Thursday, April 7, 2016

Meditation Options

Hey, I've given it a shot. Here and there. In very short quantities. 

But I agree with Adam Grant ("Can We End the Meditation Madness") that the trend is kinda overblown.  
The primary reason people meditate, the experts tell me, is that it may reduce stress. Fine. But so does quality sleep and exercise. And you can reduce stress simply by changing the way you think about it. When you’re feeling anxious, it’s a signal that you care about the outcome of an upcoming event — and it can motivate you to prepare. . .
In a nationally representative eight-year study, adults who reported a lot of stress in their lives were more likely to die, but only if they thought stress was harmful. Over a hundred thousand Americans may have died prematurely, “not from stress, but from the belief that stress is bad for you, ” as the health psychologist Kelly McGonigal notes.
Luke is not like me. He absolutely comes alive—alive!—when he has a deadline. He hums. He's pleasant. He loves it. 

Me? I'm not remotely that adorable if I'm bound by a deadline. But I don't have to view stress that way. I should work on that. After I've conquered all that other stuff first.

As for mindfulness, there are other ways to get there, too. 
After spending the past four decades studying mindfulness without meditation, the Harvard psychologist Ellen Langer has identified plenty of other techniques for raising our conscious awareness of the present. For example, it turns out that you can become more mindful by thinking in conditionals instead of absolutes. . . 
Change “is” to “could be,” and you become more mindful. The same is true when you look for an answer rather than the answer.
Thank goodness. Using "Liz Lemon" as my mantra was getting old. 

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