Why and How to Meditate for Dummies
February 11, 2022
Why should you consider starting/practicing meditation?
Well, what would your life look like if you had:
● Less stress, anxiety and depression
● A better self-image and outlook on life
● Enhanced self awareness
● Better problem solving skills
● More love and kindness in your life
● Better relationships
● Focused attention span
● Improved sleep
● Less pain or discomfort
● The power to create the future you desire
… all accessible to you anytime, anywhere?
This list merely scratches the surface when it comes to the benefits of meditation. What even is meditation you might ask? What comes to mind for many of us might look like sitting cross legged on the floor, eyes closed, in complete silence for hours on end. If the thought of this sounds absolutely boring and unbearable, then I have good news for you! Simply put, meditation is about training your awareness and gaining a healthy sense of perspective. The goal is not to quiet the mind, turn off or control your thoughts and feelings, but rather to be a non-judgemental observer of your thoughts or feelings. This awareness allows us to be more present and effective for ourselves, work, our relationships with friends and family, and as a member of society. Additionally, it helps to improve your physical wellbeing, helping you to feel better overall. What would your world look like if you were the best version of yourself each and every day?
How to Start Meditating:
1. Get clear on what meditation is (and is not)! To recap, meditation IS the practice of exercising your attention and awareness. It is not about controlling your thoughts, feelings, emotions, or focus.
2. Pick a time of day that works! Make sure you are in a quiet and comfortable place. Some people choose to practice meditation first thing in the morning, but can also be done right before going to bed.
3. Start with guided meditations. There are many apps helpful to starting a daily meditation practice such as Calm, Headspace, Ten Percent Happier, and Simple Habit. You can also find plenty of meditations on youtube!
4. If all of this seems overwhelming, start with a simple breathwork technique. An easy technique to use is the box-breathing method: start by releasing all of the air from your chest, hold your breath for 4 seconds, breathe through the nose for 4 seconds, hold your breath for 4 seconds, then exhale out of the nose for 4 seconds. Repeat this cycle for 1-5 minutes.
5. After getting into the daily habit of a meditation practice, start trying different types of meditation practices such as mindfulness practices, transcendental meditation, guided meditation, loving kindness meditation, chakra meditation or yoga meditation. See what kind of meditation style resonates with you!
The most important thing to consider when starting meditation practices is to be gentle and patient with yourself. Like going to the gym, meditation is an exercise of the mind and its consciousness. We cant expect to be able to run a marathon or lift double our body weight overnight.
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