Mindfulness. Unless you live completely off-the-grid, you have almost certainly heard of it. Maybe you are vaguely familiar with the concept, having seen it on the cover headline of Psychology Today, or maybe you are a seasoned mindfulness meditator who considers himself an expert.
Perhaps you lie somewhere in between. Whoever you are, mindfulness is inherently difficult to grasp for many, so you should feel no shame in seeking clarification. Today, we will not only define mindfulness, but discuss why mindfulness matters.
Mindfulness is far more than a fleeting fad — mindfulness offers immense value to mental health, physical health…
It’s 9:00 A.M. on a frigid Tuesday in January, the promising optimism and naiveté of a new year still hovering around me like a stratus cloud, infiltrating my workspace, my home, my state of mind.
As a mother of a 10-month-old baby girl, I am intimately familiar with the balancing act required to create flexible routines that allow me to not only accomplish a myriad of diverse tasks on a daily basis, but to do so flexibly and with ample space for modification.
Parenting is one such scenario, but there are numerous responsibilities, commitments, and lifestyles that demand a good…
Success isn’t money. Success isn’t fame. Success isn’t merely climbing the top of the corporate ladder. Or achieving “entrepreneur” status. Or even being the best at what you do.
Maybe you’re a renowned scientist. Or a heart surgeon who saves lives. Or a published author. Maybe you’re the president of a nonprofit organization dedicated to liberating young girls from illegal sex trafficking. Very impressive; few would disagree.
But what makes these individuals truly successful is not their skill, their talent, or their unbridled passion for what they do. Even passion is not enough to make you succeed. In her prominent…
Today, I’d like to write about an important, albeit overlooked behavioral habit that, when executed consistently and properly, contributes substantially to one’s productivity. Evening routines. Of course, productivity is not the sole measure of success. But there tends to be a positive correlation between the two.
In terms of increasing productivity, morning routines are seemingly all the rage these days — Get up at 5AM! Don’t hit snooze! Take a cold shower. Drink only water. Meditate. Run. Don’t wake up early! Wake up at 8AM; Obama swears by it — the advice is as diverse as it gets.
Even light physical activity will do the trick. A walk, yoga, strength training, housework, gardening, grocery shopping. Whatever you choose, physical activity has a myriad of health benefits, ranging from lower risk of cardiovascular disease to healthy BMI to improved mental health.
Besides, unless you work the night shift or are a chronic insomniac, you spent all night sleeping in an anabolic state.
Anabolism is the metabolic state characterized by constructing, or synthesizing, molecules — putting things together. Catabolism, on the other hand, breaks things apart. …
Being healthy carries with it a myriad of associated behaviors — eating leafy greens, exercising regularly, taking care of yourself, and avoiding toxic habits such as smoking, binge drinking, and abusing drugs.
But in reality, wellness is far more than that. One predominant model of wellness is comprised of 8 individual pillars — physical, emotional, social, spiritual, intellectual, occupational, financial, and environmental — each of which makes a unique, significant contribution to your overall state of health.
So how do you evaluate your wellness, and on what criteria?
In no particular order, you will address each of the eight pillars:
It might seem counterintuitive to take time away from work if your ultimate goal is to increase your productivity, but that might be exactly what you need.
As a writer, you have no doubt faced the crippling creative anguish of writer’s block. Staring blankly into the depths of an empty page, while the blink, blink, blink of the cursor mocks you, as if to say, “I have better things to be doing.”
Or, as a creative professional in a different context, you may have experienced the same phenomenon, an episode of ‘drawing a mental blank’ or experiencing a ‘brain fog’…
When I wake up at 5:00 AM, stumbling out of bed and dragging myself weakly across the room, an important stage in the circadian rhythm cycle begins. The sleep/wake cycle, as it is known in layman’s terms, determines our body’s natural hormonal fluctuations, signaling us when to fall asleep and when to wake up.
An individual’s unique circadian rhythm is governed by hormones like melatonin and chemicals like adenosine. Throughout the day, fluctuations in the levels of these chemicals occur periodically and naturally within your body. Most people know that melatonin promotes restful, deep sleep.
But many people don’t realize…
On the morning of October 17th, I awoke to the whistling gusts of wind and the frenzied storm of crunchy autumn leaves tumbling across the grass outside my window. Right beside my head, the alarm clock blared obnoxiously to announce that it was after 5AM, and therefore time to greet the day.
Although I enjoy mornings — who doesn’t love a gleaming amber sunrise and the scent of morning dew after an evening’s rain? — most mornings, I’d prefer to stay in bed. I love sleep. But that wasn’t always the case. As a child, teenager, and young adult, I…
I am not a doctor. Nor do I work in a psychiatric hospital, as a school psychologist, or in another of the myriad formal settings in which mental illness study takes place.
Rather, I identify with a different cohort. A cohort, I believe, equally qualified to offer educated perspectives on mental illness and its various treatment options. One that can be aptly categorized as those with firsthand experience with mental illness.
As someone who is diagnosed with obsessive-compulsive disorder, I tend to steer away from the term “sufferer,” although my intention is not to undermine the suffering that mental illness…