Unsponsored: Get Out of Your Mind and Into Your Life Recommendation

Most people don’t realize the brain is just as good (or better) at muscle memory than any other muscle. The human brain learns by association, which is why we have a memory at all. The emotion we feel at any given moment is automatically associated with whatever is happening around us. This is the same reason why domesticated animals learn certain behaviors with sounds, treats, and other cues. When we have a bad experience, we associate feelings, objects, smells, sounds, colors…anything our brain can grab onto to remember the moment. This is how we develop interests, learn to fear things, stay in bad relationships, fall into addictions, and even stick with that new diet and gym membership. Although muscle memory is not the sole reason we have anxiety or depression, if you’re in a place where you are able to learn to control it, you can work hard to change your thoughts and behaviors.

If you are not in a good place, and you need the support of a therapist, medication, or if you simply need more time to work through something, don’t feel guilty. Your experience doesn’t need to be compared to everyone else’s. If you’re taking the time to read about mental health, you’re in the right place.

I would like to take the time to recommend this book. This post, and my review, is completely unsponsored. If you’re looking for answers on why people experience mental health issues (anxiety and depression - this book does not apply to other unrelated disorders), and how to accept and overcome them, stop everything you’re doing and read it. (As with every mental health post, I would like to disclose that I am not a counselor, and that my advice will not solve every problem.) I have learned a lot from reading this, and it has given me peace of mind that my experience is universal and that I am not going through it alone. If you’re reading this post, I hope it helps you too!

xo,

Victoria

Unsponsored: 72 Day Meditation Streak

Alright, folks. I’ve decided to do some unsponsored product posts. I have done sponsorships in the past, but when it comes to the subject of mental health, I want to keep that authenticity. That being said, I will share certain products with you that have helped me improve my life.

I’ve signed up for meditation apps in the past and thought they were okay…but I never really found one I was in love with, much less wanted to pay for. I decided to do a trial period for the Calm app, and I used it so much within those seven days that I decided to invest in the purchase. After all, when you break down the cost…it’s really only 1-2 doctor or counseling appointments that you would need to maintain your mental health, or get a prescription to alleviate symptoms.

I started by trial period 72 days ago, and my current meditation streak is 72 days. I cannot recommend this app enough! It includes daily guided meditations, soundscapes, sleep stories, ASMR, soothing music, nature sounds, guided meditations based on subjects for personal growth, relationships, anxiety, motivation, focus, self-care, emotions, etc…guided yoga, podcast style classes, guided breathing exercises, and more. Calm offers something for a variety of audiences - parents, children, students, employees - and pretty much anyone looking to improve some aspect of their life. The guided meditations offer assistance breathing, clearing the mind, and contemplating on a particular topic encouraging mindfulness and acceptance. Calm seems to be developing a more diverse narrator portfolio with time as it gains more popularity. The app currently only syncs with Google Fit and only offers English and German languages, but given the growing momentum of the company, I would imagine they will expand these options to include several languages as well as Apple and Fitbit users as well. The way I see it, the more we support them, the faster they will add these features.

So…how has it helped me in my daily life? I started by listening to one 12 minute guided meditation before bed every night. It helped me get to a relaxed physical state that I was unable to experience on my own. But that wasn’t enough for me to fall asleep some nights - so I started listening to sleep stories and soundscapes. I’m now at a point where I can’t and won’t fall asleep without the app. By clearing my head before dozing off, I’ve had less nightmares as well. My nights of insomnia and perpetually anxious night terrors are now fewer and fewer the longer I use this app.

For as long as I can remember, sleep has been a very negative experience for me. Everything about it made me anxious - not being able to fall asleep, nightmares, night sweats, constant disruption, feeling bad in the morning - and now I look forward to opening the app every night.

Have you tried Calm, or any other meditation app? Do you turn to YouTube for those features? How do you fall asleep? Let me know in the comments!

xo,

Victoria