10 Tips for Meditating

As most people have heard by now, meditating is extremely beneficial for your health and overall happiness.  In today’s world, our body and minds are constantly over stimulated.  We are busy, we are distracted and we are constantly thinking, even when we are trying to sleep.  Learning to focus and control your mind will allow you to manage your thoughts and give yourself a much-needed break.  Because it also helps with stress management, meditation has been proven to help your health from lowering blood pressure to losing weight.

One of the common reactions I get when I purpose meditating to someone is “I can’t do that” or “I would go crazy just sitting in silence.”  If either of these are your first thoughts, you probably need this more than you think.  It will allow yourself the space to listen to yourself, detach a little bit from your chaotic life, and give you the gift of doing something just for yourself.  The peace that comes once you get the hang of it is undeniable and addictive (in a good way 🙂 ).

Below are 10 useful tips for those that want to start meditating but aren’t sure how.  It doesn’t have to be complicated, just give yourself some time to be alone and in quiet.  The rest will flow naturally.

  1. Find A Quiet Space – When a person is just starting to meditate it is sometimes difficult to not get distracted by noises.  Find a place that is as quiet as possible and has a great energy.
  2. Be Comfortable – Sit in a way that will not cause any pain or tension.  Also, be sure to meditate in loose and comfortable clothing.
  3. Create A Sacred Space – As meditation becomes a routine it is useful to have a space that your body and mind learn to relax in.  If you can’t create an alter or a place that you can consistently meditate, just get in a habit of lighting a particular candle or incense.
  4. Set A Timer – Many people have trouble not watching the clock in fear that they may fall asleep or meditate for too long.  A simple solution to this is to set a timer that has a nice sound to gently bring you out of meditation.  There are many phone applications that are meditation timers and awake you with a nice chime. You can also use a radio alarm clock and set it to a relaxing station.
  5. Stretch Beforehand – Stretching your shoulder and leg muscles before you sit can help you release tension.  This is a great way to relax your muscles and allow your body to get comfortable.
  6. Start Out With Guided Meditations – If you find sitting in silence too hard then chose some guided meditations or mantras to begin with.  They help you focus and give your body the time to relax.  They are found on ITunes, Amazon, or with a simple web search.
  7. Don’t Have Expectations – Sometimes people have certain expectations of meditation that aren’t always true or accessible at all times.  You may fall asleep, you may see colors, you may not have anything happen…it is all okay. Go in with an open mind and spend the time observing your practice instead of judging it.
  8. Don’t Try To Shut Off Your Thoughts – It is impossible, that simple.  Thoughts will come and go, don’t get frustrated with them or yourself.  Just gently release them when they come.
  9. Look For The Results Outside of Your Practice – Meditation brings many benefits.  Once your start getting in touch with yourself miraculous things can come into your life.  You may also find you are having new perspectives and responses in certain situations.  Observe these changes to see the effectiveness rather than what is or is not happening in meditation.
  10. Build It Into Your Routine – Setting a time to meditate generally isn’t successful in maintaining a daily practice.  Building it into a routine (i.e. after I brush my teeth before bed or in the morning, etc.) can be more effective.  It takes 21 days to form a habit so keep at it!

It is best to meditate for 30 minutes twice a day but if that is too much, start smaller.  Even 10 minutes every day will greatly shift your moods and stress levels.  The key is to give yourself this time and give you mind and body a break.  Enjoy!

Imagine yourself sitting somewhere peaceful and beautiful.

Imagine yourself sitting somewhere peaceful and beautiful.

 
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