Saturday, December 18, 2010

The 40min investment

For the last ~2 weeks my work life has gone crazy, average working hours are from 9:30AM-9:00PM with a lunch break of half hour and most times it boils down to grab something and eat in the lab. There was no break over the weekend either. Due to this, I was going home tired and drained every day. Because of the time I reach home, dinner was late and hence sleeping late and all such bad habits added to the agony.

In my previous life where I was doing simulations, I could take breaks while computer was crunching numbers and head to the gym or go for a run or do something physical to keep my spirits up, but the current situation is being stuck in the lab and there is more work for me and less work for the computer. In short no physical exercise is possible. 

Last night I got tired of this routine and decided to do something about this, of course there were several solutions ranging from taking time off for a day (if possible) or so and sleep through or go to the gym early in the morning before getting to work and so on. After a short analysis I figured, I do not lack sleep and hence sleeping longer wasn’t going to help; exercising early in the morning is good but somehow it doesn’t fit me (I have tried this in the past and concluded that evening is the best time for this).  

The answer to my problem was in the seven letter word “Sadhana”, the definition of which could vary depending upon whom you talk to; From my definition it is the routine that gets completed in 40mins or so and has to be done first thing in the morning. So, I set the alarm and made up my mind to wake up when the alarm goes off and slept a peaceful sleep.

Today morning I completed the 40min event and went on to do my other daily activities, I could see a remarkable difference in my energy levels through out the day. As usual I had a couple of meetings late in the evening and action items to catch up after the meeting and by the time I went home I was less than half as tired as I would have been otherwise.

I could have invested this 40mins every day and felt the same way everyday but I am not that disciplined (read lazy).

ps: if you want to know the what I am talking about do the YES+ or the Art of Living Course.     

Tuesday, December 07, 2010

NPR Article Highlights Research on the Power of Breath

As Sri Sri Ravi Shankar has commented for many years, science is slowly catching up to the power of breath and meditation. Studies continue to emerge proving the physiological and psychological benefits of regular meditation and pranayam practice.

On Monday, NPR aired an article about new research confirming the impact of breath work on blood pH and blood pressure, the body's reaction to stressful situations and even the expression of genes. Physician Mladen Golubic of the Cleveland Clinic's Center for Integrative Medicine, Esther Sternberg, a researcher at the National Institute of Mental Health and Harvard researcher Herbert Benson are all quoted in the article. You can check it out here.

Enjoy and keep up your breathing practice to continue experiencing these great benefits firsthand!