People sometimes say that it is all in your mind. When it comes to cardiac health, there is some truth to that. A growing body of evidence increasingly suggests a link between a healthy heart and a mental state that focuses on the moment rather than worries about past or future challenges. This state is known as mindfulness and ways of evoking it are now becoming a significant part of therapy for those who are at risk of cardiac problems or are recovering from them.
In essence, research has shown a definite link between stress and heart health, which of course comes as little surprise. What is new in these undertakings, however, is the idea that stress is not just a matter of the external factors pressing down upon us but also of the way in which we react to those pressures. For most people who are under stress, their reaction is to dwell upon it even as they go about their everyday tasks. They think about it while they eat their breakfast or as they do a workout at the gym. The stress simply never disappears from their conscious mind and instead they push other aspects of their life onto a form of autopilot while they continue to gnaw away at the problem in their mind.
This continual focus leads to elevated blood pressure levels. Getting those levels down without the need for pharmaceutical means, particularly on a continuing basis, is the key to increasing heart health. One of the new ways in which this can be achieved is through the pursuit of mindfulness. As mentioned above, mindfulness is about focusing on the here and now and clearing your mind of any desire to worry away at other things.
Particularly in the case of people who already have a lot of stress in their lives, this is not such an easy task to accomplish. Some careers are inherently more stressful and it is no easy thing to turn off the worries that come with having such responsibilities. One of the best ways in which to pursue mindfulness is through the ancient disciplines of meditation.
Meditation is all about putting oneself into a state of complete and utter mindfulness that allows the ever-pressing forces of worry and doubt to be put aside. Being a careful and regular practitioner of mindfulness has been shown to have benefits apart from just lowering your blood pressure and taking the strain off of your heart.
The practical pursuit of mindfulness is a great way to boost your memory functions as well as enhance attentiveness. Both of these factors, in turn, are very definitely associated with enhanced job performance and also in job satisfaction and overall happiness. Yet even among those who have done the research, it is not an easy thing to make such a large departure from our everyday way of thinking and getting things done.
We live in an age where we are bombarded with information. It is not easy to turn it off or to disconnect ourselves from the need to absorb and act upon this information. In other words, in a time when mindfulness is increasingly important to both our mental and physical health, the circumstances of our lives make it very hard to pursue a lifestyle where we make a conscious effort to turn off all the constant external stimuli and look inward at ourselves.
To say that we should practice deep breathing techniques and focus on the mind-clearing rituals of meditation is completely at odds with modern society. We have no time, or so we think. But without making an effort at mindfulness, at helping our heart stay healthy, we may have a lot less time than we think.
As one of the nation’s leading providers of holter monitors, and cardiac monitoring equipment, we feel a responsibility to inform the public about new studies, developments and news that relates to the heart. If you have a topic regarding the heart that you would like us to feature in our blog,
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