The Mind That Sits Still
Teens face many difficulties in day-to-day life, socially, with parents and friends, and at school. In general, there are many expectations that teens try to live up to everyday, yet when they are unsuccessful in meeting an expectation, they often have a hard time coping with it. The stress begins to build up, leaving the teens agitated and unable to concentrate on one thing; this was the case for me. I always felt pressured to perform exceptionally everyday and meet high standards. The truth is no one is perfect and I was and still am far from it. I did know that I could make a change to make myself feel better so when trying to perform my best in situations, I could make better decisions. I was ready to take matters into my own hands and feel better. To do this, I meditated, five minutes every morning. At first it seemed very awkward like I was forcing myself to sit still and it was painful. After two weeks I eased into it and looked forward to that time. Although I was in a weird state of concentrating and sleeping I stuck with it and started to concentrate on my breath (sounds crazy but it works) as a way to clear my mind. I concentrated on only one thing, my breathing. Focusing on just that for five minutes made every other worry and stressful thing in my life seem manageable. I continued to do this for more weeks and as the months went on I felt better and realized that not performing or being exceptional was okay. I realized I am doing the best I can, and my mind felt clear. As I continued to meditate, I realized that it was not only making me feel better mentally, but also physically. I didn’t feel like I needed to cope by eating sweets and unhealthy foods. Usually when I don’t mentally feel well I am drawn to ice cream, cookies, cakes. Yes, I always try to resist but sometimes it’s too hard. I have learned how to overcome this because I understand how unhealthy that food is. Surprisingly my cravings, for the most part, started to go away because mentally I felt so much better without it and felt that I didn’t need to eat unhealthy foods.
Once we learn how to cope with our bodies, which is different for everyone, we can then maximize our energy and learn how to live the best life possible. There are many situations that leave teens feeling stressed with irritated states of mind, but doing yoga can really help control the stress. I thought it was silly and would not help, but soon realized that it benefitted me in more ways than I would have thought.