18 February 2008

How to Feel Calm in 12 Minutes

This weekend, I was giving a presentation to a group of 35 professionals who were all from widely different backgrounds, all busy and all successful in their chosen field.

Unanimously, they agreed that although they love what they do, they often feel that they could be even more effective and all expressed a desire to feel sharper, more focused and experience optimum energy even more of the time than they do presently.

Makes sense, who would argue with feeling great every single minute of the day?

I needed to know what steps they were taking to put themselves at the best possible advantage, mentally and physically. When I asked them who had a fitness routine in place, the response came from around half of them. When I asked who engaged with their food routine and thought about their eating habits, around a third of them responded positively.

When I asked who had a stress management or relaxation strategy in place, only one person put their hand up.

This came as no surprise to me.

For many of us, the emphasis of modern life is on getting more done, squeezing more out of each day, thinking, moving and living faster, faster, faster…

Even those who do try to make some space to calm themselves and nourish their body and spirit often miss the point. Was there ever such an oxymoron as taking a quick ‘power nap?’ Surely if you choose to take some time out to recharge, the most crucial factor is the quality of the experience rather than how quickly you can get it over with. You just can’t aim to relax at the same pace at which you live the rest of your life!

I’ve spoken to one of my Yogi friends, Ameet, about this situation and he recommends using an audio guide to really help you focus on your relaxation. He’s suggested a 12 minute podcast which he often uses from the website of the London Satyananda Yoga Centre. It's free to use so give it a go and see what you think. I’ve tried it a few times and each time it gets easier to clear your head and feel really refreshed in less than 15 minutes.

If you’re feeling overwhelmed by everything you have to do, it’s the perfect way to refocus your mind and get the rest of your day back on track.

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