Thursday, April 28, 2016

5 Minute Mind Body Exercises

So, going back to yesterday's post, we are all too busy to take care of our mind body connection, right?  Wrong!  After all, it doesn't take hours or full days.  You can do so much in just a few minutes.  In fact, if you gave yourself 5 minutes, you could do a lot!

Are you with me?  Can you take 5 minutes out of the 1440 minutes you have in a day?

Here's some things you can do in those 5 minutes that will help your own mind body connection.  No, they aren't a replacement for more involved stuff, but these little 5 minute exercises will at least help.  Once you start to see the difference, then you can move on to the big stuff.

Mind Body Exercises in 5 Minutes

Exercise #1 - Breathing

Where ever you are at, (even if standing in a long line or sitting at your desk), take a few minutes to just focus on your breathing.  You're not trying to breathe a certain way or do deep breathing.  You are just noticing your breath - the rise and fall, the deepness or shallowness and the speed and duration.  You're just observing and being at one with your breath.  You can leave your eyes open and focus on something peaceful or you can quietly shut your eyes.

Exercise #2 - Walking Outdoors

Take a few minutes throughout your day and just walk outside.  Walk out and feel the sun on your face and your body.  Notice the warmth and see how that makes you feel.  How does the sun feel upon your body?  Is it warm?  Is it uncomfortable?  What happens if you find a shady spot and go from the sun to the shade?  How does that make you feel?  Notice what it does to your mood, your emotions, and your stress in that moment.

Exercise #3 -Easy Stretches

Have you ever watched a cat get up from a nap and they do a few little stretches?  It really is that easy.  You don't have to get on the floor and do yoga posses or stretches that you would do before a workout.  I'm talking, light gentle stretches to the ceiling or a gentle twist turning with your back.  Make sure you don't overstep the bounds here and stretch to hard that you injure yourself and by all means, only do some of these things if you're not restricted by your doctor.  It could be a shrug of your shoulders up into tension and then let them drop down.  It could be a stretch of your legs from your office chair.  It could even be an easy walk to the restroom and back or outside for exercise #2.  Whatever the form may be, connect with it and try to feel it.  It isn't a race or marathon.  It isn't a strenuous workout.  It is something that is simple and connected.

Exercise #4 - Being With Your Body

What if you just sat there and thought of how your arm felt if you let it hang down to the floor?  Maybe you could just notice how you felt with your arms folded and then unfolded.  You might stop and think of how your neck and head rest comfortably on your spine as if it were a flag waving in the breeze and balanced steadily on a flag pole.  Find some way to just notice a body part and see how it feels.  See how you could move it to make it feel different.  Sometimes taking a body part into tension and then backing it off in to comfort can dramatically change how we feel.  It is the true mind body connection.

Exercise #5 - The Big Sigh

Have you ever had one of those days when you are just dealing with so much and at some moment, you let out a big sigh. Why not take a deep breath and then as you let it out, you just let the big sigh come out.  Let it come out forcefully in the beginning if you need to, but then do it again where you let it come out as gently as you can.  Most likely you will see how this lets go of so much tension and stuff that you are carrying.  Notice the tension as well as the feel of relaxing because the difference of those two things is where the mind body connection is located.

So...... Pick One!

Pick one of these and try it.  If it doesn't work, pick another.  If that doesn't work, change it up and make it work for you.  We're all different creatures and what works for one person, may not work for someone else.

The important thing that matters is that you choose to do things that will help your mind and body, not claim you have no time.  We all have 1440 minutes in a day and it depends on us what we choose to do with those minutes.  We can use them for our own good or we can waste them and they pay with our lives later.

Get rid of the tension and stress in your body!  Enjoy these exercises.

Feel free to leave a comment and let me know which one worked for you.

Blog Post And Images (c) 2016 by Don Shetterly
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