The week's theme is how meditation can help to reduce stress and restore calm. Recent scientific research has shown that even just after five days of meditating for 20 minutes a day, people have measurably less anxiety and lower levels of the stress hormone cortisol. The practice of meditation helps us to step out of the "fight, flight or freeze" mode into our "rest and digest" mode, which in turn helps to reverse the body's stress response and lower both cortisol and adrenaline. 

With gratitude, the practices this week come from BreathWorks founder Vidyamala Burch and from The Meditation Room. 

The Compassionate Breath practice

https://soundcloud.com/breathworks-mindfulness/mindfulness-for-women-track-4-compassionate-breathing-anchor/s-5V14l [With thanks to Vidyamala Burch]

Sound Meditation - Ocean Waves

http://meditationroom.org/free-nature-sounds/ocean-waves-audio/  [With thanks to www.meditationroom.org]

Articles

This month, Mindful online shares an article entitled "How to Fight Stress with Empathy" by Arthur Ciaramicoli. He urges the practice of empathetic listening to reduce stress. His article can be found here.

In a second Mindful article, the authors Eric Langshur and Nate Klemp share the mindfulness technique of "Notice, Shift and Rewire" to master the habit of becoming more present to each moment, helping in turn to combat the effects of stress. To read "How to Notice, Shift and Rewire Your Brain", click here.