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Meditation improves productivity

wildmind meditation newsBeth Taylor, PayScale.com: When we think of meditation, we may think of relaxation, breathing, and emptying the mind of stressful thoughts. It may be surprising to learn that the act of quiet meditation increases mental acuity and makes us more productive at work. Instead of meditation emptying our minds, it actually helps fill them with improved concentration and creativity.

Psychology Today reports on a plethora of benefits from including meditation in your routine. Decreasing stress is one, and improving physical health is another. Some of the benefits, however, are directly related to work productivity.

Improved Attention
A study published in 2007 found that after …

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Apr 17, 2014

Is the “self” real?

portrait of beautiful man model sepia tonedIs the “Self” real? What’s the nature of the sense of being that remains when parts of the psyche fall away?

The answer depends on how you define “Self.” I use that word to refer to the central “I” that’s presumed in Western psychology and philosophy (and everyday usage) to be the owner of experiences and agent of actions, and which is defined and constituted by three attributes: unification (there’s just one “I”), permanence (the “I” stays the same, things happen to it but it doesn’t change), and independence (the “I” is just there, an innate part of the psyche, not created by anything, and fundamentally …

Try meditation for anxiety relief

wildmind meditation newsDr. Eddy Lang and Dr. Zoe Oliver, Edmonton Journal: This viable alternative approach has little downside, study shows.

Glenda is a 52-year-old woman who has recently experienced a divorce. She has not slept or eaten properly for months. In turn, her work and relationships have been affected. Her thoughts were scattered and her irritability was raising eyebrows among her co-workers.

Generally averse to taking medicines, Glenda asked her doctor if there was something “that didn’t involve a poke or a pill” that could help her better cope with her developing anxiety problem. While advertisements might have you believe that antidepressant or antianxiety drugs …

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Apr 16, 2014

Bringing accountability to your practice

The Steppe Eagle is a bird of preyI’m just getting over a bad habit relating to meditation that’s plagued me for over thirty years.

It was reading a blog post on developing good writing habits that helped me. The idea came from Brett Cooper who, like me, found that he tended to write in fits and starts, with long periods of non-writing, followed by spurts of intense production.

Two ideas came to his rescue. The first was that he realized he needed to establish “a small, non-threatening daily writing habit,” and that a goal of 100 words a day was innocuous enough to be doable.

The second idea was the realization that he …

New trend: meditation studios

wildmind meditation newsThere’s a new studio opening this week in Santa Monica where clients can come in and…sit. Unplug Meditation’s only offerings are 45-minute meditation classes, each led by an instructor who guides students through sessions as they sit on padded cushions. It’s designed to be like a cycling studio, offering nearly-identical classes on the hour, every hour, so busy adults can choose one that fits their schedule and then get on with their day.

While Unplug Meditation is unique in its meditation-only focus, yoga studios and spiritual centers in cities across the country are increasingly offering meditation classes or time slots where you can …

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Telomeres for life

wildmind meditation newsKUSA, 9News.com: Which choice are you most likely to make: you have had a stressful day, the drive home was challenging to say the least, and you aren’t craving steamed broccoli – more like an entire bag of potato chips. When you finally get home do you grab a glass of grape derived “medicine” and plop down in front of the news or take a seat on your meditation cushion and center yourself? Opting for meditation over marinating in stress hormones may help you to live longer and stronger.

The “fountain of youth” can flow when you are under the influence of meditation …

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4 ways to meditate during your day

wildmind meditation newsHerald Sun: Finding time to relax and close your eyes isn’t always possible. Fear not – you can do these four meditations anywhere, no shut-eye required.

1. In the shower: Waterfall meditation
Waterfall meditation Shinto priests use the cold crashing force of waterfalls in purification rituals. This is a far more pleasant version.

How to do it:

Adjust the water to your ideal temperature. Take a few deep breaths and set your intention to use this time to meditate. Feel the water on your head and dripping down onto your shoulders, arms, torso, legs and feet. Become mindful of the scent and texture of the …

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Apr 09, 2014

Feel Whole

midnight coniferous forest on a mountain slopeWhen I look back on mistakes I’ve made – like dumping my anger on someone, making assumptions in haste, partying too much, losing my nerve, being afraid to speak from my heart – in all cases a part of me had taken over. You know what I mean. The parts of us that have a partial view, are driven by one aim, clamp down on other parts, really want to have a particular experience or to eat/drink/smoke a particular molecule, yammer away critically, or hold onto resentments toward others.

The mega part – the big boss – is of course the inner executive, the decision-maker and driver …

The mainstreaming of mindfulness meditation

wildmind meditation newsFrances Weaver, TheWeek.com: Stressed-out Americans, from war veterans to Google workers, are embracing mindfulness meditation. Does it really work?

Why is mindfulness so popular?
It appeals to people seeking an antidote to life in work-obsessed, tech-saturated, frantically busy Western culture. There is growing scientific evidence that mindfulness meditation has genuine health benefits — and can even alter the structure of the brain, so the technique is drawing some unlikely devotees. Pentagon leaders are experimenting with mindfulness to make soldiers more resilient, while General Mills has installed a meditation room in every building of its Minneapolis campus. Even tech-obsessed Silicon Valley entrepreneurs are using …

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Mindfulness in policing

wildmind meditation newsRebecca Woolington, OregonLive.com: Since last spring, the Hillsboro Police Department has offered mindfulness-based training to build resiliency in officers.

The three, nine-week courses have cost the city about $18,000, said Hillsboro Lt. Richard Goerling, one of the program’s creators. Each round comes with a $5,800 bill for the instructor, and some officer time is included in the overall cost.

The department has tentatively budgeted $30,000 for mindfulness training next fiscal year.

About a third of the department’s officers have participated in the Mindfulness-Based Resilience Training. The course was created by Goerling; Brant Rogers, a mindfulness instructor at Yoga Hillsboro; and Michael Christopher, a psychology professor at …

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