Mindbody

Download the app

The MINDBODY app

Fitness memberships, workout classes, wellness services, beauty appointments and more.

Install
Meditation in Nature
Local
Published Wednesday May 22, 2019 by Lydia Cardona

6 Meditation Myths, Busted

Meditation
Personal Growth

With the stresses and strains of everyday life, finding time to unwind can seem almost impossible. In fact, the Wellness Index from Mindbody found that downtime takes a back seat for many of us— with the UK getting fewer than nine hours of headspace per week and one in five people stating that they are “not content” with the state of their current mental health.

“While we might feel that we don’t have time to meditate (or we’re intimidated because we don’t know how), the reality is that everyone can find some time for mindfulness through meditation,” says Charlotte Newton, Senior Manager EMEA Marketing. “What’s more, it’s not all about mantras, lotus positions and long periods of concentration—it can be super simple and there’s a style that can work for anyone. “
 
We've put together a no-nonsense, myth-busting meditation guide for first-timers!

Meditation comes in many forms.

Any activity that gets you to focus and allows the subconscious to let go can be meditative, like colouring, drawing, or even cooking! Illustrator and keen yogi Kate Phillipson launched Yoga Life Drawing to fuse her two passions: yoga and art.  She explains that drawing, like yoga, is a moving meditation and a great way to unlock creativity. Try tapping into this type of meditation with Kate, who will be hosting Yoga Life Drawing workshops this month!

1
Meditation comes in many forms.

Any activity that gets you to focus and allows the subconscious to let go can be meditative, like colouring, drawing, or even cooking! Illustrator and keen yogi Kate Phillipson launched Yoga Life Drawing to fuse her two passions: yoga and art.  She explains that drawing, like yoga, is a moving meditation and a great way to unlock creativity. Try tapping into this type of meditation with Kate, who will be hosting Yoga Life Drawing workshops this month!

You don’t have to sit in a cross-legged position.

Meditation is about being comfortable, so if this means you are most relaxed propped up or sat on a cushion, then so be it. The traditional cross-legged Lotus Position is considered the best pose for meditation, as it places all the primary Chakra energy centres in alignment, making spiritual perception and operation easier. However, it isn’t a necessary meditative position and isn’t accessible to everyone (it requires open hips and a lot of practice). So, instead of battling with this particular pose, find peace in a comfier position and make use of tools, like a yoga block, blanket, or meditation cushion.

2
You don’t have to sit in a cross-legged position.

Meditation is about being comfortable, so if this means you are most relaxed propped up or sat on a cushion, then so be it. The traditional cross-legged Lotus Position is considered the best pose for meditation, as it places all the primary Chakra energy centres in alignment, making spiritual perception and operation easier. However, it isn’t a necessary meditative position and isn’t accessible to everyone (it requires open hips and a lot of practice). So, instead of battling with this particular pose, find peace in a comfier position and make use of tools, like a yoga block, blanket, or meditation cushion.

Meditation doesn’t have to take years of dedicated practise.

Meditation isn’t about achieving total perfection. Like anything, regular practise helps you to improve and means you’ll learn more, but the benefits of meditation can be almost immediate. A study led by Harvard University found that as little as eight weeks of meditation helped people experience decreased anxiety and improved stress regulation. With Mindbody’s Wellness Index revealing that 24% of U.K. adults are ‘always’ or ‘regularly’ stressed/anxious daily, research like this is promising.

“At the end of every day take five minutes to reflect, think about the day and what made you happy; whether it was a beautiful sunrise, a great workout, or dinner with your family,” says Catie Miller, founder of Xtend Barre. “ Remember those things and be grateful for them.”

3
Meditation doesn’t have to take years of dedicated practise.

Meditation isn’t about achieving total perfection. Like anything, regular practise helps you to improve and means you’ll learn more, but the benefits of meditation can be almost immediate. A study led by Harvard University found that as little as eight weeks of meditation helped people experience decreased anxiety and improved stress regulation. With Mindbody’s Wellness Index revealing that 24% of U.K. adults are ‘always’ or ‘regularly’ stressed/anxious daily, research like this is promising.

“At the end of every day take five minutes to reflect, think about the day and what made you happy; whether it was a beautiful sunrise, a great workout, or dinner with your family,” says Catie Miller, founder of Xtend Barre. “ Remember those things and be grateful for them.”

You can meditate anywhere.

