The third Monday of January has been awarded the gloomy title of Blue Monday a combination of post-Christmas blues, cold dark nights and the arrival of unpaid credit card bills.

The date is infact a PR stunt that was cleverly calculated Sky Travel that used factors, including: weather conditions, debt level (the difference between debt accumulated and our ability to pay), time since Christmas, time since failing our new year’s resolutions, low motivational levels and feeling of a need to take action.

Regardless, these days exist for us all and can be very uncomfortable.  But like all things it’s how we deal with them makes us who we are.  

We could go out for a meal, shop, go to the gym or watch a funny film.  Which would have a limited but short term success.   It wouldn’t take long for such feelings to reappear!  

Others may choose to use positive affirmations to deal with such discomfort and whilst there are some who believe this works it also has the potential to bring on a whole new set of contradictions for the mind to deal with.

I mean is it really positive if deep down you are feeling so down!

Personally I choose to own it, by just being with it.  I don’t mind the thoughts, just go with feelings.  If they bring up tears or anger I just sit with that too and let it all flow.  Its a fascinating and liberating process for the more comfortable we are with such feelings the less we have to fear.

In some ways maybe these days should be “Growth Opportunity Day” or “Days of Evolvement” as any day that gives us an opportunity to grow should ALMOST be cherished.  I say ALMOST because we are human after all and the reality is it can be painful. 

So whether you are struggling today or maybe any other, do be easy on yourself.

Testimonial
Andre is a wise, kind & happy soul! Spending time with him learning TM was wonderful. I was in a a dark place, and he met me there with true wisdom & compassion. I am truly grateful for his teaching, which I have carried forward into my life. Thank you Andre!

For more information or to book upcoming course in Transcendental Meditation or to book a wellbeing talk for your office please contact hello@andreberrymeditation.co.uk

18 years ago when I first started looking at Meditation as a way for dealing with stress.  I must admit I was concerned that whilst I accepted it may help me deal with such levels of discomfort.  It may also take away my energy and alround passion for life.

This was largely down to my perception of what meditation is, along with seeing pictures of people meditating and looking so calm.  This was enhanced further after connecting with teachers, some of whom came across very content in life.

Whilst these were all qualities I admired I certainly didn’t want to lose anything as a consequence of it.

Fortunately through becoming a teacher and more importantly experiencing it first hand I now recognise we don’t lose that energy or passion for life rather than become more connected to it

In learning how to deal with stress more efficiently through meditation our body becomes less affected by it.  

Thus energy that would naturally be tied up in coping with such situations would instead be put to better use such as our passions of living life itself.

Many that have learnt, have also understood the power of such practice through experience doesn’t so much as chill us out, rather than invigorate us. 

Allowing us to take on the challenges of life in more of an alert, energised and present state and whilst a sense of calm is also often experienced it doesn’t actually stop us from doing anything rather than supports us in doing it.

Recent Testimonial 

I can recommend Andre’s TM course. It was easy to follow and really enjoyable. The time flew by and the practice has already helped with my stress levels. Looking forward to enjoying the process for years.

For more information or to book upcoming course in Transcendental Meditation or to book a wellbeing talk for your office please contact hello@andreberrymeditation.co.uk

Christmas season is here again, it’s a time for family and friends to come together and bring happiness to one another.

It’s also a time when the many of the positive wellbeing habits that we have so wisely incorporated into our lifestyle over the last few months 

Start to fall by the wayside as party invitation after invitation starts to come through and let’s be honest who doesn’t enjoy a good party!

But there is room for both, we just really need to want it and why wouldn’t we want to maintain our regular meditation and yoga practise throughout this period 

For whilst the family get togethers and parties can be fun for most.  It can also an extremely stressing period too.    

Infact whilst many will have a great Christmas, 2 in 5 Britons will have felt stressed during the festive season, while about 1 in 4 will of struggled with anxiety or depression.

As we know Meditation and Yoga not only effectively deals with anxiety and depression and other stress related issues it can also bring a natural sense of happiness too.

A sense of happiness that leads to a greater yet more natural appreciation of all that we have right here, right now.  The ultimate present of presence in so many ways!      

So let’s bring a little extra Christmas cheer and sparkle this year to our lives and look to maintain our practise throughout and if we don’t have a practise now, then what an incredible time to learn.    

