Mindful May. Why your brain needs workouts too!!
We’re in the business of making peoples bodies healthier by encouraging fitness. Whilst exercise has numerous benefits on mental health, we can go that step further by encouraging healthy thinking as well. You can liken your brain neural pathways to muscle memory. The more you practice a certain “move” the more automatic that thing will become.
This month we are encouraging you to hone your mind fitness onto the expression of gratitude. Why? Because you’ll be a better human. Studies show that we can deliberately cultivate gratitude, and can increase our well-being and happiness by doing so. In addition, gratefulness—and especially expression of it to others—is associated with increased energy, optimism and empathy.
Who wouldn’t want a world with more people like this in it? It also counters the thoughts of scarcity or anxiety about things that you often have.. the “what I don’t have?” thinking is manufactured specifically by companies driven by profit off selling you shit you don't need. They don’t want you content with your life, they want you to want MORE. Being in a state of focusing on what you don’t have, will always lead you empty in the end. You get that short thrill of the new purchase, then it wears off after a while, untill you find the next thing you're told you need to be happy, or on trend or more likable.
You spend this time and money toward self improvement in the gym. Your commitment to your exercise certainly will have the desired effects. But we are not just a body. Your mind needs its “WODS” too. If you need more convincing on the ‘why’, you need to be doing a daily gratitude practice, I found this informative post here
The drive to the gym can be at least 5 mins for some. Lets utilize this time to do our daily mind workout and focus on at least 3 things that we are grateful for. The big things like your health, or the little things like a sweet car park yesterday. ANYTHING. Remember we are training the pathway in your brain that is “my life is good” vs “my life lacks A, B or C”. You need to make this habit in order for it to set and become your automatic thought patterns.
Will it feel weird doing it? Maybe. It feels even more weird saying it out loud. But when you do, it kinda takes it to the next level of realism. To speak your gratitude out loud is like confirming it. Examine why you feel its not typical for you to think this way? (maybe some of you super mind ninjas are already doing this practice and its completely normal for you). For others of us, it’s a bit foreign to actively think this way. But don’t worry, I promise it will get easier. Just like fitness!! It helps to express gratitude towards someone or something. If you believe, then it may be gratitude towards God. If you don’t believe, then just direct your gratitude outwards. Your brain is still renewing itself, and that’s our goal. To reinforce all those benefits you read about, and to create a more happier life within yourself.
Right… time to stop writing. Have to engage in the ‘breakfast, lunchbox, school run’ adventure. I sure am grateful that I have food to feed these challenging humans in my care. There you go, first gratitude rep done for today!!
Good luck in your pursuit of the Mindful May challenge. I wish you all the best and celebrate in your new mind skills and happier lives as a result!