Meditation can have a very positive effect on our attitude towards life and may even help improve the overall quality of our life. I take time every morning to quiet my mind and prepare for the day. It soothes my nerves and helps stave off the stress that inevitably tries to creep in. Less stress often means more positive feelings in general. I have found that meditation has helped my physical health as well; since practicing regular meditation, I have experienced less illness and more energy. Meditation may help lower blood pressure, improve blood circulation, regulate the heart and respiratory rates, reduce stress and anxiety, and promote better overall wellbeing. There is a variety of meditating techniques. Concentration meditation focuses on a single point while mindful meditation is intended to control wandering thoughts.
Here are a few pointers so that you, too, can reap the benefits of regular meditation:
1. Choose a Suitable Time
Meditation is intended to be a time of relaxation, so try to choose a time that is convenient for you and won’t be interrupted. I have found that morning is the best time for me, before the craziness of the day gets in my way.
2. Find a Peaceful Place
Your meditation area should be peaceful and quiet to allow you to concentrate.
3. Sit in a Comfortable Posture
Your posture makes a huge difference, so make sure it is proper yet comfortable. Sit straight with your spine erect and legs crossed, keeping shoulders and neck relaxed and your eyes closed throughout your session.
4. Meditate on an Empty Stomach
The best time to meditate is before meals because digestion can make you drowsy; you don’t want to fall asleep during your meditation! However, make sure you are not starving, either; a hungry stomach can be a huge distraction.
5. Start with a Warm-Up Session and Deep Breathing
Warm up exercises will help you achieve better results. Try some small stretches, brief, 30-second concentration periods, or light a candle or incense, just something to help prepare your mind for focus. Deep breathing is a great way to start. Take full, deep breaths. Strive for mindfulness, really concentrating on each breath as it enters and leaves your body.
3 Meditation Techniques
Now that your body is prepared, there are three different meditation techniques you can use. Here is a brief introduction to them:
1. Walking Meditation
If sitting for long periods of time doesn’t appeal to you, you can try walking meditation. The goal is to focus on your body while you move. Pay attention to the swing of your arms and how your legs feel with each step. Feel the breath in your body and note how your feet rise and touch the ground.
2. Breathing Meditation
In your comfortable position, close your eyes, breathe slowly through your nose, then hold your breath for a few seconds. Exhale again slowly through your mouth, trying to make the exhale twice as long as the inhale.
3. Mindfulness Meditation
This requires your mind to be in the moment. Start by focusing on your breath, then begin to notice other sensations throughout your body.
Meditation has changed my life and my attitude, and I know you will feel the difference, too. Start out small, just a few minutes a day, and gradually work your way to more time. The important thing is to be deliberate about making the time. Your body and mind will thank you!