Meditate Like The Stars (Healthy Hollywood)

What do Oprah, Katy Perry and Sir Paul McCartney have in common? Well, they all meditate.

Many mega-successful folks, whether they’re actors, business moguls or musicians, take the time to calm their mind and re-charge!

It’s powerful stuff! Or, says anyone who has tried it and kept up the practice.

Meditation has certainly come into the mainstream. Healthy Hollywood noticed an increasing number of wellness articles last year spotlighting the benefits of meditation. Study after study shows this mind-body practice can change your life for the better.

“I think it’s important you try it. The scientific research has shown it calms people down. It reduces stress. It reduces heart disease, blood pressure and slows down your breathing rate. A lot of research has shown it reduces depression, anxiety and craving,” reveals meditation expert Andy Puddicombe to Healthy Hollywood. Plus, it will super-charge creativity and focus.

A longtime practitioner, Andy started up the website and app, Headspace, which he calls a “gym membership for the mind.” His goal is to bring meditation to the masses and make it more accessible and doable for everybody. Actress Emma Watson Tweeted out her support of Headspace, calling the site “genius.”

“There are loads of people who say they tried meditation and couldn’t do it or their minds were too busy. But, for me, anybody can meditate if they know how to approach it the right way,” explains Andy.

Headspace offers a free guided meditation program called Take 10, which is set up to teach folks how to begin their practice starting with just 10 minutes a day for 10 days.

“The biggest mistake people make is they think it’s about not having thoughts and it’s not. It’s about witnessing thoughts and not reacting to them. If we can find a place within ourselves where we can watch our mind and see our mind, whether it’s busy or quiet,” adds Andy.

The idea is to be able to acknowledge thoughts that may arise, but not to react to every whim. So, as the mind calms down the body will also calm down. Meditation is not a competition, nor is it a race to see how quickly you can calm down. “A thought appears in the mind and the temptation is to follow it as a habit we’ve always done. Meditation offers us the possibility of seeing it as a thought and realizing we don’t have to react to it. We can let it go and come back to whatever we are doing and carry on.”

So, why not start a meditation practice in 2014? To find out how to begin, check out www.headspace.com

-- Terri MacLeod

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