You’ve heard all about meditation, mindfulness, and likely, some anecdotal evidence on its benefits. Mental wellness is becoming a trend, tightly linked with self-care, extending to eating, exercise, and the wellness category as a whole.
You’ve probably also noticed that in 2019, we’re more stressed than ever. Celebrities and normal people are sharing their stories on their struggles with depression, anxiety, and other mental health issues. And maybe people are opening up in a way that’s never been so prevalent, sharing vulnerabilities through social media, and that’s why we’re just now seeing how common these afflictions really are. But experts believe that, contrary to the bad rep millennials get, the newest generation of workers might be pushing themselves the most.
Erin Griffith of the New York Times writes, “Welcome to hustle culture. It is obsessed with striving, relentlessly positive, devoid of humor, and – once you notice it – impossible to escape.” Anne Helen Petersen of Buzzfeed postulates, “All of this optimization – as children, in college, online – culminates in the dominant millennial condition, regardless of class or race or location: burnout.”
Depression is so rampant in millennials that a 2018 report by BlueCross Blue Shield revealed that diagnosis for this condition had risen by 47% in this age bracket since 2013. Products intended to help manage stress and anxiety have become increasingly popular, from CBD tinctures to healing crystals. Barnes and Noble even reported a 25% surge in sales on books about anxiety.
Stress and anxiety can be precursors to depression, serving as triggers. Meditation has been proven to be a helpful exercise to deal with those feelings. Harvard Medical published an article on meditation for depression in 2018, quoting Dr. John W. Denninger of Massachusetts Hospital as saying, “Meditation trains the brain to achieve sustained focus, and to return to that focus when negative thinking, emotions, and physical sensations intrude… When you meditate, you are better able to ignore the negative sensations of stress and anxiety, which explains, in part, why stress levels fall when you meditate.”
TRAINING YOUR BRAIN
Meditation isn’t a cure-all, but it could help manage your emotions. Like a muscle, your brain needs to be exercised and trained to help you deal with whatever life throws at you. As we like to say at Core, mindfulness starts with me.
Getting started with meditation may seem daunting, but there’s so many ways to work it into your routine. And it doesn’t have to last an hour: a minute or two each day is a great place to start. Take a moment for you – close your eyes, relax, and clear your mind. You can do this at your desk, when you wake in the morning, or even in the shower.
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