   

https://yougov.co.uk/topics/health/articles-reports/2019/12/18/christmas-harms-mental-health-quarter-brits

For more information or to book upcoming course in Transcendental Meditation or to book a wellbeing talk for your office please contact hello@andreberrymeditation.co.uk

 

Sometime in the not so distant future the secret to anti-aging may well come in a bottle or via a treatment. But many believe the secret has always been with us and that there are techniques that have been around for thousands of years that can not just reduce wrinkles but also help us deal with the stresses that bring on premature aging in the first place.

Now Meditation and Yoga might not appear the most obvious answer at first but the reality is stress ages our body like nothing else.

According to the Vedic Tradition (from which Ayurveda and Yoga also originate from) stress is our inability to process life experience as and when it happens. Building up within us and weighing us down, affecting us in all that we do!

It can lead to sleepless nights, overeating, poor diets and a lack of desire to exercise, be it on the running track, in the swimming pool or in the bedroom

Worse still, it can put us on the path to drinking and smoking to excess. Both of which are not only rapid aging accelerators but also have the potential to lead to numerous diseases including ones of a cardiovascular nature and cancer.

So our ability to deal with stress plays an important and vital role if we are looking to maintain a youthful and energetic approach to life and let’s face it why wouldn’t we.

Meditation naturally releases stresses that we have accumulated throughout everyday life. The majority of the time without even realising it and as it is cleared/released it leaves energy that would otherwise be entangled in stress to quite simply repair and energise the body.

Leaving us feeling awake, fresh and invigorated. Better still the more we practise, the more energised we become and with that greater ability in dealing with stressful situations as and when they happen leading to not only preventing premature aging process but actually reducing it too.

Now wouldn’t that be nice!

The World Health Organisation recognises World Mental Health Day on 10 October every year. This year’s theme set by the World Federation for Mental Health is ‘Mental Health in an Unequal World. Recognising throughout the world, economic disparities go hand in hand with social and health inequalities

Mental health itself affects us all as it includes our emotional, psychological and social well-being. It affects how we think, feel, and act. It also helps determine how we handle stress, relate to others, and make choices. It’s important at every stage of life.

When our mental health is good, we feel confident regardless of our environment and have a genuinely positive outlook to life in general naturally affecting us in all that we do.

When we struggle with it we can feel agitated, frustrated, have extreme mood swings and can feel helpless. Which is likely to lead to withdrawal from friends and activities. Tiredness, low energy and poor sleep are also associated. As too, excessive drinking, smoking and other recreational drugs.

It can be addressed by talking about our thoughts and feelings (with a therapist if need be) and being comfortable with them rather than attempting to suppress them. Meditation practises can help greatly with this.

Other things we can do is keep active, follow a healthy diet with moderate to no alcohol consumption. Spending time with friends, taking regular breaks and doing something you like such as a hobby can also put a smile on one’s face.

Being realistic we are all going to be affected by this negatively at some stage in our life. So prepare for it, understand it and start incorporating preventative measures in order to minimise its effect when it does happen.

Afterall, it’s not as if connecting with friends, doing something you enjoy and exploring the mind is a chore . It is actually life evolving and can be damn good fun!!

For more information on upcoming events including courses on Transcendental Meditation please contact me directly at hello@andreberrymeditation.co.uk

Originally the term Burnout was used as a time when a rocket or jet has finished all of its fuel and stops operating.  Unfortunately, nowadays it’s used to describe an occupational mental health condition.

It is a state of emotional, physical, and mental exhaustion caused by excessive and prolonged stress. It occurs when we feel overwhelmed, emotionally drained and unable to meet constant demands 

The World Health Organisation has officially declared it as a workplace condition and in the US a recent study suggests as much as 76% employees are currently experiencing it.  It is also worth pointing out that people caring for children and parents can also suffer.

The unfortunate reality is, the more we push ourselves the more likely we are to experience it and it’s not going to go away unless we learn to be with it or better still put in preventive measures to reduce the likelihood of it from happening in the first place. 

It’s a lesson that I learnt 12 years ago whilst constantly working to tight deadlines, taking onboard new responsibilities and enjoying the rewards of my successes a little too much. Eventually, leaving me in a deep dark and depressive state enhanced further by the loss of my father.   

Knowing this needed to be addressed rather than suppressed I looked to use Meditation to explore this sense of overwhelm.  Personally not only have I not looked back.  But feel stronger and stronger with each passing day.

There are many other tools we can use and better still we can even use a combination of them all.  Regular daily exercise/yoga with the focus on regular rather than occasional trips to the Gym.  The cumulative gain is far greater and leads to creating a strong healthy habit.  

