April is National Stress Awareness Month, and boy, do we need it. In a recent study by the American Psychological Association, 75 percent of adults reported experiencing moderate to high levels of stress in the previous month, and nearly half reported that their stress has increased in the previous year. Yet, only half of participants said that they are doing enough to manage their stress. Meditation can help.
Scientific research has shown that meditation can improve your mood, boost your immune system, improve regulation of stress hormones, enhance your ability to empathize, calm anger and anxiety and help you cope with pain and depression.
Unfortunately, people tend to assume meditation takes a lot of time or requires a special place. You imagine meditating in a beautiful park, or when you're on vacation, or when you get home from work, when this big project is finished, when the kids grow up...or maybe when you retire. You imagine meditating anywhere but right here, in the middle of your stress, when you need it most. (When you're very stressed, even the thought "I really should meditate" can be stressful.)
So you push peacefulness farther and farther into the future and farther away from this moment, now.
But I have a somewhat unusual approach to meditation. It's called One-Moment Meditation®, and it's a form of meditation that takes, well, just a moment. Which makes it very useful and very timely.
Find out how you can start One-Moment Meditation
How the 30 Day Course Will Work:
That's why, for National Stress Awareness Month, you can find the balance you've been craving with this free 30-day course called Transform Stress in 30 Days with One-Moment Meditation.
Every day for 30 days beginning April 1, you will find a new article with a simple-to-follow advice inspired by my book One-Moment Meditation: Stillness for People on the Go, helping you to transform stress—quickly.
The structure of the course is simple. Each day, you'll find a new article on Oprah.com. Some will be very practical and some more philosophical, but each will either teach you an exercise or remind you to practice one. None of the exercises will take more than about one minute per day. I promise.
You won't need special cushions, clothing, candles or incense. The only equipment you will need is a timer. (You can use an ordinary kitchen timer, a timer on your phone, or you can download a desktop timer online.) After a week or so, you won't even need the timer—but to get started, it's essential.
I'm not against longer periods of meditation, but since developing this momentary approach, I've seen how effective it is. It helps people who want to meditate but are having trouble getting started. It helps people who have tried to meditate, but concluded that they "couldn't do it." It even helps mediators integrate meditation into their everyday lives. And, of course, it helps people who think they're too busy to meditate—even the busiest people have a moment to spare.
Over 30 days, you will learn how to meditate effectively whenever you have a "wasted" moment—stuck in traffic, waiting in line, sitting in a boring meeting. You will learn how One-Moment Meditation can help in stressful situations, with stress-related conditions (such as insomnia, overeating, anxiety and lack of focus) and with stress-related problems in your relationships.
You will also learn what a moment really means—and why so many spiritual teachers advise us to be in one. And you will learn why each moment, by its very nature, is momentous.
I am not promising that you will never get stressed again. But when you do get stressed, instead of just wishing your life were less stressful, you will at least have a good way to de-stress yourself, right where you are. You might even discover that stress is an opportunity—an opportunity to deepen your self-awareness and spiritual strength.
If you want to experience the full potential of this course, I urge you to make a commitment to do the exercises each day for the whole month.
Please consider inviting your friends, colleagues and family to do this too. Even though you might think of meditation as a solitary pursuit, something extraordinary happens when a community is involved.
So take a moment now to see if there is anyone you know who might benefit from a moment of meditation. And think of the possibilities if you could support each other in this.
When things are getting tense at work, you and your co-workers could pause together for a moment of meditation. When you are stressed at home, your children could say to you, "I think you need a moment, here."
My goal for this training is simple but ambitious: to reach everyone who could possibly be helped by it. So please know that, each time you do one of these exercises or pause for a moment to de-stress yourself, you will be part of a community of people all over the world—people who are learning to practice meditation—and learning to transform their stress, one moment at a time.
Start the 30-Day course today!
Martin Boroson is a playful, practical new voice in the next wave of meditation teachers. Author of One-Moment Meditation: Stillness for People on the Go, he lectures on the benefits of a meditative mind for decision-making and leadership. Marty studied philosophy at Yale, earned an MBA from the Yale School of Management, and is a formal student of Zen. Visit his website for One-Moment Meditation® help and resources.
Read more about Martin Boroson
Don't miss a moment! Bookmark this page and check back daily for new articles and simple-to-follow advice. (This is the syllabus page for the entire 30-day course; we will add each day as it becomes available.)
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Printed from Oprah.com on Saturday, March 15, 2014
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