How To Find Zen – The Importance Of Your Physical Well-being
Key Take Aways
- Physical activity of any amount or type helps to get into Zen.
- Swimming is a great way to get into Zen and let the stresses of the day float away
- A cold bath is a great way to calm yourself down while still providing a boost of energy
- Sensory deprivation tanks can act like a reset, but do some research to make sure they are right for you.
In our first article we talked about the acts of self care in your daily life that can help lead to a more Zen attitude. (If you haven’t checked it out, you can find it HERE) From having a solid morning routine to embracing hobbies, we discussed all the ways taking care of ones mental health can lead to an improvement in attitude. In this article we discuss how taking of one’s physical health can also lead to a more peaceful state of mind
Any Amount Will Help
Everyone says exercise is key. Truly, it is. Exercise can help sharpen the mind, increase focus and lead to a higher production of serotonin. But when it comes to exercise not every form is good for every person. It’s always better to start slow and steady as opposed to rushing into a routine and overwhelming yourself. Start slow with short walks or following along with short exercise videos on youtube. I can’t emphasis enough, the idea is not to wear yourself out right off the bat, it is to get your blood pumping to help clear your mind. This is a great way to feel accomplished over completing goals related to self betterment. Once you can reliably start the path to bettering oneself, a mental feeling of Zen and peace is sure to follow. Using your bullet journal to help create and track fitness goals is also a great way to create a positive feedback loop. (Check out this article all about habit trackers) You are seeing your progress in real time and creating a system in which you can hold yourself accountable.
Another great way to get the body moving is yoga. Since yoga is strongly associated with a sense of peace, it is the perfect form of exercise to start your journey with. Though like every other form of exercise, you must ensure you don’t overwork yourself. Stick to novice moves, and in the beginning focus on the poses that bring forth a sense of peace. A good tip is to work in breathing exercises while you try new and potentially more intense poses.
My favorite way to exercise that brings me peace of mind is swimming. You can always find a local YMCA or gym that has an indoor pool and hit the lanes. Swimming is considered by many to be the best form of exercise, especially for those with joint pain like myself. When you swim really the only two things you can focus on is the type of stroke you are currently practicing and your breathing. All thoughts are cleared from your mind. After achieving a particularly long practice, the sense of achievement is a massive boost for the ego, and can go a long way towards feeling positive and peaceful about oneself.
Some other things you can look into to help promote inner peace are cold dunk tubs and sensory deprivation tanks. These may be difficult to locate depending on your location but on the chance you can find one, these are shown to chemically boost positive thought in the brain. For cold dunk tanks you can always create one at home by pouring ice into a bathtub. The ideal temperature will be 50 degrees. Your body will scream at you to get immediately out of the tub, but provided you take slow deep breaths you can conquer this feeling. If these seems to jaroing for you, then start out with finishing a shower on cold and work your way up to getting into a tank. Directly afterwards you will receive a boost of energy better than any cup of coffee you can find. Cold dunk baths are also especially effective after engaging in some other forms of exercise.
When it comes to sensory deprivation tanks, they can be a truly terrifying experience, but users swear by their therapeutic effects. As the name suggests you are deprived of all senses which just leaves you and your thoughts. This gives the user an intensely spiritual experience where they can think about their life, their goals and ways to create a positive and peaceful sense of being. For those truly stuck in a rut it is a must have experience.
So when it comes to engaging in physical activities one must always remember that slow and steady wins the race. That when you take things one step at a time, it helps foster a feeling of victory much more effectively than taking on too much and failing. Also, most importantly you must experiment with all the different forms of exercise and activity in order to find that right combination that gives you joy, the feeling of accomplishment, and the feeling of peace you seek.
Remember to use your bullet journal to log your thoughts so its easier to see the bigger picture of what works for you and what doesn’t. If you don’t have one, head over HERE to see the list of some of my favorite items in order to complete your bujo set up.
This article is part of a two part series about getting into Zen and was writing for the reader who is exploring the mindset of getting more into it via physical activity. If you missed the first part of Zen and mindfulness please check it out HERE. If there is anything you want us to dig deeper into or share your experiences with the community please comment below.
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