Fitness

How to Overcome a Sedentary Lifestyle 

You may find yourself living a sedentary lifestyle, without even realizing it, so how do you overcome a sedentary lifestyle? Are you stuck in the same daily routines? For the majority of us, those routines include spending hours in sitting in a car or bus, then sitting at a desk, only to leave work and spend more time in the car. If you and your family are anything like me and mine, by the time you get home in the evening and complete the rituals of homework, dinner, and bath, it’s time for bed. What is missing in these habitual routines?  The great outdoors.

Take the time to look around you and think about how much time you and the people around you spend outdoors. A whopping 93% of people’s time is spent indoors in one way or another. In theory, you may think that a quick daily trip to the gym is all that your body needs to stay healthy. But the truth of the matter is, your need to get up and move isn’t just about exercise. Some of the side effects of living a sedentary lifestyle, can include, chronic fatigue, inability to lose weight, irritability, and excessive stress.

People, more specifically our body’s, are meant to be active. As we evolve as a race, technology is evolving with us, seemingly causing us to become more stationary and far less active. The effects that a sedentary lifestyle can take on our overall health, are risky and more than enough reason for us all to get up and get moving.

1  Heart Disease

Less movement, equals less blood flow. This gives fat in your body the opportunity to set still and increase your risk of a clogged artery in your heart, which may lead to coronary heart disease and increase your overall risk of cardiovascular disease.

2  Lack of Circulation

A lack of movement can leave you with bad circulation. Bad circulation can lead to blood clots, swelling, and pain.

3  Concentration

Though sitting down at your desk when you need to work may seem like the ideal circumstance for optimal concentration. Sitting for too long can lead to a lack of blood flow to the brain, ultimately leading to the inability to concentrate.

couch photo

 

4  Bone and Muscle

Even with daily workouts at the gym, you still may not be doing enough to keep your body up to optimal physical health. Once again, our bodies are meant to be active and that mean for more than an hour a day. Bone strength and muscle mass will eventually see a negative effect from your sedentary lifestyle.

How to Get Up and Get Moving

If you have taken the time to realize that you need to put a stop to your sedentary lifestyle, then you need to start taking the steps to get out of your normal habits.

  • Start by setting yourself reminders to get up and take a short walk. Set up several throughout the day and go for a relaxing stroll. Instead of ordering lunch in, take the time to walk to a local lunch spot or take a quick stroll through a local garden or park.
  • If you work closely with co-workers often, try scheduling a working meeting. Chances are they need to get up and out of the office to. If all you are doing is talking through things, a stroll is a good environment to get the thought processes motivated.
  • Try implementing other workouts into your daily gym routines, such as, take a local yoga class that Is hosted in the park or trade in that weekend movie date for a bike ride.
  • Take the kids for a walk in the evening rather than setting down to catch up on your DVR. Chances are they could use the outdoors time as much as you and it’s a great way to burn up the last of their built up energy for a good night’s sleep.

Starting small is always the first step to making a lifestyle change. Even if you can only implement one new habit at a time, it is still a start worth making. Eventually you will start to feel more energized, more focused, and overall, healthier than ever!

Does Green Coffee Extract Really Help with Weight Loss? 

Green Coffee photoGreen coffee extract is exactly as it sounds, a supplement extracted from green coffee beans for the purpose of making weight loss supplements’. Green coffee beans are simply unroasted coffee beans when roasted the coffee beans lose their chlorogenic acid value, which is believed to be the compound responsible for weight loss properties. As with other fad weight loss supplements’, the interest in green coffee as a weight loss supplement skyrocketed after being mentioned on national TV for its weight loss properties. The big question is; does it really work or is it just another weight loss trend that is too good to be true?

Do the Claims Have Any Real Standing? 