It’s a common misconception that you need to create a sacred and special environment to meditate effectively. Whether it’s at your desk, in the supermarket or on the tube, you can observe and focus on the breath to feel the immediate effects of meditation anywhere. Whilst it’s best to meditate in a clean and clutter-free environment, if you feel your emotions start to get on top of you, pay attention to your breathing for five minutes and focus on it entering and leaving your body.

4
You can meditate anywhere.

It’s a common misconception that you need to create a sacred and special environment to meditate effectively. Whether it’s at your desk, in the supermarket or on the tube, you can observe and focus on the breath to feel the immediate effects of meditation anywhere. Whilst it’s best to meditate in a clean and clutter-free environment, if you feel your emotions start to get on top of you, pay attention to your breathing for five minutes and focus on it entering and leaving your body.

You don’t have to ban distractions—including technology—when you practise.

Many apps and online programs have actually helped bring meditation into the mainstream; technology like Muse and apps such as Headspace have guided users through focused meditation and can be a practical way to find your zen. If you find you are distracted by something in the room, don’t rush to block it out. Simply acknowledge the distraction before bringing your attention back to the breath. If you try and eliminate every single thought that pops into your head, you’ll just end up frustrated.

5
You don’t have to ban distractions—including technology—when you practise.

Many apps and online programs have actually helped bring meditation into the mainstream; technology like Muse and apps such as Headspace have guided users through focused meditation and can be a practical way to find your zen. If you find you are distracted by something in the room, don’t rush to block it out. Simply acknowledge the distraction before bringing your attention back to the breath. If you try and eliminate every single thought that pops into your head, you’ll just end up frustrated.

If you think you don’t have time to meditate, think again!

With common benefits including improved concentration and decreased blood pressure, meditation is definitely worth your time—as limited as it may be. Even just five minutes in the morning can be enough to set you up for a more productive and positive day. Focusing on the present moment also means that you’re not dwelling on the past or worrying about the future, so you can focus on the ‘right now’ and make the most of your day.

“I make time to move and have a daily yoga practise. Even if it’s just five minutes of sun salutations on a hotel room floor at 5 am before a busy day,”  says Leon Taylor, yoga teacher, mentor, and Olympic medallist. “Keeping my morning routine consistent keeps me grounded when things are busy and challenging.”

Want to dive deeper into your practice? Download the Mindbody app to explore meditation classes near you! 

6
If you think you don’t have time to meditate, think again!

With common benefits including improved concentration and decreased blood pressure, meditation is definitely worth your time—as limited as it may be. Even just five minutes in the morning can be enough to set you up for a more productive and positive day. Focusing on the present moment also means that you’re not dwelling on the past or worrying about the future, so you can focus on the ‘right now’ and make the most of your day.

“I make time to move and have a daily yoga practise. Even if it’s just five minutes of sun salutations on a hotel room floor at 5 am before a busy day,”  says Leon Taylor, yoga teacher, mentor, and Olympic medallist. “Keeping my morning routine consistent keeps me grounded when things are busy and challenging.”

Want to dive deeper into your practice? Download the Mindbody app to explore meditation classes near you! 

Lydia Cardona
Written by
Lydia Cardona
PR and Content Specialist, EMEA Marketing
About the author
A self-confessed exercise and sports junkie, Lydia made the transition from fashion to wellness, handling media relations in the U.K. In her spare time, you'll most likely find her hitting up a MINDBODY studio, shopping for houseplants, or walking the family Pomchi.
what is wellness
Wellness
Published Wednesday Oct 06, 2021 by Denise Prichard

What is Wellness?

Expert Advice
Wellness

To say the last year and a half was tough would be an understatement. In fact, it will probably go down as one of the most difficult times for our modern generation. In one of the many social polls we conducted during the pandemic, some of you described this time as a sheer “dumpster fire” or “like stepping on a Lego.” And to be honest, I couldn’t agree more.

Luckily, we’ve been able to get back to some form of normalcy in our lives and wellness routines over the last several months. As vaccines became available to the public, wellness businesses welcomed fitness fanatics, haircut seekers, and massage lovers back to in-person wellness experiences. And thank goodness for that—my roots and horrible posture from working from my bed were both getting wildly out of control. This girl needed a good massage and cupping session stat.

If there’s one thing we learned from the pandemic, it’s that our wellness routines are as personal as they are important. During shelter-at-home, those routines looked a bit different. For many, it meant taking a new approach to the “typical” wellness services we count on—I’m looking at you DIY haircuts, at-home waxing sessions (ouch!), and virtual swerking classes.

