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Reign in Scattered Thoughts Through MEDITATION

Time is our most precious commodity. Most of us wish we had more time to do more things. Even though we all have the same 24 hours per day, some people seem to always be in a hurry and have no time for anything, while others are more relaxed, grounded and have the ability to make time for what is important to them. Some people put more energy and effort in planning a vacation than they do in the rest of their lives.

Our schedule can negatively affect our health if we stay in our heads, making us scatter-brained. There is a difference between having a busy schedule and being absorbed in thoughts all day long, versus being 100 percent present, moment-tomoment. Most of us spend all day in our heads, meaning that if one has a busy day, but also a meeting that may cause anxiousness, the meeting weighs heavy on the mind, and one ends up subconsciously thinking about the meeting and are not in the present moment. Or a mom of three young kids is trying to keep tabs on what each of them are doing, while trying to tackle a list of things to get done that day. I am sure many of us have experienced trying to converse with someone, and it’s obvious they are distracted and not present. This is what “being in your head” means. This is okay and necessary for certain situations, but it should only be transient.

Unconsciously “being in your head” and not present causes the body to burn more energy in order to keep up with the demand the brain is asking of it. This will eventually exhaust the body and cause health challenges. How does the body combat the mental stress of not being present? Like it does with any other stress placed upon it—nutrition. The more one is not present and is scatter-brained, the more nutrition the body requires to deal with this mental disorganization. Now, throw a poor diet and weak digestion into this mix, and the body will become stressed and nutritionally out of balance. Nutritional deficits cause muscle contraction in the spine, subluxations, postural deviations and organ dysfunction, causing health challenges.

Not having control over thoughts or consistently not being present is just as much of a disease as having diabetes or cancer. The mind is like a muscle that we have to strengthen. Just like we exercise our physical bodies with cardio and weights, we need to exercise our minds, too. Start by observing the present moments throughout the day. If you are not present, focus on breathing and other senses. Feel breath while inhaling and exhaling, and observe smells in the air, feel the ground while walking, or the chair where you’re seated. Focus on the senses to return back to the present moment.

Meditation is an excellent way to strengthen the mind and gain control of thoughts. Meditation is the cardio and weights for the mind. Life can be stressful, and some things are unavoidable because we have no control over them. It is not what happens to us that matters, it’s how we handle it. What the mind says consciously or unconsciously, the body has to respond. It is possible to gain control over thoughts and learn to be present, moment-tomoment, all day long. Mastering these two skills can change one’s life and health for the better.

Dr. Keith Giaquinto is an internal health specialist located at 300 E. Ogden Ave., Naperville. For more information, call 630-246- 2627 or visit DrKeithGiaquinto.com.

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