As we change seasons I’m finding myself hitting the reset button. I’ve dubbed this year the year of the brain because I’ve been feeling so wrapped up in the barrage of information coming at me that I’ve been seeking ways to achieve calm and clear thinking. Through a variety of changes to my routine I’ve been able to make great strides. For one thing, I haven’t been sick in 7 months and for the most part I’m sleeping infinitely better. The creative juices are flowing more than ever and my hope is that this new way of approaching my health and wellness will serve me well in the years to come. The first step in the journey towards a stress-free creative state of mind was picking up meditation. I began using Smiling Mind. It’s an app out of Australia with basic foundational meditations. With just 5-10 min a day I was noticing my ability to pause myself in the middle of a stressful moment was becoming fairly automated. The second thing I did was to challenge my body and my mind. I picked up hot yoga back in April and try to go at least twice a week. It has been such a wonderful way to find focus and build strength. During the 60-90 min sessions I have no other choice but to work on calming the mind. When I leave class I feel refreshed and energized in a way I haven’t experienced elsewhere. I highly recommend it for anyone who wants to find a little balance between the mind and body. The latest step in this journey has been the discovery of another meditation app, Headspace. It’s honestly, amazing. I am so impressed with everything about it. It’s a beautifully designed and user-friendly app that has tracking, mindful reminders throughout the day, and of course a library of guided meditations to help you get a better handle on your mental health. There are even animations (like the one posted here) to help you better understand how your mind operates. In addition to the foundational meditations there are also specialty series to really round out your wellness journey. There is even a series on creativity! There are encouraging prompts both in the app and over email that help keep you on the path and push you to continue putting the time and effort in. With all these new tools, I’m feeling really inspired and the way I see it every little bit helps me be lighter, more focused, and more open for creativity in my life.