Take up a hobby which has no relation to work.  Maybe something fun, innocent where we don’t mind laughing at ourselves whilst also learning something new.      

Much has been talked about Sleep and rightfully so.  If it could be bottled up and sold it would be the ultimate wonder drug.  If you are one that struggles with sleep.  Check out Nick Littlehales and Matthew Walker both have excellent books on this topic.  

Also check out “a rocking night time routine”  A blog I did on just this topic.  It’s short and to the point.  Some would say its a bit hardcore but then so are then benefits of a good nights sleep.   

A balanced diet with the possible inclusion of fasting and simply have more fun finish of this list.  For what’s life without a little fun in it! 

Well there is one more and its a big one.  If you are unhappy and struggling, or if you are feeling you are heading towards that direction no matter how small, ask for help.  All too often we think we have to do it alone and we don’t, we really really don’t

 

https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/study-finds-76-of-us-employees-are-currently-experiencing-worker-burnout-301191279.html

https://andreberrymeditation.co.uk/a-rocking-night-time-routine/ 

For more information or to book upcoming course in Transcendental Meditation or to book a wellbeing talk for your office please contact hello@andreberrymeditation.co.uk

Previously we wrote about a morning routine and how by having one it’s starts the day in the best possible way.  Now we focus on an evening routine as it prepares us for the most important part of our day and that is when we sleep!

For without sleep nothing is possible and the less we have, the less capable we become.  With a good night’s sleep however our physical body is energised, healed and raring to go.  Throw in a meditation practise too and you are taking ourselves to a whole new level of potential

It does require a change in attitude and lifestyle.  But doesn’t everything, when we want to change?  I have come to love who I am in ways I never thought possible.  I wake up every day, excited to be alive and that feeling just gets stronger and stronger, regardless of what lies ahead.  

My evening routine is not quite as rigid as my morning one is in terms of timings and what I do.  Like many of us, my days vary and rarely end the same way.  That said, I am passionate about this routine so typically I try to do this 4-5 evenings a week.  

As I am an early riser, I’m bed as early as possible.  I love my sleep as I know the benefits.  Quality of sleep is of utmost importance.  So after 7pm I’m already starting to prepare for mine.

No television, social media or email after 7pm (he says at 7:30pm still writing this).  News too is a big no for me.  I want a great sleep and the news doesn’t provide that.  Also restriction of light to natural only (Easy during Summer not so at Winter)

I also use this time to tidy up (yes even washing dishes) whilst being mindful of any thoughts running through my mind.  Sometimes listening to an audiobook (nothing too intense) or just simply reflecting on my day.

I am a huge fan of journaling, once I realised there are no rules like correct punctuation, spelling or that it doesn’t have to make any sense.  I was into it straight away, it’s like emptying the mind with all that nonsense.  In fact, if any of you reading this struggle to sleep I would recommend this.  I love it!!

As someone who practices and teaches Transcendental Meditation I don’t actually practise it late at night.  This due to the transcendent quality in it that naturally releases stresses and whilst that is good it can leave you a little wired at night time.    

Instead I may do a body scan or some yoga postures in preparation for rest/sleep and by 9pm-9:30pm I am feeling so relaxed I can’t wait for bed.  This has been further helped by a lack of stimulants of alcohol or caffeine and by having my main meal between 12-2pm 

I am asleep within 5-10 minutes of hitting my pillow    

Now, there will be folk that question what fun is had by having such routines and that is their prerogative.  All I can say is I have immense fun.  Every single moment of the day and best thing is it just gets better and better! 

If you would like me to elaborate on any of the above please feel free to PM me. 

There is something about a morning routine that sets the tone for the day.  It’s no wonder so many successful people in the world have one and stick to it religiously.    

By the time mine has finished the feeling of expansion in Mind Body and Soul feels so good i repeat it 7 days a week and only take time of it if injured.  I love it!  I’m usually up between 4:00am and 4:30am and I start my day with a cold shower.  

There is something about going from the extreme of the warm cozy bed to that of the ice cold that pushes one’s boundaries.  

It has been often encouraged within the yogic community and I can see why.  It’s invigorating, refreshing and energising and by the time i’m out of it, any sleepiness I may have had, has now strangely disappeared and replaced with a glow that can’t help but put a smile upon one’s face.    

A gentle stretch next and if we have been taught a set of yoga postures in preparation for a meditation practice then this is a good time to do these.  If not, do approach a yoga teacher who will be able to prepare a set for you.       

