Train your brain: special workout for the mind
It’s all a very similar process to working out, since it demands a new routine and continuous practice in order to show results.
Meditation can be considered such a practice. Through it, you exercise the mind which leads to a healthier lifestyle, just like a physical practice leads to a healthier body. But why should we focus on exercising the mind? According to Holmes Place partner Sadvydia Association, the benefits are as simple as finding happiness. That is the ultimate goal.
It’s safe to assume that we’re all familiar with that rollercoaster feeling: that one moment something was within our reach - and the next moment it isn't there anymore. When this happens, how can we achieve a more stable and secure feeling of happiness and contentment?
Before we begin exploring the matter, let’s take a moment to understand the nature of a very special tool that makes us who we are: the human mind.
Our mind - which includes our intelligence, thoughts, desires, memories and feelings - could also be perceived, for the sake of our discussion, as our brain.
Through this extraordinary instrument we are able to assess, interact and experience the world.
From watching sunsets and tasting new foods, to taking in the fresh smell of cut grass, or listening to a piece of music so good it gives us goosebumps; it is our mind and its connection with our five senses that actually allows us to enjoy the world.
The three natural states of the mind
Our search for happiness and our interactions with the external world happen all happen in the realm of a natural state of existence called the 'waking state'. We fulfil our desires and attend to our duties in our waking hours; we walk, speak, laugh, think, relax, read, write and explore our five senses at this time.
The second natural state we experience daily is 'dreamy sleep'; where we experience a type of calmness and quietness that cannot be experienced in our waking state. We disconnect our senses from the external world, engaging them only through our dreams, sinking into deep relaxation.
A third natural state which most of us experience daily (and is crucial for our health) is deep sleep. In this state our senses are almost completely at rest. A deep calmness, quietness and relaxation takes place both in the body and mind.
If we could connect electrodes to our body and mind and measure the levels of bliss, contentment and rejuvenation in all three states, it is in the deep sleep state we would see the highest readings.
But there is one more natural state which we may not be aware of.
It is the state which offers the highest form of happiness, contentment, rejuvenation and health available to the human mind and body. We’re talking, of course, about meditation - or what is often referred to as a transcendental state.
The transcendental state is inbuilt and is as natural as all other three states of existence. Yet it also requires an invitation and facilitation of the right conditions for it to appear and start taking place in the first place. These invitations can often get lost in the hectic world of modern life, so we’ve put together the best ways to make sure you reach this state.
Top tips to train your mind
- Choose a time of the day when your natural state is more inclined to find the right conditions, either at sunrise or at sunset. Preferably at both times.
- Select a quiet and secure place where distractions are at a minimum and you can completely relax.
- If you wish, decorate your chosen area with things that fill your with joy and peace. Candles, ornaments or even soothing music can all elevate your practice.
- Close your eyes and concentrate on your breathing (deep, soundless and nasal). Remove all thoughts that cross your mind without judgment.
- Stay in a comfortable position that allows you to stop focusing on how your body is, bringing that attention instead to your practice.
- Continue for as long as it feels comfortable and enjoyable. It’s all based on the individual, so find what feels good and stick with it.