Article: Annals of Behavioral Medicine- 2010
Authors: Branstrom, Kvillemo, Brandberg & Moskowitz
Background: Increasing recognition of mindfulness and mindfulness training as a way to decrease stress and increase psychological functioning.
Objectives: Examine the effects of mindfulness stress reduction training on perceived stress and psychological well-being.
Methods: Seventy one with previous cancer diagnosis were randomized into a control group and an intervention group that participated in an 8-week mindfulness training course.
Results: Those who participated in the intervention reported significant positive effects on perceived stress, posttraumatic avoidance symptoms, and positive states of mind.
Conclusions: Improvements in psychological well-being resulting from mindfulness stress reduction training are measurable, which is important for future research.
Custom Calm employs the same practices as researched in this and other studies. The ease of implementation into daily life makes the integration of techniques manageable, directly improving daily living.
We use the word Namaste at the end of each yoga class. It means: I acknowledge and bow to the divine within you.
In India, no matter who it is, friend or stranger, they are treated in the same manner. Acknowledging first the divine in ourselves and then to see it in others is a powerful practice.
Saki Santorelli, the director of the Stress Reduction Clinic at UMass Memorial Medical Center, says: “I believe that the active remembrance of this reality is crucial to our lives, our work, and our well-being. Our willingness to relate with another in this way is fundamentally healing.”
This way of relating comes from the heart, and it is difficult in our mind driven culture. It is a beautiful practice to relate to others in this way. It opens our hearts and we soften in a way that impacts our body, mind and spirit.
Next time you are in the presence of a family member or someone you do not know well, see if you can shift your perspective to see them in this way. Look for the divinity in them and let me know in the comments below what your experience was.
While I am a cancer survivor, I had no particular stress or pain, but I am growing older and need the strength building and flexibility that the practices provide on a regular basis.
Custom Calm yoga has been a transforming experience for me. When I first tried it, after my first lesson, I thought that the whole thing was easy but didn't make any difference. Boy, was I wrong! It is a physically easy practice, but the benefits are immense.
As a result of regular attendance at classes, I am stronger, have better balance, and am more flexible. I feel more confident that I will maintain my mobility and ability to get around easily when I practice. In addition, I've learned some stress reducing and relaxation techniques from the practice.
Now when I'm stressed, achy or just tired, I practice a few yoga moves and always feel much better. However, I continue to need the regular guidance and diversity of classes.
What you can learn from Sarah’s Experiences
Gentle yoga practices are extremely effective. With age, comes the need to empower yourself to continue to participate in an active lifestyle. There are so many techniques you can practice, and a proactive approach will enhance your overall well-being.
*Last name has been left off for anonymity.
When you are overwhelmed and stressed, you are stuck in the problem and are unable to see a way out. You procrastinate, quit or panic. This halts any positive momentum, and it is discouraging.
What can you do to shift your mindset?
Action is the key:
The next time you are in overwhelm mode, pick one very simple task that has a beginning, middle and end, and give it your complete focus.
For example, pick a small drawer and clean it. Take one folder and file it. Make one phone call.
When you finish, congratulate yourself and experience the sense of accomplishment.
Remember, keep it very simple, and the momentum will begin to build.
Try this out and let me know what task worked for you and how you felt. Did you keep it simple? If it did not work, what do you think happened? If you have any questions, please share in the comments below.