How a week of trying to be mindful left me more stressed

first_imgIndependent 8 November 2017Family First Comment: The pushback continues – but apparently any opposition or critique will be ignored by Ministry of Education in NZ“There is a widespread belief that mindfulness meditation can only bring about benefits, that it has no potential for any adverse effects – and that’s simply not the case. There is emerging scientific evidence that it can be associated with stress, low mood and anxiety.” And, she adds, if you have a trauma history, for example, it is possible that mindfulness meditation may trigger low mood, flashbacks and negative emotions. I don’t have a trauma history, but I did feel more stressed. And I’m not a stressy person.”  But the article also points to another one by Dr Sarah McKay – neuroscientist, science communicator, founder of The Neuroscience Academy – and born in Christchurch!“Despite being well-versed in the theory and health claims, I’ve recently started to ‘come out’ as a meditation drop-out and skeptic.”Should mindfulness be used in schools as a one-size-fits-all run by people who aren’t professionally trained in it, especially when it may “trigger low mood, flashbacks and negative emotions”??Mindfulness. It’s been a buzzword for a few years.Studies have shown it can be as effective as antidepressants, make us more resilient and less stressed.People say that by “practising mindfulness” – for it is something you practise, don’t you know – you’ll become more focused, happier, thinner, funnier, cleverer and your snot will sparkle like glitter. (Maybe.)Everyone has been harping on about why we not only need to actively practice mindfulness every day, but we need to incorporate it into everything we do – adopting intuitive eating, for example, and always “being present.”Ever on the quest for self-improvement, I decided I should probably jump on the bandwagon (five years late, I accept), and give mindfulness ago.To do this, I downloaded a bunch of free mindfulness apps to my phone – there are tons out there, and it was a bit overwhelming from the start.Most of these apps are designed to ease you into mindfulness with introductory courses which seem to entail plugging in for five minutes a day and listening to someone with a soothing voice talk to you.It sounds pretty manageable, right?It wasn’t.READ MORE: meditation stress you out? Here’s what I do instead.Your Brain Health 25 February 2016 Others agree. Meditation isn’t a panacea.In the process of writing thinking about this post, I’ve been pleasantly surprised to find that there are a few others popping their hands up admitting that it doesn’t work for them either, and that there might even be a dark side to the current craze.Dawn Foster wrote a piece recently in the Guardian ‘Is mindfulness making us ill?’ describing her highly negative meditation experience:“I feel a rising panic and worry that I might pass out, my mind racing. Then we’re told to open our eyes and the feeling dissipates. I look around. No one else appears to have felt they were facing imminent death. What just happened?For days afterwards, I feel on edge. I have a permanent tension headache and I jump at the slightest unexpected noise. The fact that something seemingly benign, positive and hugely popular had such a profound effect has taken me by surprise.Even a year later, recalling the sensations and feelings I experienced in that room summons a resurgent wave of panic and tightness in my chest. Out of curiosity, I try the Headspace app, but the breathing exercises leave me with pins and needles in my face and a burgeoning terror. “Let your thoughts move wherever they please,” the app urges. I just want it to stop. And, as I discovered, I’m not the only person who doesn’t find mindfulness comforting.Foster is not alone. Authors Miguel Farias and Catherine Wikholm published a book last year called ‘The Buddha Pill‘ challenging (rightly so, in my personal experience) the claim meditation is a panacea. They present research on the often serious and negative outcomes of meditation — psychosis, breakdowns, and violent behaviours — that are seldom spoken of by meditation advocates and practitioners.Listening into a podcast by yogi and meditation practitioner Jonathan Fields, I heard great analogy from him of how mindfulness can harm when it is presented as an isolated practice.“Meditation cultivates awareness. It stills the water so you can see what’s underneath lying in the sand. But if you don’t like what you see, it doesn’t make it all better.“And, Wikholm has summarised the final chapter in a great piece for The Guardian, ‘Seven common myths about meditation’. She writes,Nevertheless, there is emerging scientific evidence from case studies, surveys of meditators’ experience and historical studies to show that meditation can be associated with stress, negative effects and mental health problems. For example, one study found that mindfulness meditation led to increased cortisol, a biological marker of stress, despite the fact that participants subjectively reported feeling less stressed.It’s definitely not just me!READ MORE: read more

