Let me start by saying meditation is not easy.
But I really do believe that if everyone were to meditate on a consistent basis, we would reach world peace. Bold statement? Maybe. If you’re not already on that meditation train, you should consider it.
Meditation has become somewhat of a social norm these days. It seems that everyone and their grandmother is meditating and sharing with others the wealth it has to offer. While this is all great and true, learning the right way to meditate can be somewhat of a journey.
With that being said, meditation is a simple yet active practice, and I mean practice literally. It’s just breathing. But with active intention. You already know how to breathe, I hope. That’s half the equation. Just as you would practice playing the guitar, the more you work on your mediation, the better you’ll become at it. Plus, it can be done from almost anywhere. No memberships or special equipment needed.
I know you’ve already heard about the restorative and healing benefits of meditation, and how it can enhance your overall well-being. Controlling anxiety, increasing self-awareness, and generating kindness are just a few of its many advantages. No matter who you are, meditation is an amazing outlet for relaxation and reconnecting with your inner self.
Don’t think of meditation isn’t a magic pill that will solve all your problems. A quick fix like that will never be worth your while. Rather, think of it as a tool to use to de-stress and lean towards better well-being. So, what are you waiting for?
Silence your cell phones. Lock the door. Get a babysitter. Do what you need to do to make this happen. Then make a commitment to a set amount of time you plan on meditating for. Find a comfortable seated position where you’re able to relax. Once your eyes are closed, you will focus on your breathing, taking deep, cleansing breaths. Then continue to breathe at a normal pace through the tip of your nose with your lips gently closed. Breathe into the areas of your body where you feel any tightness or discomfort, then allowing yourself to release that tension.
By doing this, you then become the most mindful version of yourself. After all, the core of meditation is mindfulness. With that in mind, when you’re first starting out, it’s ok to not have long-term goals through meditation, but rather be mindful and experience things “as they are”.
Spiritual self, you ask? That is, the version of you that’s one with the universe. However that translates for you, tune into it. I find this easiest when I have something to focus on. Whether that be a guided meditation app, a positive mantra you can apply to your life, or a psychical object such as a candle – setting your intention and focusing on it is key.
The mind should be relaxed during your meditative state. Not spinning in circles over how your boss is less than satisfied with your work performance lately. When you do find your mind wandering away from the present moment, it’s important not to focus on “emptying your mind”. Rather, become aware that your attention has drifted, then gently return to your focus.
Like I’ve said, successful meditation comes down to practicing often. Make it a part of your routine the same way you’d schedule an evening jog or meal prepping for your week ahead. There’s a great variety of meditation styles too, each having their own benefits. Try out different styles of meditation that suit your goals so you can find something you’ll stick to. Even if it’s just a few minutes each day.
This study conducted in the UK had two test groups. One used a guided meditation app once a day for 8 weeks, while the control group did not. They found that “the intervention group reported significant improvement in well-being, distress, and job strain.” Basically, think of meditation as a positive addition to your daily life. Think of it the same way as other things that make you feel good.
I learned successful meditation through an app called Insight Timer. Without this app, I don’t think I would have found the success that I have. It’s one of the top meditation apps on iTunes with over 60 thousand downloads and a 4.9-star rating. The app includes free, easy-to-follow meditations and inspirational talks geared towards pretty much anyone and everyone. Their professional contributors come from all walks of life to share their meditative practices with us.
With a little perseverance, anyone can learn successful meditation. I am still a complete newbie at this practice, but I have already seen results from the meditative power I’ve unleashed. I wake up more productive, I sleep sounder, and my anxiety has decreased since taking up this practice. I’m now a firm believer in all the benefits it has to offer. Once you’re in the practice of meditation, you’ll understand what methods work for you, and ultimately improve your quality of life. You might just end up one very zen individual.
Whether you’re just beginning, or you’re already thriving from the benefits meditation has to offer, please share your thoughts in the comments below!
Originally published at www.todaywithtara.com