Give your creative mind a boost.

Doing Something Creative Can Boost Your Well-Being
By Jill Suttie
Dear Mindful Readers,

We often prioritize work over play, toiling away at a desk or whiteboard, waiting for that spark of inspiration on a big project, or how to forge ahead on a problem — but it’s those moments when we’re singing in the shower that everything can come together and that big idea dawns on us. Research suggests that moments of creativity bolster our well-being — learning a dance move or trying a new pottery class might be fun ways to fill our calendars, but it also generates energy and enthusiasm that we can bring into the rest of our week.

Here are three simple ways to practice mindfulness while engaging your creative side.

1) Sing like no one can hear you. If you’re the kind of person who cranks the tunes on the drive to work, you could be onto something. Singing is a gesture of self-compassion, and it can prime the brain for meditation. Here are four reasons to try mindful singing, and reap the full benefits of your next karaoke night.

2) Embrace your inner Shakespeare. We’re all writers — our fingers constantly tapping out texts and sending emails. We can redirect some of that energy into a freestyle mindfulness practice: try this five-step writing practice to acknowledge your emotions with each sentence you pen.

3) Be your own muse. Waiting for inspiration to strike before embarking on a special project? There are many paths to creative epiphanies. Explore these five rituals from successful artists like Stephen King and Maya Angelou to spark your imagination and find a routine that works for you.

Here’s hoping you all find moments to enjoy being mindful this week.

Yours,
The Mindful Editors

 

https://mailchi.mp/77b3013cc18c/give-your-creative-mind-a-boost?e=2fee031c35

 

Addicted to your phone? Three ways to break free, even whilst it is in your hand

Dear Mindful Readers,

Our phones keep us connected — but if we stay plugged into apps and social media, and snap selfies of everything we’re doing, our phones can become a powerful tool for avoidance and distraction.

Explore these simple ways to make the time you spend on your phone more mindful.

1) Re-organize your home screen

Beeps and buzzes from the various apps on your phone can interrupt unnecessarily — do you really need an alert when a new podcast you subscribe becomes available?

Often, people respond to notifications or click on their favorite app on autopilot. Here are five simple ways to cultivate a less distracting relationship to your phone.

2) Cut down on mindless scrolling

Social media has a way of overloading your emotions by constantly feeding you photos and stories that align with your interests in order to keep your eyeballs on the screen.

Friends’ posts can inspire joy, sorrow, envy, or all three—often in a matter of minutes.

Noticing these emotions as you experience them can help you recognize your expectations and intentions when sharing on social media. Explore this social media practice before, during, and after you’ve logged in.

3) Focus on friendships, not followers

Your phone helps you keep in touch with those who are far away, but it can distract you from the friends you see daily, and even pleasant chats with a barista or cashier.

Small changes, like putting your phone down when you’re with other people, can help you strengthen old connections and foster new ones.

Strike a balance between online and in-person relationships with these six tips.

Here is hoping you all find moments to enjoy being mindful this week.

Yours,
The Mindful Editors

https://mailchi.mp/ac4231af2ea7/set-boundaries-with-your-phone?e=2fee031c35

 

How To Tame Your Wandering Mind

Amishi Jha studies how we pay attention

the process by which our brain decides what is

important out of the constant stream of information it

receives.

Both external distractions (like stress)

and internal ones (like mind-wandering)

diminish our attention power,

Jha says — but some simple techniques can boost it.

Pay attention to your attention.


Nine Attitudes to Enhance Mindfulness Experiences

9 Attitudes To Deepen Your Mindfulness

by Chad Foreman

These 9 attitudes that help deepen your mindfulness come from the secular guru of modern mindfulness Jon Kabit Zinn.

Jon has been tirelessly working to bring mindfulness into the arena of medicine and healing and the popularity, research and

huge movement that mindfulness has become is largely due to his efforts.

Jon created MBSR or Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction and it has spawned a whole new era of psychotherapy and mindfulness based health interventions.

