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While detox diets are popular for recalibrating your body and getting back on track physically, you should also consider doing the same for your mind. A mental cleanse can be a great way to find more fulfillment in your personal and spiritual relationships — and to help you feel more present and whole.
What Is a Mental Cleanse?
A mental cleanse is an exercise in clearing your mind to help you find better focus and balance in your life. It’s about taking a break from the day-to-day stressors, anxieties and distractions. Mental cleansing can include activities like deep breathing, stretching exercises and taking a break from electronic devices.
How Can a Mental Cleanse Make You Feel Whole?
In today’s society, you face many distractions and stressors: Constant news and social media feeds alone can keep your mind preoccupied and distracted from what matters most — building and maintaining relationships with your loved ones. A mental cleanse can help focus your body, mind and spirit to make deeper connections with your loved ones and your faith.
How to Do a Mental Cleanse
There’s no one-size-fits-all method when it comes to doing a mental cleanse to de-stress.
Explore a few of these approaches to see what works best for you.
Try Breathing Exercises
Focus on breathing more deeply and lengthening your breaths to connect your body, mind and spirit. Breathe deeply — in through your nose and out through your mouth — while focusing on your stomach rising and falling. You should notice your heart rate slowing down and feel your breath moving in and out of your body.
Once you feel grounded, you can also try lengthening your breaths by inhaling slowly through your nose, then exhaling slowly through your mouth for a few seconds longer than it took for you to inhale. These breathing exercises can be done for a long period or during short breaks in the middle of a busy day.
Stretching is a great way to reduce stress and clear your mind. Here are some easy stretches you can try:
- Calf Raises
- Shoulder Rolls
- Shoulder Shrugs
- Side Stretches
- Slow Neck Rolls
- Windmills (Swing Your Arms Gently From Side to Side)
Take a Break From Technology
Try spending a day (or even a couple hours) without looking at your phone, computer, tablet or television. Instead of looking at a screen, talk with someone in person or take some quiet time for reflection or prayer.
Turn Off the News
Reading headlines can fill us with anxiety and stress. During your mental cleanse, avoid the news and focus on another activity that’s more fulfilling.
Whether you walk around your neighborhood or take a long hike in the woods, try getting outside to clear your mind. While you’re outside, focus on your surroundings and the different sights, smells and sounds you experience.
Count Your Blessings
With the stresses of day-to-day life, we sometimes lose track of the positives. When you find yourself caught in a busy day or anxious moment, pause and think about what — and who — you’re grateful for.
Reset Your Mind, Restore Your Spirit
Incorporating a mental cleanse into your routine can help you feel more fulfilled, happy and connected with your loved ones and faith. While an occasional cleanse is certainly a step toward a healthier you, working up to it as a more frequent practice (daily is ideal) is recommended.
If you’re struggling to find a mental cleanse method that works for you, or feel overwhelmed with stress, make an appointment to talk with your health care provider. Take control of your mental health for your whole health.