Listen: holidays are hard. The triggers triggers this past year have been endless, too: a war, pandemic, home schooling, racial violence, isolation, storms, natural disasters, and on and on. All of this has a psychological toll on our bodies and our brains. Friends, 2022 kicked a lot of folks off the ledge, so it is 100% okay to feel however you feel right now. Whether you’re feeling angry, anxious, cagey, or just done with 2022, it’s okay.
Let’s take time to talk about ways to cope and try to get as close to “normal” as we can, whatever “normal” means.
I’m not getting all woo-woo on you. In my opinion, guided meditation is the single easiest thing we can do to self-adjust; it’s easy to do, easy to access resources (free on YouTube!), and takes as little as 5-10 minutes. We can do it in our car, on our work break, or before bed to unplug from a hectic day.
The purpose of guided meditation is to slow our minds down and relax, and it’s perfect for beginners who have never tried meditation or mindfulness. Guided meditation is a lot like listening to an audio book. A soothing voice tells us exactly what to visualize and how to wind down, and there is usually some relaxing music in the background.
Rather than pushing intrusive thoughts away, guided meditation encourages our brains to replace those thoughts with something more relaxing and to stay anchored in the present moment. Guided meditation takes the guesswork out of the mechanics; all we have to do is follow the suggestions of the soothing voice. Sometimes this is guided breathing or visualizing a relaxing setting. It’s too easy.
It’s Free and Plentiful
Guided meditation recordings used to be hard to find, but not so anymore. My go-to is YouTube: search for “guided meditation for relaxation” – or for sleep, or for anxiety, or for stress, or for anything you need in the moment. Take a look at the length of the recordings as they come up. Some are 5 minutes and some are 8 hours (to encourage sleep, for example). Give a listen to the recordings; they vary in terms of voice, music, and content. If you try one and hate it, there are dozens of others you can try. I have my favorites saved and use the YouTube app on my phone to access them wherever I roam.
Help with Sleep
For me, guided meditation has been a godsend in terms of peaceful sleep. I have a tough time winding down my brain at the end of the day and regularly use guided meditation to help me put those racing thoughts in a drawer to open again tomorrow.
In conclusion, guided meditation is too easy not to try. So give it a go and let me know what works for you.
Do you have a way to make the holidays feel less hectic? We value your feedback and ideas! Reach out on our Community Facebook Page!
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