Mindfulness has many scientifically proven health benefits including improved physical, mental and emotional health.

It is actually a holistic type of therapy and in my opinion essential for sanity and intelligence.

Jon’s definition of mindfulness is the current most popular working definition used by health professionals and mindfulness teachers.

It is the ongoing moment to moment awareness that arises when observing the present non-judgmentally.

 

http://www.thewayofmeditation.com.au/blog/9-attitudes-deepen-mindfulness/

NeuroPlasticTools. What Would Water Do?

Thursday 1st March

Dr Jonathan D Moch

How do we find fulfillment in a world that is constantly changing?

Raymond Tang struggled with this question until he came across the ancient Chinese philosophy of the Tao Te Ching.

In it, he found a passage comparing goodness to water, an idea he is now applying to his everyday life.

In this charming talk, he shares three lessons he’s learned so far from the philosophy of water.

Humility, Harmony, Openness

What would water do? Tang asks.

This simple and powerful question …

has changed my life for the better.

https://ted.com/talks/raymond_tang_be_humble_and_other_lessons_from_the_philosophy_of_water?utm_source=tedcomshare&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=tedspread

NeuroPlasticTools. The Five Blue Zones in the World, Where Residents Forget to Die!

Thursday 22nd February.

Dr Jonathan D Moch

Global life expectancy averages out to 71.4 years.

That means, of course, that some parts of the world see much shorter life spans, while others enjoy far greater longevity.

Five places, in particular, fall into the latter category.

They are known as Blue Zones—named for the blue circles researchers drew to identify the first one on a map—and they are home to some of the oldest and healthiest people in the world.

Dan Buettner, author of The Blue Zones and The Blue Zones Solution, told TIME why residents of these places live so long—and how you can steal their habits.

http://time.com/5160475/blue-zones-healthy-long-lives/?utm_source=Blue+Zones+Newsletter&utm_campaign=958168ef32-Wine%26AWalk_2018_02_21&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_9642311849-958168ef32-199156613&mc_cid=958168ef32&mc_eid=8686361149

 

 

NeuroPlasticTools. From the Blue Zone Project

Thursday 8th February

Dr Jonathan D Moch

Reverse Engineering Longevity
By Dan Buettner

Life expectancy of an American born today averages 78.2 years.

But this year, over 70,000 Americans have reached their 100th birthday.

What are they doing that the average American is not (or will not?)

To answer the question, we teamed up with National Geographic to find the world longest-lived people and study them.

We knew most of the answers lied within their lifestyle and environment (The Danish Twin Study established that only about 20% of how long the average person lives is determined by genes.).

Then we worked with a team of demographers to find pockets of people around the world with the highest life expectancy, or with the highest proportions of people who reach age 100.

We found five places that met our criteria.

Barbagia region of Sardinia – Mountainous highlands of inner Sardinia with the world’s highest concentration of male centenarians.

Ikaria, Greece – Aegean Island with one of the world’s lowest rates of middle age mortality and the lowest rates of dementia.

Nicoya Peninsula, Costa Rica – World’s lowest rates of middle age mortality, second highest concentration of male centenarians.

Seventh Day Adventists – Highest concentration is around Loma Linda, California.

They live 10 years longer than their North American counterparts.

Okinawa, Japan – Females over 70 are the longest-lived population in the world.

 

https://bluezones.com/2016/11/power-9/

NeuroPlasticTools. 3 Minute Mindfulness Space

Thursday 1st February

Dr Jonathan D Moch

Jon Kabat-Zinn (born Jon Kabat, June 5, 1944) is an American Professor of Medicine Emeritus and a creator of the Stress Reduction Clinic and the Center for Mindfulness in Medicine, Health Care, and Society at the University of Massachusetts Medical School.

He teaches mindfulness, which he says can help people cope with stress, anxiety, pain, and illness.

The stress reduction program created by Kabat-Zinn, mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR), is offered by medical centers, hospitals, and health maintenance organizations.