result,  lose the present. That is not living. It is mindlessly moving through life in limbo.

There are many “gurus” or meditation guides that can help you learn to meditate; but, I recommend Tom Cronin of The Stillness Project because his focus is on Mindful Meditation – living in the present moment. Tom Cronin is a Global Meditation Authority, Teacher, Life Mentor and Author.

Those who use Mindful Meditation on a daily basis do not hide their heads in the sand and ignore whatever is happening in their lives, they learn to love life as it is and to accept themselves as they are – warts and all.

Life happens! There are good things and bad things that happen to everyone. The peaceful moments that can be experienced through Mindful Meditation relieve you from the stress of wishing things were different. It gives you the clarity to realize that there is no need to want to be different than you are; or to live in different circumstances than those that surround you.

You cannot escape your circumstances. Yes, we all crave the “good” in life and embrace it with great joy when it happens – and are continually seeking that happiness. But . . . when the “bad” appears, we shun it, we run from it, and even pretend it isn’t happening. Unfortunately, we cannot run away from ourselves.

Mindful Meditation provides the quiet stillness in which you can look closely at what is happening in your life – right now – rather than fretting about what you wanted to happen and stewing about the life you don’t have. The stillness allows you to tap into your inner vision and through quiet observation develop a clarity that you do not normally have.

When you refuse to accept “what is” in life, and fight a constant battle in your mind about things you want to change, or would like to avoid – you cannot experience the good that surrounds you; and in fact, your inner battle makes the “bad” worse. Wasting mental and physical energy trying to escape your reality will drain you to the point of exhaustion – and changes nothing.

Through Mindful Meditation it is possible to learn to see the daily events of your life for exactly what they are . . . your life. This is the only way to gain acceptance of “what is.”

Mindful Meditation allows you to be completely present in your life – for all the moments, good and bad. It will give you the personal power to open your mind and heart to the point that you will be in control of your life – not of what happens, but how you interpret it and how you deal with it.

Tom Cronin’s Stillness Project will help you achieve this present state of mind. If you want to begin walking down a different path that is filled with peace, you can sign up to participate in an event that will join more than a million people in meditation at once.

You will feel empowered in many different areas of your life – your relationships, your health, your job, even your financial situation.

With acceptance and clarity, you will realize that there is no such thing as “good” and “bad” – there is only “What Is” and you will have the quiet strength to work with what you have.