Now that we can leave our humble abodes to take advantage of in-person experiences again, the word “wellness” has seemingly taken on a new meaning.

Recently, we conducted another one of our famous social polls to see what wellness means to you, our Mindbody community, now that we're slowly but surely getting back to our regularly scheduled programming. We also tapped some of our most influential Mindbody business owners about the ever-evolving wellness landscape.

Here’s what you all had to say.

Wellness is more important to you than ever

According to our annual Mindbody Wellness Index, 60% of Americans say they’re more focused on their health and wellness since COVID. Consumers are now realizing they need to take greater care of themselves to optimize and preserve their health. When we asked you on Instagram how important wellness is, a whopping 98% said it was more important than ever. When it comes to how you’re practicing wellness, though, the answers were all over the board. Many of you pointed to journaling, practicing breathwork, and daily workout routines (cycling and yoga topped the list) as being the activities that help you keep your chill throughout the week.

I’m also happy to report that over 50% said you tend to feel more blessed than stressed on a daily basis—which is more than likely a big improvement. Let’s be honest, a year ago I would’ve bet a billion dollars that 99.9% of us knew no other feeling than anxiety—am I right? But even with the stress in our lives dwindling, many of you are still experiencing burnout at the end of a long work week (guilty!). But instead of succumbing to a bottle of wine for relief (please, that was so 2020), you’re unwinding by going to your favorite workout classes—with hot yoga, barre, and Pilates as your faves.

What wellness means to the pros

Let’s be honest, we should credit the business owners in this space for helping us reignite our spark when it comes to our wellness routines, right? Thanks to them, we’ve been inspired to prioritize the activities that help us feel our best. In turn, we thought it’d be interesting to learn what wellness means to them—and how that definition has changed over the past eighteen months.

Here’s what they had to say.

“Wellness is living in balance—mind, body, spirit. Highs and lows. It all ebbs and flows and we can navigate it a bit better when we take time to move, breath and remember who we are, and how we are connected to this big, beautiful world.” - Jess Pierno, Founder, Owner, and Chief Inspiration Officer of Yoga Heights

“Wellness is a true balancing of the mental, physical, and spiritual. It has definitely evolved over the years for me—from something that I just thought was about exercising and eating a healthy diet—to also incorporating balancing and healing internally and spiritually.” - Stefanie Patterson, Owner, Indianapolis Salt Cave and Halotherapy Center

“My sense of wellness has evolved from staying healthy and motivated, mind/body/spirit... to being more gentle with myself, less demanding. Accepting my limitations, taking time for resting, and gaining real clarity about what's important. I care less about what people think of me—difficult as a performer and as a business owner with so many demands on me—and more about getting quiet and tapping into the divine source inside of me that helps me discern my next move. In this way, I know my motives are as pure as possible and I'm not getting distracted—not that I don't make mistakes! Those are necessary, that's how we learn!” - Johanna Krynytzky, Owner, Hip Expressions Belly Dance Studio

“My studio name reminds us that we are constantly evolving. The past 18 months have certainly shown us that! Wellness to me means doing your best on any given day to make sure that you are taking care of yourself as best you can. It leads to resilience. Diet, exercise, sleep, a sense of community, and some form of faith. It all matters. Setbacks happen all the time, and every day is a chance to start again. We strive to be 'cheerleaders' for our clients when we sense that things are coming out of balance in their lives. So many have been with us for 18 years and are friends—they are our community and we all watch out for each other.” - Mo Wolfe, Owner and Founder, Evolution Pilates

Putting wellness into action

I think we can all agree that there isn’t one true definition of wellness anymore. To some of us, it means getting that hot yoga sesh in daily, and to others, it means carving out time to treat ourselves to a massage or manicure. As long as you’re actively pursuing wellness—whatever that means to you—you're on the right track.

Our MO has always been about connecting the world to wellness—a term that's seen a lot of change lately. Whether you’re fully embracing the in-person experience or still delighted by the convenience of practicing at-home wellness, the Mindbody app makes it easy for you to book experiences that help you feel like YOU again.

denise prichard
Written by
Denise Prichard
Senior Marketing Content Specialist
About the author
Denise Prichard is a certified yoga instructor (RYT-200) and an experienced content marketing professional with a penchant for writing compelling copy within the health, wellness and beauty industries. When she isn't writing or editing, you can find her teaching yoga classes, at a spin class or hanging out with her rescue pups.