Meditation could help your stress

Mollie Moore is the opinion editor for the College Heights Herald during the spring 2016 semester.

Mollie Moore

This might make me sound like a crazy hippie, but I think my all-time favorite way to practice self care is through meditation. Practicing mindfulness is actually a great way to relax, unwind and clear your head of all your worries.

There are many proven benefits of keeping a meditation schedule. According to the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health, which is a part of the National Institute of Health, meditation can regulate emotions and relieve stress. It helps decrease anxiety and depression, and there are studies that suggest meditation is capable of increasing the brain’s ability to process information.

I’ve found that adding 10 minutes of meditation to my morning routine has been easy and super helpful. If you have time to sit around looking at your phone or look at Facebook, then you definitely have time to close your eyes and space out for a bit. It’s easiest for me to slip in my meditation time between washing my face and my cup of tea — or coffee, if I really need the caffeine.

Meditating seems really intimidating at first. Trying to clear your mind by just sitting with your eyes closed could appear to be a silly way to destress. The first time I tried to meditate, I felt a little bit like a kindergartener trying not to fall asleep during story time. I did the typical “criss-cross applesauce” pose, and after 10 minutes my legs were asleep. That’s not actually how meditation works, though.

I’m not going to try to explain it here because it would be silly, but if you’re interested in starting to meditate, there are a plethora of resources to peruse. First, you could just look up a simple guided meditation for beginners on YouTube. If you decide to dedicate yourself, then there are apps you can download to track your meditation. I’m a big fan of Breathe, which allows you to do a full body scan to fit you with the best meditation for your mood. Headspace is also wonderful because it tracks your progress and starts you off with a free program for 10 minutes a day for 10 days.

Start meditating, or at least give it a try. This activity can do a lot of good and might help clear your mind of all the stress from school.