Your mind and body are interconnected. When your mind isn’t in a good place, your body usually isn’t either, and vice versa. So, it’s no wonder people are dedicated to nurturing and growing their minds and bodies simultaneously.
There are many benefits of establishing a mind-body practice. It can help you alleviate stress more easily, give you a healthier foundation to overcome challenges, and achieve a more positive, balanced, meaningful life.
Why a Mind-Body Practice is Helpful for Well-Being
When your mental or physical well-being is taken care of, other aspects of your well-being will improve as a result, leading to internal and external peace. Mind-body practices can boost your energy and mood, and help you find more happiness and peace in life.
Those living with depression, anxiety, stress, chronic pain, long-term illnesses, or other mental health and physical conditions can benefit from mind-body practices because they help soothe symptoms and improve holistic health.
Mind-body practices can also be helpful when treating addiction. Recovery requires focusing on healing one’s physical dependence and the emotional and mental triggers that drive someone to become an addict.
Meditation, massage therapy, acupuncture, tai-chi, yoga, and other mind-body practices can induce relaxation, emotional maturity, and better internal dialogue. This can potentially reduce withdrawal symptoms, drug and alcohol cravings, and the chance of relapse.
That being said, achieving a regular mind-body practice can often be difficult, especially with so many practices to choose from.
How To Determine the Best Mind-Body Practices for You
However, not all mind-body practices are created equal. You may find that some are better than others, especially if you’re trying to find one that caters to your health needs and desires.
Determining the best mind-body practices for you starts with educating yourself on what’s available and how those practices are supposed to improve your mind, body, and life overall. Take some time to research mind-body practices and engage with people that have implemented them in their lives to learn even more about where a mind-body practice can take you.
Here are a couple of other tips for determining the best mind-body practices for you:
What are your personal goals and challenges?
When choosing the best mind-body practices for you, rely on your personal goals and challenges.
What do you want to achieve personally and professionally? What does the best version of yourself look like? What would give you purpose, passion, and meaning in life?
Also, be honest with yourself about the challenges you’re facing right now and the ones you may face in the future.
Then, with your personal goals and challenges in mind, explore which mind-body practices can help you achieve the physical, emotional, and mental state that allows you to conquer those challenges and achieve those dreams.
If this step is too difficult for you, you can also seek out professional advice.
Consult your healthcare team
Often, your healthcare team can point you in the right direction when it comes to establishing a mind-body practice in your life that will boost your well-being.
You want to ensure that any healthcare professional you work with is adept at factoring in your background, culture, beliefs, and spiritual preferences when looking at options for bettering your holistic health. Culture and background influence the type of treatment one gets and needs. So, the more your healthcare providers know about you, the better they can assist you when determining the best mind-body practices for your needs.
After you determine the best mind-body practices for you, it’s time to implement them in your daily life.
How To Implement a Mind-Body Practice in Your Life
Beyond choosing a mind-body practice that fits your needs, you also need to make sure it’s a practice that you can sustainably implement in your everyday life.
This requires commitment. If you need motivation, find a way to remind yourself of the “why” behind your practice. What is your purpose behind these practices? Let this regular reminder drive your action.
However, motivation can be a tricky subject. Luckily, there are plenty of other ways you that can easily make a mind-practice easier to adjust to.
Don’t feel like you have to do everything today. Implementing a mind-body practice into your daily life takes time. So, starting small is okay and preferable.
How do you start small? Don’t overload yourself. Pick one mind-body practice and dedicate time for it every day until it becomes engrained in your daily life — just like brushing your teeth. From there, you can decide what other practices you want to include as well.
Starting small can also involve the actual time you’re dedicating in your day to your practice(s). For instance, instead of meditating for 30 minutes right off the bat, start with a 1-minute meditation practice. Then, as you get more comfortable, increase it to two minutes and so on.
Start as small as you need to so that you’re consistent with it.
Focus on consistency
As mentioned earlier, starting small can help with consistency. But it also involves being reasonable with yourself. You’re most likely not going to be able to do yoga every day for two hours — especially on days where your schedule is busier or your body requires rest. Instead, find a practice that you’ll know you’ll stay consistent with even on the “bad days”.
Adjust your goals to something more realistic, like doing yoga once a day for five to ten minutes. It’s more doable, and you’ll likely stick with it. The longer you stick with something, the more motivated you’ll be to keep doing it.
Establishing a mind-body practice to boost well-being can strengthen the connection between your emotional, mental, and physical states. Implement the tips above to ensure mind-body practices become a permanent part of your life.