You may have already heard about the benefits of regular meditation, ranging from boosting memory and health to helping you cope with stress, depression, and anxiety, with a host of other pros in between, but to some, meditation isn’t appealing and might be just another task you have to do each day.
Here are meditation tips for beginners.
Here we are going to talk about basic meditation tips for beginners, without making it a daunting task for you newbies.
Start your meditation practice without any expectations
The first thing you need to understand before you start meditating is that it isn’t the quick fix to all your problems. Like any other form of exercise, meditation too requires effort, and the outcomes, albeit slow, are sure.
The more time and effort you put into it, the better your result will be. Try not to go into meditation thinking about what the immediate outcome of it will be. Instead, start meditating in an effort to know your mind better.
Fix a time to meditate and stick to it
To establish meditation as a habit, rather than mere practice, it is very essential to schedule a particular time of the day, a time which you will fix for meditation only. In this way, you’re more likely to meditate each and every day.
You can even pair meditation with a habit that’s already in place like making a cup of coffee in the morning or even jotting down a to-do list before going to bed.
Take a few minutes to calm down and clarify your mind
Hoping right into meditation after an intense workout session or after a stressful work meeting might not be the best technique, instead take a couple of minutes to calm down your mind, bring those pulses under control, and in this way, you can concentrate more on the meditation rather than what happened prior to it.
This way your mind will not wander around the previous happenings, and the result of the meditation will be fruitful.
Have a particular space to meditate
Having a designated place or a room to meditate can be really useful in training the mind to be comfortable with the practice. This will allow the transition into meditation, to be smoother.
A separate space for meditation allows you to get accustomed to that place and with time you get more habituated in meditating in that space. It begins to seem more comfortable, rather than a daunting task each day. Better make sure it is a phone-free zone.
Try not to be restless during meditation
While meditating, make sure your posture is quite stable and stationary and avoid moving too much. It is common to feel restless while meditating. If you’re in pain or can’t bear the position anymore, feel free to re-adjust yourself.
If you have difficulties in sitting down for a long time, try practicing other forms of meditation that allow you to walk or even lie down. Don’t let your meditation posture become a distraction itself.
Just breath simply
Meditation doesn’t have to be something complex and daunting as already mentioned beforehand. Simply try to bring your awareness back to your breath, over and over again. This is where the essence of meditation lies.
The grip over the wandering mind is easy once you master the art of concentrating only on your breathing. To do so, you can simply say “in” while inhaling and “out” while exhaling. This will help you to stay focused on your breathing only.
Come back when your mind is wandering
It is almost certain that your mind will wander, and it is not something wrong. Every time you get distracted and your mind is grasped by irrelevant thoughts just come back to your breathing.
It sounds easy and is even easier in practice. Just count “one”, take a breath, and slowly move ahead from there. Do this every time your mind gets distracted. It might be frustrating at first, but slowly you will get the knack for it.
Developing a loving attitude
When you feel that thoughts are arising and trying to distract you, which will happen, from the mental peace you’re seeking, see these thoughts as friends and not enemies or intruders.
These thoughts are a part of your normal thinking process, though not all of them. See them as friends and develop a friendly attitude towards them. Don’t be aggressive or harsh towards them which means that you are being harsh on yourself.
Don’t worry about doing it wrong and messing things up
You will have this thought that you might be messing up the actual process of meditation. We all do and it’s perfectly OK.
To be very honest there is no such actual process or perfect way of doing meditation. Just do it the way you are most comfortable and happy with and start to see results pop up.
Don’t worry about cleansing the mind
We all have thoughts arising while we meditate, and it’s perfectly fine to have them. We just cannot stop these thoughts from popping up all of a sudden. Clearing the mind from all thoughts is not the actual “goal” of meditation.
Your mind is the storehouse of various thoughts and these return at different moments, throughout the day. Whenever the mind wanders while meditating, make sure that you’re focusing solely on your breathing.
Stay with the thoughts that arise
Try staying with the thoughts that arise while meditating. Yes, it was mentioned to focus more on the breath when the mind wanders, but sometimes you should let the thoughts occupy a bit of time inside your mind, after focusing on the breath for a week.
You will tend to avoid the feelings of anxiety, stress, and anger but surprisingly useful meditational practices claim that staying with the thoughts is actually useful. Simply stay and be curious.
Try to know yourself through meditation
Might sound difficult at first, but with time you all can ace this process of getting to know yourself better. Meditation is not only about focusing on attention and breathing but also about learning to know yourself better.
It’s bleak, but getting frustrated as the thoughts pop up, avoiding certain feelings, trying to grip the wandering mind, you can actually know yourself better.
Be friends with yourself
At the end of the day, all we have is us and it’s a genuine fact. As you are getting to know yourself, simply try developing a friendly attitude towards yourself rather than criticizing yourself.
Just think that you are meeting a new friend. Smile and prosper love over yourself, instead of hatred.
Try doing a scan of the body
Once you get accustomed to meditation and are quite good at following your breath and focusing your attention towards it, try to shift the focus to one body part at a time.
For example, try diverting the attention towards the feet. See how they feel. Then slowly shift it to the toes, your ankles, right up to the head. This will be quite easy once you get specialized in meditation.
Noticing the lights, sounds, and energy around you
A very important trait to practice is paying attention to these elements. Once you have gained control over your mind and can focus absolutely on your breath, try shifting the focus towards the light in the room you’re meditating in.
Simply keep your eyes on a particular spot and notice the light coming in the room. In the same way, shift your attention towards the sounds you hear. And some other day focus on the energies you feel surrounding you.
Acknowledge the emotions
You might feel very happy and relieved after you meditate, but at the same time, you might also feel a bit down. It is completely normal. Meditating brings to the limelight, good as well as bad emotions.
This is because meditation makes us recognize what the emotions actually are that we deal with. Feelings and fleeting thoughts come and go. Take a moment to be proud of yourself that you actually put in the effort to meditate.
Go ahead, commit yourself
If you really want to see improvements in your day-to-day lives by doing meditation and using it as a tool to really solve the issues you are facing, don’t just say that you are gonna try it for a couple of days.
If you are really looking for a life-changing solution, go all-in with meditation. Try it for at least a month before you think that it is not your cup of tea. Meditation doesn’t come with shortcuts.
Don’t forget to smile once you’re done
After your meditation is complete, don’t forget to smile and be grateful to yourself for staying true to your commitment. You showed yourself that you are trustworthy and you even tried to understand and know yourself more.
You made friends with yourself, so be proud and give a beautiful smile. Those were some amazing minutes of your life.
You must do it again the following day
The power vested in meditation can be inculcated only if it is practiced regularly. You must add it to your daily routine and assign a specific time for meditation.
Even if meditation doesn’t feel like something very soothing to do each and every day, you must remember that doing it regularly is bound to show you the results that you are looking for.
You must understand that the more effort and time you put into meditation, the more pronounced your results will be. The outcomes, albeit slow, are really life-changing. No wonder why the leading companies have included meditation in their workplace. So, start today, start positive, and never give up.