Mindfulness + Meditation 101 Takeaways

Breath Awareness – 5 Minutes

The simple act of breathing in and out of our nose accesses the parasympathetic nervous system, which automatically calms and relaxes us. Paying attention to our breath is a simple way to connect to your present moment and become more self-aware and more mindful. The best part? You can practice breath awareness anywhere. Take note if you find yourself practicing this meditation at other points in the day.

Heart-Centered Awareness – 5 Minutes

When you pay attention to your heartbeat or the area behind your breastbone, you enliven its qualities of compassion, gratitude and inclusiveness. The heart sends signals to the brain that change the entire nervous system, reducing stress hormones, enhancing your immune system, and increasing anti-aging hormones. As we tap into our heart center, we experience more lightheartedness and present-moment awareness in our day-to-day.

Body Awareness – 10 Minutes

Focusing our attention on physical sensations helps to relieve stress by shifting our attention to the present moment. If your attention drifts (and it will!), simply bring yourself back to the physical sensations. As you explore the physical sensations as they come and go, you become a witness to your body and breath, and this helps you develop present-moment awareness.

Breath + Body + Heart + Mantra Awareness – 20 Minutes

A full guided meditation utilizing a variety of techniques including mantra. Mantra in Sanskrit means a tool to train the brain. It is an effective tool that requires only a gentle repetition and can be especially effective for those of us who have type “A” tendencies. Repeating any phrase over and over again (aloud or silently) can settle down the nervous system and create new neural pathways.