Wellness Wednesday: Just Breathe

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For months and months, I weighed the costs and benefits of purchasing the latest Apple Watch. I did my research, watched videos, and conducted one-on-one interviews with Apple Watch owners. This may sound pretty outrageous, but if you know me, you know this is the type of homework I enjoy doing. I’m a list maker, a pro/con dependent who makes decisions once I feel comfortable and confident. Going through life this way may feel a bit unnecessary and even overwhelming, but I must admit combing through things with a fine-toothed comb has, ironically, made my life simpler and easier. Which brings me back to the Apple Watch. After mulling this investment over, because, let’s face it, purchasing anything from Apple is an investment, I chose to take the plunge and add to my growing collection of Apple products. Exactly one month in, and I couldn’t be more pleased with my decision for a number of reasons, and they all point to wellness.

Conveniently receiving and sending messages, emails, and phone calls without fumbling for my phone is obviously a huge plus, but what I love most about the Apple Watch is, again, its ironic ability to help me focus on my well-being. Who would have thought a little technological device strapped to your wrist would engage and center me, rather than distract me? Throughout the day and at, what seem to be the best times, one iOS10 update includes an app that will encourage you to stand up or take a walk when you’ve been sitting for too long. The best app by far, though, is called Breathe, where you focus on your breath and meditate for one or five minutes. When the app’s notification appears, you are prompted to “be still and bring attention to your breath.” Breathing intentionally, consciously, deeply, and slowly helps you reduce stress and anxiety, increase energy and immunity, and calms your mind.

In the busyness of life, it’s so easy to get lost in day-to-day operations and lose perspective and focus. At $269 (Series 1) and $369 (Series 2), the Apple Watch is a major investment, but its most recent iOS update forces you to take a break and be present. So, is it worth the cost? I’d say if you have the money, go for it, but if you don’t, you can practice intentional breathing and mindfulness on your own. There are a number of free Apple and Android-friendly apps you can download to your phone to engage you in the same way, so check them out below. Listen, whatever app you choose or don’t choose, be sure to take a moment out of your day to stop, meditate, and be. Trust me, you’ll thank me later!

Stop, Breathe, & Think

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