Student life can offer ample freedom and a lot of responsibility. Navigating the ground between the two is what self discovery often looks like in our late teens and early twenties.
While there’s fun to be had, there’s also the stress of balancing heavy study and lecture schedules, learning how to care for yourself, and finding your way in a new, adult world.
How different might your student years have been if you had access to a practice like iRest Yoga Nidra Meditation?
The North Dakota State University Counseling Center provides one-hour meditation sessions for their students at 3 p.m. every Monday.
Their short article below, originally published on ndsuspectrum.com shares about the immediate benefits for students like reducing feelings of stress and overwhelm and fostering self-trust and confidence. It also highlights the lifelong benefits of learning practical, healthy tools for navigating life at a young age.
Meditation Mondays on Campus: The NDSU Counseling Center provides weekly meditation sessions using iRest
College can be a time of particular stress, pressure, adjustments, changes and competing demands. That’s why the North Dakota State University Counseling Center provides one hour meditation sessions for their students at 3 p.m. every Monday.
“For many years I have run various meditation groups at the Counseling Center at that time, and it seems to work well for many students, and is also practical with the office schedule,” Licensed Psychologist, Certified Mindfulness Meditation Teacher, and Level I iRest Teacher Ronni Arensberg said.
Each session involves a brief introduction to iRest and a guided meditation of approximately 30 minutes followed by a brief time for discussion or questions. Because the meeting is a drop-in group with no pre-registration, space is limited on a first-come, first-serve basis; face masks are also required.
“Learning skills to manage stress and anxiety can be extremely beneficial for college students,” said Arensberg. “Learning iRest meditation and developing an iRest practice during college offers helpful skills that can be of benefit throughout the rest of one’s life.”
iRest (Integrative Restoration) is a secular meditation practice based on the ancient tradition of Yoga Nidra and adapted to suit the conditions of modern life, according to their website. During iRest, people enter receptive states of deep relaxation and meditation, while remaining aware and alert.
“When practiced regularly, iRest enables you to meet each moment of your life with unwavering peace and wellbeing, no matter how challenging or difficult your situation,” said Arensberg. “It can help you stay connected to your inner peace despite everyday stress or life-altering events. iRest teaches tools that you can use throughout your lifetime to deal with difficult situations skillfully, and to develop a deep and secure sense of well-being.”
The iRest website states that the practice was developed by Dr. Richard Miller, a spiritual teacher, author, yogic scholar, researcher and clinical psychologist, who combined traditional yogic practice with Western psychology and neuroscience.
The simple steps of iRest, which have been tested in clinical trials, calm the nervous system, release stress, increase resiliency and restore a sense of balance and control, according to Dr. Richard Miller’s research.
iRest consists of 10 basic steps, so each meditation session will focus on a different step of iRest. According to Arensberg, the sessions do not need to be attended consecutively or in order.
“iRest is simple to learn and easy to practice,” said Arensberg.” It can be practiced by anyone, regardless of experience with meditation.”
Take five minutes to reduce your feelings of stress and enhance calm and focus with the iRest practice below.
If you know a student who can benefit, please share this article with them so they can understand the practical application in their lives and access over 80 free yoga nidra meditations on topics like anxiety, sleep, self compassion, and self love.
iRest for Students and Beyond: What’s Your Role?
iRest Yoga Nidra Meditation is currently taught and used across myriad demographics and industries. This practice is suitable and adaptable for everyone from young children to senior citizens.
It’s used in corporate settings for reducing stress, increasing effectiveness, and teaching people how to better care for their mental and emotional wellbeing. It’s used in the healing arts to help everyone from veterans and people with addiction to those of us going through a rough patch to heal our trauma, post-traumatic stress injury, insomnia, self worth, and more.
Our goal is to make iRest accessible to as many people as possible across the world. If there’s a specific industry, group, or population that you want to help, our Level 1 iRest teacher training is offered in-person and online, over five days.
If this is your path, there are people who only you can reach. Heed the call. These research-backed tools are ready for you to take into your community.