Brought to you by Mines & Associates
December 2018

The Power of Meditation

Worry, anxiety and stress can be more than distractions. Continually replaying in your mind daily problems and fears can affect your mental and physical health.

"Meditation provides a way of quieting that chatter," says James N. Dillard, M.D., D.C., C.Ac., assistant clinical professor at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons in New York City , and author of "The Chronic Pain Solution." "By bringing your focus to your breath, a mantra or a sound, you give your mind something simple to hold on to as you gradually let go of the world."

By controlling your attention as you meditate, you begin to feel more relaxed and at peace. And this peacefulness usually lasts far beyond the meditation itself, so that when stress appears hours later, you have the psychic resources to deflect it.

Meditation allows you to become more awake and more deliberate about your actions, says the Arthritis Foundation. It teaches you how to respond rather than react to situations in your life.

Although meditation sounds simple, it takes discipline to remain still in body and mind, blocking out the world around you and quieting your thoughts, the AF says. You also need to practice at least 20 minutes a day to get the most out of your meditation.

There are a number of theories about how meditation may improve physical and mental health. One hypothesis is that it reduces activity of the sympathetic nervous system, leading to a slower heart rate, lower blood pressure, slower breathing and muscle relaxation.

Various types of meditation use different techniques. Popular forms of meditation include:

"It's important to remember there's no 'right' way to meditate," says Randy Flora, a mind-body fitness instructor at Canyon Ranch in Tucson, Ariz. "If you get frustrated with one method, or it's just not working for you, try another technique until you find one that's helpful."

Two of the most popular meditation techniques are described below. For best results, try to meditate every day for 20 to 30 minutes.

Mindfulness meditation

In mindfulnessmeditation, you focus on an awareness of the present moment, the AF says. You start with a single focal point, such as your breath, and then expand to include thoughts, emotions and sensations. Here are some tips to keep in mind when you meditate.

Relaxation response

Moving meditation

Fitting an additional 20 to 30 minutes of meditation into your already busy day may be difficult. An alternative is to try a form of exercise that combines fitness with meditation. Yoga, for instance, focuses on breathing, movement and posture to help you relax and control stress. Tai chi is a form of meditation that combines slow, gentle movements and deep breathing. Some people do a walking meditation; with this method, you slow down your walk so that you can focus on your steps and the movement of your legs and feet.

The StayWell Company, LLC © 2018

Curb Emotional Eating


Like many people, you may seek occasional solace in a bowl of ice cream or slice of pizza after a bad day. When you find yourself seeking out food to comfort you, you are eating in response to your emotions, rather than to hunger.

Read More

What to Do When the Family Feels Claustrophobic


There comes a time when even the closest families find themselves too close together. Suddenly, the house seems smaller; the kids are whiny, fighting with each other or acting up in other ways. Worse, you are ready to burst and it becomes clear that your usually peaceful, friendly household is full of people who wish they were anyplace but there -- including yourself.

Read More

For more great resources, visit Mines & Associates.