Even if things aren’t as perfect as you would like, it is important to feel satisfied that things are good enough and to appreciate all that you are and all that you have.
This is where mindfulness can come into play.
Mindfulness is a form of meditation, which seeks to develop a true appreciation of all things in your life, as opposed to wishing, and hoping things would be a certain way. You can apply mindfulness to many things in your life, but the following would be excellent ones to start on.
Be Thankful For Your Health
Good health isn’t a given right, though most people take it for granted. Though most of us are all born in very good health, it is one of those things that “you reap what you sow.”
If you had a youth rife with booze, cigarettes and junk food, your current health may reflect that. Yes, you can still take into hand your current health, and make the best of it. Appreciate the health you do have, and constantly work on it.
Be Thankful For Family And Friends
One of the things we take for granted the most is our family. Without a doubt, you did it in your youth. You may still be doing it, then stop to wonder why you feel alone or unfulfilled about your life.
Being surrounded by people you love can offer a level of satisfaction and contentment that cannot be replicated, regardless of how much you physically own. Spend time daily with your loved ones and your sense of contentment will grow when you appreciate that they are always there for you.
Be Thankful For Your Lovely Grey Tresses
Why is grey hair shunned and hidden by the masses? Too many women dye their hair, as if they are ashamed by it. Grey hair can be as sexy as you can get, why do you think so many young people are now doing the silver style?
Grey hair is a gorgeous look, as long as you manage your hair as you would when you were younger. Nobody likes stringy unkempt hair! A full head of grey hair displays a level of wisdom not possessed by others. Think of it as proof that you have learnt much over the course of your life, or as your beautiful silver crown. Take mindful pride of this, and others will see it for what it is- beauty and wisdom.
Be Thankful For Having Time
One major advantage of being a woman over 50 is having ample time. You’ve raised kids, got your house in order, and probably cleared off major debts. This leaves you a lot more free time, as you don’t have pressing need to have a full time job.
Working part time or maybe not at all gives you time to do the things you love; gardening, knitting, dancing, swimming or anything else you can think of.
Young people have to constantly trade time for money, missing out on many of the small pleasures life has to offer.
Mindfulness is easy to implement, and chances are you are already using it in some aspects of your life. The key is to be aware of and satisfied with where you are in your life, the way you are and the things you may have.
Do not dwell on negative emotions or feel less than gifted. Be contented with all you have, and you will enjoy life to the maximum!
How Meditation Slows Aging
When some people think of meditation, they think about Buddhist monks sitting in a temple chanting while attempting to achieve enlightenment.
Many people don’t consider meditation a process that they can do at home every day. However, recent science shows that meditation can be one of your best weapons against early aging.
How does meditation slow the aging process? Well to answer that, we have to get into a little science. The science of physiology, DNA, and a little thing called telomeres.
The Science of Aging
Nobel Prize winner Elizabeth Blackburn recently received her Nobel Prize in physiology by identifying a key element in the aging process. This is the DNA protective titled a telomere. They shield chromosomes every time DNA divides; they wear down every time DNA divides as well. CNN reports that the telomeres eventually break down and lose their ability to divide.
Enter Elissa Epel, who was interested in studying the effects that chronic stress has on our physiology. Epel asked for assistance from Blackburn for help on a study on the relationship between the state of mind and our body’s telomeres.
Stress and Telomere Connection
The study consisted of 58 women that were broken up into two groups. The two groups were stressed out mothers and a control group. Epel attempted to keep the biometric data of the control group and the stressed-out group as carefully as possible to get accurate results.
The results were amazing. The higher the stress levels that women felt and reported on their psychological surveys, the shorter their telomeres and the lower levels of telomerase (the enzymes that build telomeres) they had in their bodies. What it basically equated to – scientifically– was that people who had more stress in their lives were aging at almost double the rates based on their telomere test results.
Their findings were initially published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences in December 2004. While there were many people who are skeptical because of the small sample pool of research participants, the feedback in the scientific community was phenomenal.
This research could really change how people viewed aging. No longer was aging something based solely on your genetics, but your response to stress could have a direct impact on how you age.
What Does This Have To Do with Meditation?
One common recommendation for the reduction of stress is meditation. This recommendation can be given by friends, religious practitioners, physicians, and psychiatrists. Moreover, it looks like meditation is one of the most effective forms of stress reduction.
According to the Guardian of recent surveys showed that experienced Zen meditators have longer telomeres than average people of a similar age do.
According to the Guardian, many studies focus on people who have practiced Zen meditation or other meditation techniques for more than an hour a day for the past 10 or 20 years. These studies seem to show that not only are telomerase levels different but other biological factors like blood pressure and resting heart rate are also different.
Have I Waited Too Long to Start?
You might be wondering if you’re not already a practitioner of meditation if you have waited too long to begin your meditation practice to see the effects. It is never too late to start a meditation practice whether you’re 15 or 50. You will see the benefits of reduced stress not only on your mental outtake but physiologically as well.
According to Tiny Buddha, the benefits of meditation will begin from the moment you start your meditation practice. You don’t have to be a 20-year veteran of Zen meditation. You don’t even need to meditate for hours on end. Beginning with 10 minutes of simple meditation every day can help you improve your overall mental clarity and stress. From this 10-minute practice, you can begin to build up your meditation practice until you are at a more lengthy meditation time.
Meditation is for everyone, and now the science backs up the benefits that meditators have been saying for years are there. Begin a meditation practice today to see the amazing effects it will have in your life.