If you scan an isle of diet pills and supplements, you are sure to find a ton of weight loss supplements that claim to be the miracle solution. Green coffee extract is sure to be right there among the others. While the claims that green tea extract can aid in weight loss have only been vaguely studied; the studies that have been done aren’t exactly a strong suit for the argument of if it being that the miracle weight loss supplement that it has been made out to be.

According to, the National Library of Medicine, the original study that was cited when green coffee extract made its claim to fame on nation TV, was retracted as of July 2014. The original study stated that test subjects showed significant reductions in body weight, body mass index, and overall percent of body fat; as well as a small decrease in heart rate. All results were noted to be found with no significant changes to diet over the course of the study. It was concluded that the results were consistent with human and animal studies and a meta-analysis of the efficiency of green coffee extract in weight loss. The results showed that green coffee extract may be an effective nutraceutical in reducing weight in adults and may be an inexpensive means of preventing obesity.

According to, Fox News, the article was retracted due to the authors being unable to validate the claims that were being made. The retraction of the original study doesn’t necessarily mean that there is no benefit on weight loss from green tea extract; it does, however, mean that there isn’t enough evidence to support its sudden claim to fame. Green coffee extract, is by no means, an instant miracle weight loss supplement that will answer all of your weight loss needs. While it may still be healthy and beneficial, it is extremely important to speak with your primary care physician before starting any over the counter medications and supplements.

It is believed, that this is one of the main reasons that the evidence based on the above study was retracted. Green tea extract received an instant overnight boost in popularity just by being mentioned on an acclaimed television show. For that reason, people began rushing out to purchase it based on the one study noted. While it is believed that green coffee extract can be beneficial for weight loss, type 2 diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease, and high blood pressure; there is still no research supported evidence to validate any of the popular claims.

9 Surprising Hacks to Lose Weight  

Weight  loss photo

Weight loss is always a hot topic, I fact, I’m not sure if it has even not been a leading topic in conversations around the world. We have all seen the millions of ad’s and promotions promising you miracles overnight. Well, if you haven’t yet noticed, there is no such thing as a miracle weight loss supplement. There is no pill or perfect diet that will miraculously turn you into the person you have always wanted to be without committing to lifestyle changes. The good news is, there are so many natural ways to help boost your weight loss and give you the upper hand. These aren’t miracles in a bottle or even hidden secrets; instead, they are natural, healthy weight loss hacks to aid you along the way.

1  Cod Liver oil  

Among the many benefits of cod liver oil, is the high amount of vitamin D that it contains. The combination of the two brings many health benefits, including weight loss. Studies have shown that women with vitamin D deficiencies have a harder time losing weight and that the use of cod liver oil can not only work to increase your metabolism, it can also aid in turning fat into muscle. Cod liver oil is primarily taken for its high content of vitamin D and vitamin A, which lends itself exceptionally well to weight loss.

If you are trying to lose weight or considering starting a weight loss regimen, you should consult your physician about checking your vitamin D levels. This is especially true if you don’t spend very much time outdoors to soak in vitamin D from the sun. Cod liver oil gives you approximately 1,360 IU per tablespoon of a recommended 2,000 IU per day. The one concern with cod liver oil is the high amount of vitamin A. While it is beneficial to our health, it is also naturally produced by the body, where vitamin D is not. So, while you are taking a vitamin A supplement, your body is also mass producing the nutrient on its own; leaving the risk of too much vitamin A consumption.

od liver oil also contains a healthy dose of omega-3 fatty acids, which are equally beneficial for weight loss. While cod liver oil does not contain as much fatty acid as other fish oil, it can still prove to be a beneficial dose to aid in weight loss and obesity. Research and studies involving cod liver oil and weight loss are extremely limited; the majority of the merit given to cod liver oil for weight loss is focused around what we know about vitamin D and weight loss and the relationship between omega-3 fatty acids and weight loss.

