One of Mower Refreshed focuses is on Mental Fitness. As a third grader described mental fitness: “It’s being fit in your head.” In June, the Mental Fitness Goal Group hosted an event for county professionals to introduce TAKE 5, a no cost concept to intentionally respond to stress and anxiety and featured Dr. Amit Sood, MD from Mayo Clinic’s Complementary and Integrative Medicine Program as keynote speaker. The group realized early on that no one can remove stress from another person’s life but we can promote and support ideas that equip individuals to cope better with the stress: resulting in less negative health impacts.
TAKE 5 was developed by a variety of professionals from throughout the county coming together with the desire to create a common language in our schools, sports, workplaces, faith communities and homes that can be adapted by the individual in ways that make sense.
TAKE 5 means paying closer attention to how you respond to stress and replacing it with a positive, intentional response. TAKE 5 may be pausing 5 seconds before entering a meeting at work or before you enter your home after work. It could mean taking five deep breathes before speaking when experiencing conflict, making your words more kind and spoken with less intensity.
Walking 5 blocks or 5 miles, meditating on scripture for 5 minutes, blessing the next five people who drive by you, thinking of 5 people you are grateful for before getting out of bed each morning. Hear a siren from police or ambulance vehicle? Take 5 seconds to pray for the professionals who are responding to a crisis or telling your child five things you appreciate about them as a person a just a few examples of how simply we can use TAKE 5 each day.
Visit www.MowerRefreshed.org and click on the Mental Fitness icon. You’ll find a TAKE 5 document that gives more ideas on how to TAKE 5. More tools will be available such as a ten minute DVD that provides relaxing music and photography to use personally or in other settings to offer a TAKE 5 moment.
Participants at the June event developed a tool on how to use TAKE 5 in a variety of settings (home, community, work, school, individual living, and faith communities) and it will be available soon. Mental Fitness group members are available to meet with your group or organization to consider how to implement TAKE 5 and promote efforts in building resistance to stress that can improve productivity and enhance relationships.
Practicing TAKE 5 won’t remove stress or anxiety producing situations, those will certainly be a part of our lives. However, when we refocus on gratitude, calm, thankfulness or kindness a shift occurs in us. When we intentionally TAKE 5 we can slowly transform a conversation, a classroom, a family or possibly even a community.
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