With all the stress factors in life, whether it may be work, bills and prioritizing your busy schedule- It is good to block the world out and just take a chill pill. Our monotonous daily routines can get us in a mental bind that we forget the main purpose of life –LIVING.
Ever since elementary school I put a ton of pressure on myself; Who needs parents to push you when you are constantly pushing yourself to be an over achiever? Everything that I have set my mind to I always accomplished. I remember when I began working for a startup after graduating from college. For years I would barely take a day off, even if I were sick because I thought that work was my entire life. Being absent meant to me that I could be replaced and I did not want to look bad in the eyes of my superiors. That constant reassurance in my mind for job security through showing how hard I could work started dragging me to the ground and even affecting my home life. My mind would not shut off from work, this would cause me to fall asleep on the couch thirty minutes after my fiancé came home. I was burnt out over things that I cannot control.
I needed to find a way to release and live a less stressful life, because I knew that I would be heading down a path of mental breakdown mania before even reaching thirty (i.e. Britney Spears circa 2007). As time went on I found a new gig, left the startup, and then lost my job. All of my fears felt like they Spartan kicked me in the chest and I just broke down. Little did I know this minor setback was going to be the beginning of a new life and a new way of thinking.
One night, after sending numerous resumes and working on my website and YouTube, I decided that I needed to clear my head and FAST. I remember thinking back about an interview Russell Simmons did as he talked about how he meditates every day to keep a strong mind and healthy life. I decided to go in my bedroom, illuminate the room with candles with only the sounds of a meditation soundtrack of rushing water and just BREATHE. The first night that I did this, I blocked out everything (even the sounds of my fiancé playing GTA V and causing a five star SWAT chase) and felt so refreshed, even through my time of career uncertainty. I do a meditation routine nightly and this helps to close out the current day and prepare positively for the next day.
1. Find A Quiet Place
Find a place in your home where you can be uninterrupted, even if it is only for 10-15 minutes. Turn off all distractions such as your TV, radio and phone (unless you use your phone for music).
2. Use Scented Candles and Incense For A Calming Atmosphere
Meditating is all about a peaceful calm atmosphere. Scents like lavender and vanilla are commonly used to calm our bodies from stress. I personally like to mix beach and ocean inspired scents along with vanilla candles.
3. You Do Not Have To Be A Particular Religion To Meditate
Don’t think that you have to be affiliated with a religion to meditate. You can use this time to think about personal goals and daily goals. Personally, I use the time to do rhythmic breathing, pray, set goals and repeat motivational phrases as if I were my own coach. Remember, you are your biggest motivator.
The most important thing is to relax. Leave work at work! You already dedicated 40+ hours at the office; do not neglect your personal time. That was a major problem I had for years and I made a vow that I would not bring that added stress. Turn off your work phone and laptop; it CAN wait until the morning.