2  Resistance Training   

Resistance training is similar to weight training and despite its name is not resistance to exercise, rather, training your body with external resistance. Resistance training can be done with any objects that cause the muscles to contract, such as, weights. Resistance training can be used to build muscle strength, increase muscle size, and build aerobic endurance. It is based on the principle that your body muscles will work to overcome a resisting force when needed. As you continue resistance training, your muscles will become stronger and larger. Some examples of resistance training are:

  • Exercising with free weights, such as, dumbbells and barbells.
  • Exercising with resistance bands that provide resistance when they are stretched, similar to a giant rubber band.
  • Exercises that use your own body weight to create resistance, such as, squats, push-ups, and chin ups.
  • Working out with weight machines or weight benches that have adjustable weights or hydraulics.

Resistance training is not only used as a weight loss aid, it also has many other physical and health benefits to your overall health. The attributes include weight loss, improved mobility and balance, increased bone density and strength, pain management, muscle strength and tone, flexibility, and balance. Resistance training can be used as a complete body workout routine that can benefit every problem are, as well as your overall physical and mental health.

Typically, a beginner routine for resistance training will contain 8-10 exercises that are used to work the major muscle of the body and are to be completed 2-3 times a week. The goal is to gradually increase the number of sets for each exercise. Once you have gained the muscle resistance to complete approximately 12 reps of a particular exercise, you then begin to progress further by continuing to safely and slowly introduce more resistance to your workout.  In order to get the most benefits from resistance training you will need to progressively increase the intensity of your work out. Some of the key factors to consider when contemplating beginning a resistance training routine are:

  • What program you will use. If you are new to resistance training, you should consider speaking with a trainer at your gym or someone knowledgeable in resistance training. If you don’t know what you are doing it could be easy to overdo it and cause damage to your muscles.
  • It is very important to remember that you need to rest between sets. You also need to allow time for your muscles to recover between workouts. Typically, a 48-hour period is preferred between workouts to allow for muscle repair and recovery before working the same muscle group again.
  • Warming up before resistance training is just as important as the workout itself. A light aerobic exercise, such as, walking along with stretches will do the trick. Just be sure to do a dynamic stretching in a full range of motion to prep your muscles for the resistance training to come.

3  Oolong Tea   

Oolong tea has essentially been dubbed the combination tea, with differing benefits found in both green tea and black tea, it is the super tea of health benefits. Oolong tea is believed to activate enzymes in the body that enhance the functions of fat cells, a daily consumption is said to fight obesity. It is still unknown whether or not the benefits of oolong tea and weight loss come from the caffeine content or from polyphenols. Regardless of which is more beneficial for weight loss, studies in mice have shown a decline in overall body weight and fat index from being given polyphenols, similar to those found in oolong tea. Leaving speculators to lean more towards polyphenols as the most beneficial weight loss component of oolong tea.

Though there are a limited number of studies surrounding oolong tea and its weight loss properties, one study in particular showed beneficial weight loss results for men who consumed oolong tea daily and determined oolong tea to be a beneficial way to increase metabolic rate and fat oxidation in men.  It is believed that consuming oolong tea daily can be beneficial for weight loss in both men and women.

 4  Vitamin D3   

As mentioned previously regarding cod liver oil, a vitamin D deficiency can be quite the culprit working against weight loss, especially in women. Vitamin D3 is not naturally created in the body, which leads to many people unknowingly having a vitamin D3 deficiency. Vitamin D3 is synthesized when your body is exposed to ultraviolet light, aka the sun. If you spend more than a generous amount of time outdoors or in the tanning bed, you probably have nothing to worry about. But if you are trying to lose weight and aren’t known for spending any more time outdoors than you have to, you should most definitely have your doctor check for a deficiency to be safe.

A vitamin D3 shortage could be slowing down your weight loss goals and causing you to lose less weight than someone with a healthy amount of vitamin D3 would. The recommended intake of vitamin D3 per day is 200 IU, but it is recommended that when taking a supplement that you take in at least 5,000 IU a day. However, spending a mere 20-30 minutes out in the sunlight a day can produce around 10,000 IU of vitamin D3. The best way to find out how much vitamin D3 you need is to consult a physician based on the results of a vitamin D test.