Up next Meditation and why not first, before the Cold Shower?  Well simply, If we meditate directly after getting out of bed there is every chance we will still be sufficiently sleepy enough to want to fall asleep again. 

It’s one of the reasons why many give up their morning meditation practise.  They fall asleep so often during it they may as well just carried on sleeping.  Whereas once we have hit the cold, there ain’t no going back 

I am not going to go into the benefits of meditation here.  But if you are coming across this page for the first time.  All i’m going to say is that it works and please feel free to explore my social media and website to understand why it does.       

After meditating, I take some time out in the garden to study (we can always be better).  Right now i’m learning Spanish and for no other reason than I have always struggled with learning languages so thought I would start to exercise that part of the brain that is so resistant.

To finish a workout.  I do the simple and sinister daily.  It’s a kettlebell workout (that includes a good warm up) that leaves my body feeling intouch with the joys of everything else I’m feeling right there and then and the best part is, not a coffee in sight, it’s not even 7am and i’m raring to go!    

Next up a Bedtime routine that will lead you to a great night’s sleep 

13 years ago today (10/08/21) my father passed away. He was a giant of a man who had a huge influence on my life.
His loss was immense as we as a family had always been so very close.

A strong, physical and powerful presence only matched by his love for his family. A beautiful man, a wonderful teacher, a glorious soul.

As we attempted to heal ourselves from this challenging period.  Though we understood there were 5 or 7 stages of the grieving process and whilst I spoke of them often and understood the process, they certainly were not always as obvious as the books and internet suggest.

Thankfully back then, I also had my meditation practise. Though new to me at the time, offered a transcendent quality complimenting the support that I was receiving from the books and from those around me.

It quite naturally expanded my awareness and in doing tapped into my true healing potential.  So the pain, whilst there (and should be for we should never suppress) was less dominant giving me space to just be!

Ofcourse life continued, the first few months, years even, had difficult and uncomfortable moments, as I found myself being triggered.  It wasn’t so much the big occasions such as Birthday’s or Christmas’s.  Those we could prepare for.  But a song or a meal he was fond of was far more challenging.

At the same time I strangely found myself more capable in dealing with them as I felt support far greater than my body was usually aware and with that I gained great strength!

A strength that has grown each and every day since and as it evolves I realise his impact on me even now.  For my drive, my passion and desire to succeed whilst maybe expressed differently to him is very much influenced by him and for that I will always be grateful. I love you Dad!

https://www.healthline.com/health/stages-of-grief#background
https://www.healthline.com/health/stages-of-grief#7-stages

So we have been meditating for a few weeks and we are not sure whether our practise is working or not. 

Firstly it’s good to give ourselves a little time.  We have spent many years without a regular practise we can’t always expect change overnight.

That’s not to say there isn’t change going on, it’s just not always so obvious.  When we were younger we probably didn’t remember growing taller but we did.  Just like change in the mind, we don’t always recognise change, but it is happening.    

It’s always important not to judge the meditation by the quality of meditation itself, but by the quality of life.  Which makes sense why focus on a few minutes, a couple times a day meditating when we have 24 hours of living.  

Below are some tell-tale signs that our meditation practise is going well.  Again, don’t be expecting a sledge hammer of bliss smashing through every cell.  Invariably its far more subtle, but subtle doesn’t mean less powerful.   If in doubt, speak to your teacher who will be able to help.

We Feel Happier in Life

Life feels good and it didn’t need to be triggered by Happiness or Positive Affirmations.  There is just a natural feel good feeling that resonates within us and doesn’t seem to budge regardless of the environment we are in.        

Better Sleep

Sleep improves greatly as we find ourselves thinking less and less towards the end of the evening (providing the last thing you do isn’t watching the news) as we are drawn to the bedroom for a good night’s sleep.  We also notice when getting up we feel more rested than before as we recognise the benefits of a deep and peaceful sleep. 

Energy Levels Increased 

We feel more energised and capable of doing more at work as well as at home.  That said, we don’t always have to launch ourselves into further activity rather than enjoy the feeling as it runs throughout us.  It is incredibly healing whilst also makes us naturally very present! 

Less Stressed in Stressful Situations

Regardless to our practise, life will present us with challenge after challenge.  That’s simply the way it is.  But it’s how we deal with it that makes us who we are. We begin to feel more confident and capable in dealing with such them and whilst they can still be uncomfortable we become more aware of feelings deep within that it’s all ok and that’s just fine. 

For more information on upcoming events including courses on Transcendental Meditation please contact me directly at hello@andreberrymeditation.co.uk