JaVale McGee back with the Lakers after hospitalization

first_img Lakers practice early hoping to answer all questions Trail Blazers, Grizzlies advance to NBA play-in game; Suns, Spurs see playoff dreams dashed LOS ANGELES – JaVale McGee missed his fourth straight start for the Lakers on Sunday night, but he was in the Staples Center, broke huddle with the team at shootaround, and even did some pregame warm-ups.As it turns out, just being around the team was a huge step for McGee.A Yahoo Sports report broke the news that McGee was hospitalized for three days at UCLA Medical Center following the Lakers’ return from their four-game road trip, dealing with pneumonia. The Lakers had previously said that McGee was suffering from flu-like symptoms and a respiratory infection, but had not elaborated on the severity of McGee’s ailments.The Lakers said Sunday that he was cleared for basketball activities, but that his energy and conditioning was not where it needed to be. Still, his mere presence was a relief given the events of the last week. Lakers, Clippers schedules set for first round of NBA playoffs “I want it. You want guys that want to play,” Walton said. “Now it’s up to the doctors to decide whether or not he’s cleared to do that, which they’ve said he is, so now it will be an energy thing. But you want guys like that.”Related Articles AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREUCLA alum Kenny Clark signs four-year contract extension with Packers“Oh, it felt good, man,” McGee said to reporters shortly after the Lakers’ loss to the Grizzlies. “Just getting back to the routine. For the past, eight, nine days, my routine has been laying in bed. And that’s it. So it’s real refreshing.”McGee said he made up his own mind to go to the hospital after he got home and was given antibiotics. He also noted that he has asthma, which can complicate respiratory problems such as pneumonia.After his pregame working, McGee said he was “extremely winded,” but said he would commit to extra conditioning in the next few days to get his health back to where it was before he got sick.McGee hasn’t played since a Dec. 15 game in Charlotte, but he’s aiming for a return to the court Tuesday at Golden State, where he won two titles. Before the game, he will receive a ring for winning the 2018 NBA Finals. Said McGee of the game: “The whole time [when he was sick], that’s all I was thinking about.”Walton said he wasn’t concerned about McGee rushing himself back to play — far from it, in fact.center_img Trail Blazers beat Grizzlies in play-in, earn first-round series with the Lakers Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error Tyson Chandler also missed Sunday’s game with back spasms. Walton said the 36-year-old’s back started tightening up during Friday’s win over the Pelicans, and that Chandler couldn’t go through a normal pregame routine early on Sunday. Chandler was also spotted in the Lakers’ locker room prior to the game.Michael Beasley’s mother diesAfter a battle with illness, Michael Beasley’s mother, Fatima Smith, has died.The Lakers have missed the forward for most of the month as Beasley attended to his mother, granting him time off to visit her in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area. Beasley and Smith both came to the Lakers’ Dec. 16 game against the Washington Wizards, with Beasley briefly joining the team on the bench.Walton began his pregame comments with a personal sentiment for Beasley from the team.“ I just wanted to send our love, our thoughts and our prayers to Michael Beasley and his family,” Walton said. “They’re going through a tough time. But we’re thinking of you, we miss you and we love you.” How athletes protesting the national anthem has evolved over 17 years last_img read more

‘We made incredible mistakes’: Mourinho fumes

first_imgRomelu Lukaku got one back, but Pascal Gross’s penalty capitalised on more poor United defending to send Brighton into the interval with a 3-1 lead.United rarely looked like mounting a fightback and Paul Pogba’s penalty with virtually the last kick of the game came way too late.A shell-shocked Mourinho conceded United’s players had only themselves to blame for their first defeat of the Premier League season.“We were punished by the mistakes we made. For me that’s the story of the game. We made incredible mistakes in some crucial moments. Mistakes that killed us,” Mourinho said.“Especially that third goal – we expected to come at 2-1 with positivity – then the third goal killed us off in the second half. Our second goal came too late.“The week leading up was good and I expected the team collectively to be better. There are basic mistakes that makes almost an impossible mission to win the match.”Many of Mourinho’s stars, including World Cup winner Pogba, new signing Fred and French forward Anthony Martial, were anonymous for long periods, but the boss refused to criticise individuals.“I don’t want to go in that direction. I have to learn from my reality,” Mourinho said.“Last season when I was critical of my team and was debating openly of the performances I was criticised for being too open about my players.“I will be open when they are doing well. I cannot criticise the desire of my players.”0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today) 0Shares0000Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho shows his frustration in the defeat at Brighton © AFP / Glyn KIRKBRIGHTON, United Kingdom, Aug 19 – Jose Mourinho admitted Manchester United had paid the price for “incredible mistakes” in their dismal 3-2 defeat at Brighton on Sunday.Mourinho’s side were blown away on the south-coast as Brighton scored twice in two minutes thanks to goals from Glenn Murray and Shane Duffy midway through the first half.last_img read more