5  Cinnamon  

Many studies have been performed regarding cinnamon and its many effects on the human body. Overall the results from these studies have varied. Some believe that the use of cinnamon can be extremely beneficial in weight loss and controlling blood sugar, as well as insulin the body. While other results suggest that there isn’t enough of a change in these factors to count cinnamon as a good weight loss suppliant. This being said, there have been more studies showing results from cinnamon than un-beneficial results.

The way that cinnamon is believed to effect weight loss is through reduction in post-meal glucose hyperglycemia, a condition where there is an excess of glucose released after a meal. Studies have shown that cinnamon extract can reduce the amount of glucose released. Though the majority of the studies have been based around cinnamon, weight loss, and type 2 diabetes; it is believed that even those without type 2 diabetes can benefit from cinnamons ability to block excess glucose and has been especially effective in aiding those with metabolic syndrome.

Cinnamon works to regulate blood sugar and increase insulin levels, thus, increasing the metabolism of glucose. High blood sugar levels can lead to an increased amount of fat being stored in the body and cinnamon can help to prevent this excess storage. It can also have an effect on how your body metabolizes sugar, preventing it from being turned into fat. Cinnamon can easily be incorporated into your daily diet through tea, smoothies, or anything else you can easily fit the flavor of cinnamon into. Since cinnamon is not a scientifically proven treatment, more of a homeopathic one, there is no set daily dosage. However, some recommendations believe that 1 tsp. per day is a sufficient amount. The amount used in studies involving cinnamon have ranged anywhere from 1tsp to 6tsp per day.

 6  Protein For Breakfast   

We all know that eating breakfast is a key part of living a healthy, well balanced life. But for many of us breakfast consists of something sugary, greasy, or straight out of a vending machine. It is pretty safe to say that this isn’t what the experts are talking about when they say that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Eating a well-balanced diet is extremely important and this starts with a healthy and nutritious breakfast. In fact, if you speak to most people who are very committed to a healthy lifestyle or workout regimen, the majority will probably tell you that they eat more at breakfast than at any other meal.

Breakfast is brain food and the kick start that sets the tone for the entire day; but it isn’t just important to eat breakfast when you are trying to lose weight. It is also important for you to eat a healthy serving of protein for breakfast. Protein is packed full of amino acids that are the building blocks for each and every living cell in our bodies. Eating protein produces insulin and the hormone glucagon that stimulates the body to burn fat for energy. Eating a healthy protein packed breakfast will allow you to stay full longer, eat less during the day, provide your body with the energy it needs to burn during the day, and is said to be a key component in living a healthy lifestyle.

7  Don’t Overdo Nuts   

In the attempt to eat healthier, you may be bombarded by nut based everything. Everywhere you look you have probably seen nut butters of every kind, nut milk’s, nut based grain replacements, and so much more. But the truth of the matter is, even though nuts are good for you, they need to be eaten in moderation. Nuts are high in phytic acid, which causes decreased iron absorption along with a decrease in other nutrients. Phytic acid is a form of phosphorus found in many plans that cannot be digested by humans. It binds minerals, especially iron, in food and prevents our bodies from absorbing it. So, while nuts are good for you based on their nutrient profile, we may not be absorbing as many of the benefits as we believe we are. Phytic acid also interferes with digestion by affecting enzymes that we need in order to digest food.

This doesn’t necessarily rule out all previous belief that nuts are good for you and work as a weight loss aid; it just means that you need to consume nuts in more moderation than some diets suggest. Nuts are still a great healthy snack that is far better for you than many other things that you may be trying to avoid. Just keep in mind that you aren’t benefiting from all of the nutrients on the label.

