The first step of Inner Leadership is to centre and ground ourselves. Once we have reconnected deeply with who we are and what matters most to us, we will respond better to whatever new situation or event is demanding our attention.
Two ways to achieve this deeper connection with ourselves are meditation and exercise. (A third is creativity.)
Now a new study, published in Frontiers in Immunology, has found that yoga, Qi Gong, and Tai Chi, as well as simple mindfulness practices such as meditation and breathing exercises, can reverse stress-related changes in genes linked to poor health and depression.
Sitting meditation is quite different than yoga or Tai Chi, yet all of these activities — when practiced regularly — seem to decrease the activity of genes involved in inflammation that can impair both physical and mental health.
Not only that but, through a process known as ‘epigenetics’, they can reverse changes caused by stress and other lifestyle factors which can turn certain genes on and off, affecting our risk of disease, how long we live, and what genes we pass on to our children.
You can read more about this in Time Magazine here.
And related studies have also shown that simply living in line with our purpose can have similar effects on our genes.
Meditation, yoga, and mindfulness can change your genes. They can also make you a better, more grounded leader.