My sister bought me a Shakti Mat for my birthday. I had a rough idea on what they were about as I knew she had bought one to help her with migraines. A Shakti Mat is a foam mat with spikes on it. It is essentially a portable acupuncture mat. The mats are made by women in India.
For the last few months I have been slowly building up to laying on it for 20 minutes. My first few goes probably lasted a couple of minutes as it really was painful. Slowly but surely over the weeks I built up to laying on the mat for 20 minuets. I try and lay on the mat about two times a week. It really helps me relax after a busy day and switch off from work. I did do some research on the website for Shakti. I read about standing on the mat for 5 minutes at the start and end of your day. This helps you increase the flow to your feet which carries most of your weight every day. I have now incorporated my Shakti mat into my morning routine.
Every morning including weekends I do my meditation in the morning and then stand on the mat (in socks) for 5 minuets. Eventually I would like to build up to no socks. I found using the mat has really helped me unwind. When I do the mat before bed I have a deeper sleep that night. Using the mat also forces yourself to take a little bit of your day and focus on yourself. We all get so wrapped up with running around and pleasing everyone. It is good for the body to take some time out and look after yourself. I would highly recommend this product to anyone who is wanting to practice a little bit of self care.
I have used the Head Space app now for a week. I wanted to really try meditation and see if this could help me on my mindfulness journey. I did also ask on my Instagram story if people had used the app…and 25 percent of you had. I downloaded the app and picked the program that focused on anxiety.
I had talked to a few friends and some people at work who had used or were using the app, it seems to be the most popular choice. I decided to do it in the morning before I went to work. The first morning was a bit of a disaster as I was late to work as my jeans had tried to make a quick get away over the balcony. I did do my first meditation that day but it was in the evening.
Each day you do a 3 min meditation. A mans voice guides you through the 3 mins helping you focus on your breathing and your body. Despite the first day every other day I listened in the morning. I found it a really calm way to start the morning and 3 mins out of your morning is really nothing at all. I have even listened to the app on the train to work it really does set you up to face the day. I also turned on the mindful notifications. The app sends you a few messages through out the day of some simple mindfulness tips.
After a week of mediation and mindfulness reminders I do feel different. As already mentioned I feel like my day has started in a calm way. Even if I have a morning where I feel I have been running around and then do the meditation on the way to work it still brings my mind to a peaceful state. I feel like I am more in tuned with my body doing the meditation and really listening to it. Listening to my body and being in tuned with it is helping me push forward with my fitness and knowing my limits. The mindfulness tips are all simple to perform during your average day. Even if I don’t do them just seeing the tip on my phone reminds me to take a minute and then return to what ever task I am doing. I always find when I stress at work I do not perform as well but if I keep my mind focused on the tasks I will perform to my best. I actually had a really busy day at work today and I did notice that I was a lot calmer then normal. I did not let the stress cloud the task. I am going to stick with the app for now and keep growing my meditation skills.
I would highly recommend this app if you have ever thought about trying meditation. It is easy to use and I found it very affective at showing you the way to get into meditation.