When we're stressed, frazzled, or overwhelmed -- whether it be from an all-nighter in the library, a fight with a good friend, or one of the many concerns that create our daily stress-fest -- our mental health can often fall by the wayside.

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And it's easy to underestimate the power of our mental health, especially in a culture where stress almost feels encouraged.

Because if you're not stressed, you sometimes don't feel like you're working hard enough.

It can even get competitive -- who's the most stressed, who consistently has no time to relax, who's always on the grind?

These are the people we look up to because we view out-of-control stress as a necessary part of reaching our goals, but I'm here to tell you: It's not.

I'd even argue that finding your balance mentally -- which is a personal journey and looks different individually -- is the key to sustainable success in the long-term.

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Everyone gets stressed, and it's natural to do so. But when it starts to dictate your life and prevents you from feeling happy and fulfilled, and sends you out of balance,

It's time to make a change. Keep reading to see how starting a daily meditation practice can help you find your balance.

❀ Goals of meditation

Meditation seeks to calm your mind, increase self-awareness, and help you find your balance again.

Inner peace isn't just a luxury for people who can afford massages and spa days -- although those certainly don't hurt!

All you need is 20 minutes and a quiet spot.

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It's attainable for everyone, and it has the ability to change your outlook on life, increase inner peace, and improve your relationships with others and yourself.

❀ Here are five ways daily meditation can improve your well being:

❀ Improves concentration

I've found that since I've started meditation, I'm able to focus on my work, my writing, and be in the moment (where I used to be on my phone or I'd let things from the other day bother me, etc.) when I'm spending time with friends and family.

❀ Increases self awareness

You start to recognize the ways in which you're getting in the way of your own happiness.

In most situations, I've realized it's a change in perspective that's needed, not the situation itself.

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Because sometimes the situation is out of your control, and that shift in perspective is all you have.

You can't control other people's actions, but you can control your response and whether you choose to hold grudges or hold onto negative feelings. Once you let go of those things, life starts to feel lighter.

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❀ Increases acceptance

I've learned to focus on the blessings I do have, rather than wishing one thing or another had turned out differently.

A great way to keep track of this is with a gratitude journal!

List three things you're grateful for every day, and you'll start to see more blessings in your every day life than you can count.

❀ Increases overall happiness

Since it's a practice that's focused on stress relief and self-reflection, meditation keeps your brain healthy. The more you meditate, the more signals that are sent to the part of your brain responsible for positive thoughts and emotions.

❀ Physical health benefits

Last but not least, daily meditation can improve your physical health too!

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Making a habit of daily meditation can improve persistent sleep problems, lower blood pressure, increase your overall energy, improve flexibility and balance, and has even been shown to improve chronic health issues.

Thanks for reading!

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Until next time,

Natasha