8  Mineral Water 

While many of us have always believed that water was water; mineral water offers more nutrients than standard everyday tap water. Mineral water can be purchased pretty much anywhere that you would buy bottled water and can easily be identified by its label. Only water containing more than 250 parts per million of total dissolved solids may be labeled as mineral water. Mineral water is bottled from natural mineral springs, once known as healing waters. Manufacturers are not allowed to add any minerals to bottled mineral water and every bottle must be labeled for its mineral content.

When trying to lose weight, it is essential to nourish your body with the proper vitamins and minerals that it needs. Mineral water can provide a much needed nutritional boost, containing magnesium, sulfate, calcium, silica, and sodium. Mineral water also contains bicarbonate, which will help to maintain your body’s pH balance. Mineral water is suggested to be most beneficial during a weight loss journey when consumed during and after your workout regimen to keep you hydrated and replenish everything you sweated out during your workout.

9  Sleep 

Sleep deprivation is alive and well; if you haven’t experienced it, consider yourself lucky. The majority of people don’t get enough sleep and are rushing around with sleepy brain trying to make informed and healthy decisions that they aren’t really alert enough to accomplish. Not getting enough sleep can lead to a snowball effect on your day. First you wake up tire or late and skip your morning workout. Then, you replace breakfast with your favorite fatty, sugar filled x-large latte on the way to work. By the end of the day you have given up on healthy options all together and pick up takeout on the way home. See how this could have a negative effect on weight loss. Studies have shown that a lack of sleep leads to bad decisions, especially bad food choices such as, late night snacks and over eating.

A lack of sleeps connection to weight loss isn’t just about superficial comfort that we cave to during periods of exhaustion. A lack of sleep affects your hormones, ghrelin and leptin, the sleep hormones. The hormone ghrelin signals your brain that it is time for you to eat and when you are sleep deprived your body created more of the hormone than you need. The other sleep hormone, leptin, cues your brain that you are full. When you are short on sleep, leptin levels decrease, which in turn increases how much you are consuming. To top off the sleepy hormone imbalance comes cortisol, a stress hormone that tells your body to conserve energy, causing you to store more fat.

A lack of sleep and reduce the overall amount of weight that you are losing, not to mention it will leave you struggling to stick to any diet or weight loss plan. A good night’s sleep is a must for anyone, but especially so if you are trying to lose weight. You can’t look healthy and fit on the inside, if you aren’t taking the necessary steps to stay healthy on the inside.

Do Raspberry Ketones Really Help With Weight Loss?  

Raspberry ketones are a chemical found in raspberries and other fruits such as kiwi, grapes, peaches, and apples. Raspberry ketones can also be found in some vegetables and tree bark. Raspberry ketones are most popularly used as an ingredient in cosmetics, a skin treatment for hair loss, and as a flavoring agent in foods. It has gained recent popularity as a weight loss supplement after being mentioned on a popular television show. After its national debut, people started seeking out raspberry ketones in any form of supplement they could find available. Raspberry ketone supplements are most often not made or produced from raspberries. Instead, raspberry ketones found in supplements are synthetically made.  The question is, does this really help with weight loss?

What do Raspberry Ketone Supplements Claim They Do for Weight Loss?

The majority of raspberry ketone supplements have the same general claims for weight loss. The supplements are supposed to do things, such as burning stored fat, decreasing blood sugar, increasing adiponectin levels, boost metabolism, and appetite suppressing. Each different supplement has a different set of claims and uses, depending on the brand and dosage.

The Results

Studies have shown some results from raspberry ketones in lab rats and mice but in high dosages. Test results for raspberry ketones on humans are limited and the few studies have had varying results.  According to, Authority Nutrition, humans would have to consume around 100 times the recommended dosage to see similar results to rats and mice used in studies. Even then, the test subjects did not lose weight, they simply gained 5% less weight when gorging on an unhealthy overfill of food.

Should You Try Raspberry Ketones for Weight loss?

