Success? Yes, but …

I am now several days into meditating for ten minutes each morning soon followed by a short, cardio-oriented weights regiment. While useful in their own right, I am employing these practices to reduce the amount of Anxiety I feel with my new (lower) dosage of a “chill pill.

Success? Yes, but …

First, the good news: my mornings are less Anxiety-filled. Rather than having mid-level Anxiety from when I wake up until when my mid-morning meds kick in (i.e. 5 am – 11 am), thus far into the routine, I am only experiencing mid-level Anxiety and agitation from 9 am to 11 am. Four hours of peace is a good thing. Perhaps I could also meditate for 5 minutes when I get into work, before anyone else makes it into the office. Maybe that would rid me of the 9 am – 11 am challenges.

Now the bad news: I am waking up at 2 am or 3 am several mornings and am not able to fall back asleep. This was not a problem at the prior dosage of my “chill pill;” I was a super sleeper right up until 5 am. At least I’m not awake with my mind racing and Anxiety-filled. I just can’t sleep. So, I’ve got this to figure my way out of now.

(Note to self: Why does the Anxiety wait until 5 am to kick in?)

But back to the good news … I’m terrible at meditating. Wait, that’s not the good news, Michael. What is good news is that I’ve been trying this meditation app called “Headspace.” A number of people in my life have recommended I give it a try; it helps them or someone they know. Eight days in, I can say it’s helping me too. (I’ll write more about the Headspace in a future post.)

Here’s just a bit more about my morning routine: I don on some headphones and do a ten minute meditation practice. The narration of the app has helped me figure out how to do controlled breathing while not letting thoughts and feelings get too much in the way of just “being” during the practice. After the ten minutes my head feels lighter and my forehead feels extremely relaxed. Not long after that I do some cardio-weights work, which involves even more controlled breathing and just “being” as I count my reps. I think because I’m building on the meditation with the controlled breathing and mindless counting, afterwards my head feels lighter still and my forehead feels even more relaxed. As I noted earlier, the associated calmness sticks with me until 9 am, so I am at least getting a great start for my day.

Now to erase those two hours of Anxiety. More to come …

p.s.:  Headspace starts with a free trial.  After ten sessions, it is a paid-subscription service.