Are you too busy to meditate? Can’t meditate? Do you wish you could meditate, but the thought of being away from your smartphone for a few minutes fills you with dread? As we get more and more distracted by social media and other interruptions, our attention span becomes shorter and we find it difficult to focus on any task. If only we were able to meditate for a few minutes a day! However, that requires sitting down in a lotus position or chanting a mantra, right? Actually, you can be mindful in different ways, some of which can be quite dynamic and you can easily fit them into your busy schedule.
Have you heard of Sophrology? Its practice is simple and doesn’t require you to be in a particular place or create special conditions like complete silence to benefit from it.
Sophrology, also called dynamic relaxation, works with consciousness and gradually teaches us to meditate, but it also uses our consciousness’ inherent power to positively influence body and mind and transform our daily life. Its practice is easy to implement: you can take a few minutes’ break during your working day, sit down at your desk and close your eyes. You don’t need to “empty your mind” from all thoughts, which can be quite difficult in the middle of your day, as the practice will naturally soothe you and help you reach a state of calm and serenity.
Mindfulness is a calm and neutral state in which you focus on the present moment. If your mind is overactive, a technique like Sophrology can help to bring a state of serenity very quickly. Through a step-by-step practice to include breathing, concentration, gentle movement and visualisation, the mind and body are both engaged through a series of exercises. Think about a Sophrology practice as taking on a journey to self-discovery. You start learning to let go of worries and tensions within your body, to be happily grounded in the present, feeling empowered towards your future. Sophrology can even help you transform your relationship with your past, so you can notice more of your resilience and use it to move forward.
Unlike meditation, which may require to allocate more time from your schedule for a full practice, you can take only 10 minutes out of your day to do Sophrology.
Beyond, the immediate effects of the practice on body and mind, practising over a few weeks can truly transform the way you feel and connect with the world around you.
It’s entirely up to you if you prefer to learn how to practise Sophrology either with one-to-one sessions or in a class, or both. You can set an objective during each session, for example to feel calmer, more confident or empowered. You may be facing a very specific challenge or a health issue, so you can use the session to get clarity of your situation and cultivate a specific resources that would help you. But you can also practice Sophrology to positively connect to yourself and be more mindful and happy. Your practitioner will give you a recording of the session to help you practise at home.
In Continental Europe, particularly in France, Belgium, Spain and Switzerland, Sophrology is widely available to help manage stress, for sportspeople preparing for a competition or for mothers-to-be to prepare for birth.
There is plenty of literature about Sophrology in French (700 titles in French on Amazon) and now a first practical guide in English, The Life-Changing Power of Sophrology, which aims to guide you through some simple meditations and give you an introduction to Sophrology as a practice and as a philosophy.
Sophrology can help you become more solutions-orientated and more open to new experiences as we connect with the natural dynamic force of consciousness. When we become too involved in negative thinking, we are not as open to new ideas or suggestions. We may focus too much on the problem instead of remaining open to welcome new possibilities. By calming the mind through a practice such as Sophrology, you allow the creative mind to explore alternatives and possibilities. Maybe you’ll get a “eureka!” moment, or maybe you’ll remember that someone else went through a similar situation and you decide to call them to ask how they solved the same problem you are facing. Answers and opportunities will start to come to the surface of your conscious mind as you go through your daily activities.
The solutions are already within you and Sophrology can assist you in opening up to them.
For more information on Sophrology www.be-sophro.co.uk.