Why holidays are good for Us!

So here we are in mid January already. The Christmas break is a distant memory and any rest we may have had has disappeared leaving many of us already feeling worn out! Just the thought of a planned summer holiday is what keeps us going. But actually there is a good reason for this.
Conscious meditation teaches we are not our bodies or our minds. But seeing as most of us live in our body and mind most of the time...we need a break! Conscious meditation is deliberately putting time aside to notice your thoughts and create space, which creates a sense of calm. With practice Conscious meditation can reduce physical pain and reduce stress. It can also improve memory, increase focus and improve sleep.

                                                   But sadly few people put time aside to consciously meditate.

Instead we get stuck in ‘Habitual’ meditation - unconscious meditation. You see, we are actually meditating all the time. Whatever you are thinking about is what you are meditating on. For most of us we don’t even think about what we are thinking about. True? It’s just habit.

                                                But this type of meditation doesn’t have the same benefits as
                                                                                 'Conscious' meditation.
                                           We can get stuck in unhelpful thinking styles if we are not careful.

We (humans) have a tendency to think about the same things over and over again, going round in circles. Do you recognise that habit? We can blow things out of proportion or overgeneralise. Or maybe split ourselves in half and talk to ourselves, telling ourselves off with sayings like ‘I should ...I must.’ We label, we self criticise, and jump to conclusions. We become agitated with strong opinions that we try to force on others. All these are habitual. We may even believe that some of these habits are helpful to us. Maybe you’re constantly thinking about the past or the future. Habitual. Constantly distracted with thoughts. Habitual. You get the idea.

Then there’s ‘Nature’ meditation. This requires less effort then conscious meditation while naturally taking us out of our habitual state. As the title suggests it’s natural. When we are in nature, we naturally relax.....whether we are walking in the countryside, sitting on the beach, listening to the waves, feeling the wind on our face, hiking steep mountains, playing with pebbles, leaves. collecting twigs, swimming in the sea, watching birds or gazing at the stars ...just to name a few.

                                             Being in nature has many benefits to our health and well being.

According to research from the University of East Anglia exposure to green space reduces the risk of type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, premature death, preterm birth, stress and high blood pressure. Populations with higher levels of green space exposure are also more likely to report good overall health.

Also, exposure to the variety of bacteria present in natural areas may also have benefits for the immune system and reduces inflammation.

Mentalfloss.com goes further. They discuss how the negative ion-rich oxygen found in nature boosts energy. You are less likely to become short sighted, enhances creativity, restores focus, improves relationships and increases a sense of community.

                                                                    But we don’t need scientific evidence.
                                                             We know how we feel when we are in nature.

It’s instinctive. It feels natural. Humans were not meant to live the chaotic habitual lives we have created for ourselves. It's not natural. And due to our ‘habitual’ lifestyles or living in over populated areas, being in nature is not always as easy as it sounds. So we have to consciously make time to be in nature

                                                                That’s why holidays are good for Us! 

Kefalonia is the perfect place to enjoy nature, relax and unwind. With luscious green hills, stunning beaches, sunshine, turtles and star gazing, you can guarantee you will enjoy the many benefits of being in nature.

When the Lady O approaches White Rocks I always get the same feeling. The feeling of contentment. A sense of peace and ease. A sense of gratitude and appreciation. A gravitational pull. A sense of being a part of something beautiful. Being present. A sense of getting away from ‘it’ all.  No habitual thoughts. No worries.

Just Being.

But don't despair. If you can't have a holiday then go for that walk, or make time to consciously meditate. Consciously create a place of nature in your mind. Imagine the sun on your back, the wind in your hair. Imagine your favourite places, your favourite outdoor activities...and smile.

                                          The world is a beautiful place of peace if you consciously look for it

                                                                    . ..Let’s Cruise Together!

Written by Eleni Nicolaou

For the full article by University of East Anglia click the link below.
(It’s official - spending time outside is good for you)
They hope the outcome of their research will inspire people to get outside more and feel the health benefits for themselves.


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