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Elisa Goldstein, Ph.D.Elisha Goldstein, Ph.D.
A blog about mindfulness, stress-reduction, psychotherapy and mental health.

Stay in Shape in 5 Minutes a Day

Elisha Goldstein, Ph.D. Updated: Oct 13th 2011

walkerOkay, okay you got me the title was meant to get your attention, but there’s a grain of truth to it. I’m not promoting that you only exercise for 5 minutes a day, but I am saying that many of us overlook healthy things we can do for ourselves because we simply think they’ll take more time (or energy) than we really have.

In my experience, 5 minutes a day can truly make a difference, here’s how.

Let’s say you haven’t been exercising in a while and you were asked if you had 5 minutes a day to exercise, what would you say? Some might reactively say no, but most of us might say, “If I really looked, yes I could probably find 5 minutes a day to exercise.” So the program begins and you start with 5 minutes of exercise that might be 5 minutes of jumping jacks, pushups and sit ups. After a while, my guess is that it won’t be enough and you’ll want to do more. This is called the getting the engines moving effect.

When we’re looking at the mountain our motivation is naturally low. We don’t believe we can climb it, that’s why we have markers up the mountain so we know we can get to the 1st in one mile and we focus on that.

Here we are with the agenda now to just focus on 5 minutes. Think for a moment, what could you do that is healthy, fun, stress reducting or enlivening in 5 minutes a day?

  • Learn to play guitar
  • Learn a new language
  • Exercise
  • Yoga
  • Reclaim intimacy by giving a 5 minute hug
  • Meditation
  • Send an email of gratitude
  • Make a gratitude list
  • Do nothing

We can all learn from one another, what would you do if you realized you can make some good changes in just 5 minutes a day?

Let us know, share your thoughts, questions and stories below. Your interaction creates a living wisdom we can all benefit from.

Elisha Goldstein, Ph.D.

Elisha Goldstein, Ph.D. is a clinical psychologist in private practice in West Los Angeles and is author of the upcoming book The Now Effect, co-author of A Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Workbook, Foreword by Jon Kabat-Zinn, author of the Mindful Solutions audio series, and the Mindfulness at Work™ program currently being adopted in multiple multinational corporations.

Check out Dr. Goldstein's acclaimed CD's on Mindful Solutions for Stress, Anxiety, and Depression, Mindful Solutions for Addiction and RelapsePrevention, and Mindful Solutions for Success and Stress Reduction at Work. -- "They are so relevant, I have marked them as one of my favorites on a handout I give to all new clients" ~ Psychiatrist.

If you're wanting to integrate more mindfulness into your daily life, sign up for his Mindful Living Twitter Feed. Dr. Goldstein is also available for private psychotherapy.

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