The truth of the matter is, no one has any evidence that raspberry ketone supplement’s yield any weight loss results. It is believed that most weight loss results from raspberry are more than likely from other additives in the supplements’. Most supplements contain not only raspberry ketones but also caffeine, ginger, and many other additives that are believed to help with weight loss. While the FDA has approved raspberry ketone supplement “Generally Safe”, there isn’t very much research backing their safeness or effectiveness. There is also a great deal of concern surrounding the fact that some raspberry ketone supplements are advertised as “natural”, when in fact they are artificial simulations of authentic raspberries. This is because real raspberry ketones are both extremely hard to harvest and expensive.

Photo by Macnetize.com

9 Small Things You Can Do to Lose Weight 

Setting out on a weight loss journey can be far more intimidating than it truly should be. Signing up for a year-long gym membership filled with fees or a diet plan that purely takes the joy out of your day to day life, aren’t your only options. If you are just fed up with your weight or even just looking to maintain a healthy weight; the small things can always make a difference. It may not seem like something as simple as taking the stairs can make a difference, but remember that all of the small things add up over time! The most important part of benefiting from small changes in your day to day life is to stay committed and consistent. Opting to take the stairs once a month is likely to only give your ego a boost for that one day rather than affect your overall fitness level. Make a plan and stick to it; Start out with just one little change at a time, when it has become natural to you, add in another small step. Over time, the benefits of your simple changes will start to show through to a healthier you!

stairs photo

1  Take the stairs 

Opting to take the stairs instead of the elevator is a no-brainer and is more than likely the easiest workout to commit to. Taking the stairs is a free workout with no equipment needed and is a great way to build up leg muscle. Even if you have a gym membership, climbing the stairs daily can help the transition to harder leg workouts at the gym a breeze.

2  Avoid Going Out to Eat 

Going out to eat and picking up takeout have become a normal occurrence in the hectic day to day lives of most people. But the reality is, it just isn’t very good for you. Even if you are going somewhere with the intention of ordering something healthy, temptation will be everywhere. Cooking a healthy dinner at home will give you control over everything you put into the dish and the portion size that hits your plate.

3  Workout During Commercials  

If you are feeling the guilt from curling up on the sofa to watch your favorite reality show rather than hitting the gym; customizing a workout that you can do during commercial breaks is a great idea. It gives you time to indulge in TV and do it guilt free. The average TV show has approximately 15 minutes’ worth of commercial breaks; if you watch two shows a day and workout during all of the commercials, that’s your 30 minute recommended daily workout!

4  Sit On a Ball at Work 

You may be thinking “but I work in a respectful office” on this one, but that is exactly the point! Trade out your office chair for a yoga ball. Sitting on a yoga ball at work all day can give you the ultimate multitasking ability! Trading out your chair for a ball will allow you to burn up to 350 calories a day, just from doing the same thing you have been doing every day already! It is also really good for your spine alignment and posture.

5  Use a Pedometer 

A pedometer is a tiny device that counts how many steps you make a day. You can buy one to clip to your waste, a bracelet, and even download them to your smartphone. Using a pedometer is about more than just counting your steps, it is about motivating yourself. Set a goal for how many steps you think you can walk in a day, start out slow and then increase it. At the end of the day take note of how many steps you took. Not only will you be burning calories, but you will also give you a sense of accomplishment when you reach your goal and continuous motivation.

6  Avoid Drinking Carbohydrates  

Of a 2,000 calories recommended daily diet, how many of those calories do you think you are drinking? If you, like so many others, love coffee, soda, tea, and alcohol, then you probably consume at least one or more of these a day. If you truly only indulge once a day, than you are probably on the right track; but as for the rest of us, we are wasting our allotted calories and carbohydrates on empty calories and carbs. If you feel like this could be you, start out slow by keeping a diary of what you ate and drank all day. Continue to do so and write down the calories and carbohydrates for everything you can. At the end of a day, calculate how many empty calories you drank vs. from healthy foods you ate. Once you see how many calories and carbohydrates you are drinking in rather than eating a healthy snack with vitamins and protein, you will start to hold yourself accountable and be more aware of what you are putting into your body!

