“We all want the kind of mindset that allows us to be calm while driving to work in bumper-to-bumper traffic. Or the calm that helps us to stop ruminating about the past or worrying about the future so we can sleep well at night. For many of us, the stress and anxiety we experience seems to be greater than ever before. We rarely pull away from our digital devices and we end up feeling overwhelmed and overstimulated. We’re so focused on ‘the next thing’ that we regularly miss what’s happening in front of us. We fall into bed exhausted, waiting for weekends to come around, and when they do, we spend them worrying about what we didn’t achieve or thinking about what’s next on our plate…” – Excerpt from page one of the Calm book
Ummm whoa. Does this resonate with any of you? This hits particularly close to home for me lately, as I’ve been feeling more overwhelmed and stressed than normal. More often than I’d like to admit, I’ve been waking up in the middle of the night, unable to sleep because my mind is racing at all the things to do or things I’m overwhelmed by. I’ve also caught myself getting more easily annoyed by things that shouldn’t bother me so much, things like spilling a drink or missing the bus. And I want – and need – to change, because I don’t want to live life in that way! I want to be relaxed, thinking clearly, happy, grateful, at peace.
I recently discovered Calm, an amazing meditation mobile app that provides simple, guided meditations to help you get into the practice of meditating daily and living a calm(er) life. The mobile app has guided meditations, where you select your amount of time (2 minutes, 5 minutes, 10 minutes and so on) and a situation you’re looking to get through or goal you’re looking to achieve with your meditation (like Deep Sleep, Deep Concentration, Commuting, Emergency Calm, Forgiveness, Inner Strength). Calm also has different programs like 7 Days of Calming Anxiety, 7 Days of Sleep, 7 Days of Gratitude, 7 Days of Focus, etc. if you’re looking to do a regular meditation program in one area.
So what exactly does mindfulness mean and why is being calm so important? Here’s a definition from Calm: “Mindfulness is about focusing your awareness on the present moment while calming acknowledging and accepting your feelings, thoughts and body sensations.” Mindfulness can also lower blood pressure, reduce chronic pain, improve sleep, regulate appetite, boost your immune system and more.
The Calm team also recently sent me their book, which I’m already obsessed with! The book provides an overview on meditation and the importance of being calm, as well as eight sections – nature, sleep, travel, relationships, work, children, creativity and food. Each section offers related inspiration and meditation tips and exercises you can try out. I love this part of the book sharing 25 ways to take a break (yay for digital detoxes!)
Today, Calm is celebrating their second annual “International Calm Day” where they are encouraging people everywhere to slow down, take a break from stress and distractions and indulge in a moment of calm. SIGN ME UP! I’m going to be not spending every single waking minute glued to my computer and remember to take time to myself, focusing on decreasing my stress and worry. If you’re interested in having access to all of Calm’s programs and guided meditations, you can get 25% off your yearly subscription to the Calm app by clicking here: calm.com/luckyandi.
I’m giving away one copy of the Calm book! To enter,commenting on my Instagram post about the Calm book (@luckyandi) with one way that you stay calm or peaceful (yoga, reading, meditating, praying, going on walks, whatever!). I promise, this is a book you want!
Also! If you are looking for some ongoing Calm during your workday and don’t have time for a quick meditation sess, just go to the main Calm website. You can select different relaxing and calming background sound to play – I like the Mountain Lake and Sunset Beach – while you’re working. I’m actually currently listening to Mountain Lake as I type this post!