Self-Care vs Social Media
Should it be a contest?
Over the next 7 days, I will set a little Self-Care challenge each day for those who want to take it. I know that many will say they don’t have time; well if this is the case get over and see The Time Doctor…
Those of you who read my Blogs know that even though you get a few Musings of a Vintage Diva you also get my take on Mindfulness and Self-Care. After 40 years of ‘People-Work’ I have a bit of insight into what makes them tick or explode having been both sides of the coin myself. However there is only one constant and that YOU.
Mindfulness as a Tool
If you haven’t tried Mindfulness properly then let me remind you what Jon Kabat-Zinn said, “Mindfulness is not a special state you achieve through a trick or a technique. It is a way of being.” so when you drink a cup of tea, just drink a cup of tea.
So why is Mindfulness so necessary in the 21st century? In truth I believe it helps bring balance and wellness back into lives. It aids combating tiredness and helps to increase energy levels; many students find it can also help with reducing challenges like;
- Lack of self-esteem
- Low self-confidence
- High stress levels
Several of my tribe use most of the techniques we practice find that tension in their body reduces considerably. Headaches are reduced and that they believe it aids coping with day to day lives in this busy world. Significantly it helps them to focus on the present rather than rushing furiously into the future or getting caught up in the past. They keep all these excercises and techniques in their Tookbox/Bag.
Customise your Tool Box – Bag
Undertaking practice on a regular basis can enable individuals to take further control over their lives and ultimately find time to have more FUN. In fact just 5/10 minutes essential relaxation included into your daily life will help you greatly and 5/10 minutes a day is far better that 1 hour a week. The daily habit begins to embed into the brain and becomes part of your routine – Relaxation is the first key to emotional well-being and helps reduce stress and other ailments once you can learn to relax effectively then Focused Relaxation, Mindfulness & Meditation will be the next stages.
Brain Spam/Mad Monkeys
One of the biggest distractions of learning to relax is the millions of thoughts that come hurtling through the brain. Buddhists describe the mind as: ‘the mad monkey’ and that relaxation and meditation is a way of training that monkey.
Tame the little buggers!
Because when we are at the beginning of undertaking our relaxation practice, we are leaping from one thought to another just like the monkey jumping from tree to tree with no purpose, planning, we are illogical, erratic and irrational. However, if you use the monkey as an analogy for your attention then you can begin to train your attention gently to focus on breathing, subtle feelings, symbols or images and thus cut down the times you leap from tree to tree until you become proficient in just focusing on relaxation
Lets start with DAY 1 – Practial Relaxation
PUT THE LAPTOP DOWN! Let Go of Social Media for 10 Minutes
Have a Practice this one I have used for years; similar can also be found at; Quick, on-the-spot relaxation:
- Sit up and back in your chair so that you feel firmly rooted, legs slightly apart, feet flat on the floor. back straight, this keeps you energy flowing
- While you take a deep breath, letting it out slowly and drop your shoulders. Close your eyes if it helps. Focus on your breathing. Breathe in slowly to a count of three or four – hold for a count of three – breathe for a count of three or four – pause for a count of three. Repeat at your own even, comfortable rhythm. It can help to imagine yourself relaxing more each time you breathe in and the tensions flowing away with every out breath.
- Next, slowly tense, hold, and release the main muscle groups, working up through your body. Start with toes and feet; tense as much as possible, hold and release. Move on to legs and thighs, stomach and torso, in the same way. Paying particular attention to your back and shoulders, this is where we hold a lot of tension. Then work on your fingers hands and arms.. If you are brave enough, screw up the muscles of your face and neck and slowly release.
- Return to focusing on your natural breathing and check your body for any remaining tension just like a slow bar-code machine.
- Finally, check your seating position, drop your shoulders again, and place your hands comfortably on your upper legs and concentrate on the sensation of warmth as it flows out through your hands.
Everyone is aware that research shows that most people use Social Media for a minimum of 45 minutes a day, TV much longer, are you worth just 10 minutes. Should it be a contest or should you put yourself first? #JustSayin
Check out Tiny Buddha for more Self-Care ideas
Learning to use relaxation as a Self-Care tool in this way can be invaluable if you get anxious in public places and need to sit somewhere to compose yourself . Use it at work when you feel overwhelmed, it is well worth the 5 minutes to put your pen down or leave the computer and completely erase the scrambled thoughts from your brain! (some of my tribe go off to the loo to relax for a few minutes to get away from the distractions.). Can Social Media do this for you?
Give Mindful Relaxation a go, with practice you will embed it and use it as a tool from your toolbox/bag.
Day 2 tomorrow….Watch out for it…..