7 Avoid Sugary Foods 

This may seem like the hardest thing ever, I mean let’s face it, sugar Is in nearly everything! Avoiding sugar has more benefits than just weight loss and is a change you should consider making, even if you aren’t looking for a dramatic weight loss. Sugar contributes to obesity, heart disease, diabetes, and the list just keeps going. Even if you start out small, like substituting the sugar in your coffee or tea for honey, will make a difference in the long run!

8  Get Plenty of Sleep 

Research has shown that when you are short on sleep or staying up late at night, there is an increase in how much snacking and overeating you do. Your brain needs sleep to and when you are short on it, you start to crave junk and overeat. Not to mention, if you are getting less than the recommended amount of sleep, you are less likely to work out the following day. Sleep is vital for energy and a healthy lifestyle.

9  Prepare Snacks

Snacking can easily be a downfall, if snacks are not prepared ahead of time. It’s easier to grab a bag of chips than to make a healthy snack.. the solution? Prepare those snacks ahead of time. Cutting up vegetables like bell peppers (in a variety of colors), wash off fruit or box up those leftovers for the next time your stomach grumbles.

How to Set up A Space for Meditation 

meditation photo
Photo by Moyan_Brenn

 

When you close your eyes and envision the perfect meditation space you may be instantly taken to a Zen garden filled with statues and serenity. Chances are, this serene place doesn’t exist in your hectic daily life, nor does it fit into your “I don’t have a million dollars for a Zen Garden” Budget. But that’s okay! Creating your own meditation space doesn’t have to be inconvenient or expensive. You simply need a quiet, somewhat serene environment that will allow you to focus and breath, even if only for a short time a day.

Choose a Space

The first thing that you will need to decide, is where you intend to build your meditation space. Ideally, in a perfect world, a garden or spare room that can be dedicated solely to meditation would be wonderful. But if this isn’t an option for you, don’t fret. Seek out a space in your home that you can steel a corner from or that is peaceful enough that you could easily sneak away to, without interruption.

If you are looking to create a meditation space at work, chances are you’re limited to the confines of your office. Creating a meditation space at work is still an option, even if you are limited on space. Choose an area on the floor, maybe by a window, where you will be secluded from the stresses of work. Little things, such as clearing away your work, or laptop before you begin meditation may help you to clear away the stress of the workday and get it off your mind while you are meditating.

Decorate Your Space

Find the line between decorating a space and simplicity; while you need some things to make it feel like your surreal space, clutter and excess stuff are not likely to provide you with positive energy and a relaxing area. Instead of opting for many things, choose a few small things that complete the space for you.

  • You will need somewhere to sit, whether it be pillows, a yoga mat, omeditation photor a blanket, designate it for meditation. If you are creating a space at home, you may opt for cushions in soothing colors, while at work, it may prove easier to unroll a yoga mat and remove it when you are done.
  • Create an altar that can hold a few simple things that are symbolic to you. Anything that is of emotional or spiritual value to you can be placed on your altar. Consider a small statue or a bamboo plant.
  • If you are creating your space within another space, purchasing a small chest, storage ottoman or just a pretty box to place your things in when you are finished could be a good option. For instance, in your office, you could store your yoga mat and altar items for easy access. When you are ready to meditate pull them out. You could also use the box or chest as your altar; drape a pretty scarf or piece of fabric across the top and use it as the altar table.
  • If you are looking for more privacy, consider purchasing a privacy screen. Privacy screens are typically lightweight and easy to move around if you need to put it away or against a wall when you aren’t meditating and will give you the privacy you desire when you are meditating.

Photo by Moyan_Brenn