When thinking about meditation, many people picture expert practitioners such as monks, who don’t move, speak or eat for hours. Well, good news: you’re wrong 🙂
Meditation is actually a pretty simple art, that everyone can access easily. All is about positive energy and positive vibes. Best is that it’s beneficial right away! The only obstacle to start is you. So don’t think twice and try it, you’ll see that you’ll love it.
The Ultimate Purpose of Meditation
This ancient discipline dates back thousands of years and is becoming more and more popular these past years. Its purpose is to cleanse yourself from stress, negativity, and most important: from yourself. The ultimate goal is to reach beyond your mind and live in the world of pure spirit.
Many people who meditate only look to reduce physical and mental stress and gain a certain degree of peace of mind. However, if you persevere, you will come to realize that there is another meditation degree. You’ll be able to silent your thoughts and mind and reach the ultimate state of awareness. At this state, called the thoughtless state, there are no thoughts, no thinking.
This may seems a bit complicated to achieve but as everything, you’ll go little step by little step before reaching the ultimate one. Indeed, meditation is good for your health even if you’re starting with a few minutes daily at first.
Choosing a Meditation Technique
Many meditation techniques exist. Some are teaching you how to concentrate on the top of your nose, on your breathing, or on your movements. Others, are helping you to focus on a certain quote, pray, or mantra.
You don’t need a specific space. You can meditate by walking, sitting, looking to the sea or at a sunset…
Either methods you choose, you teach your mind to focus on one object or thought. You’re training your mind to become one-pointed.
Why Meditation Is Good for Your Body and Mind
For Your Body
Some studies proved that a regular practice of meditation can help you with chronic diseases, such as stress, back and stomach pains, sleep disorder, and dermatological problems.
Also, meditation reduces your heart rate, blood pressure, and stimulate your immune system. Indeed, by practicing it, you’ll get an increase in your antibody levels in your blood, and it prevents from winter pathologies.
How does meditation is that beneficial you’re going to ask? Well, it directly acts on your parasympathetic nervous system, which regulates stress. Regular meditation practitioners go less to the doctor, have less infectious diseases, and have a better cardiovascular condition.
For Your Mind
It has been scientifically proved: meditation helps to prevent from mild depression and prevents from risk of relapse.
Meditation practice is recommended for many therapies nowadays. It will actually help dealing with mood variations and anxiety issues, taking some distance, and overcoming negative thoughts.
Now that you know more about meditation, its techniques and health benefits, it’s time to practice! You’ll find below 2 easy trainings for new starters.
3 Meditation Exercises for Beginners
The Day Relaxation Break
Time: from 5 to 15 minutes
Where: at your home. You create a zen space by lighting up some candles, diffusing the lighting, adding some relaxing images, putting some background nature musics. Other option is to do it in the nature, such as the forest or a calm park. Remember that nothing is mandatory: if something doesn’t suit you: do it your own way!
The practice: choose a comfortable position with opened or closed eyes. Then start by 3 deep abdominal breathings in order to relax completely your body. Without any thoughts or objectives, try to clear your mind and be in the present by allowing everything feelings or thoughts and let them go. Breathe freely, without effort. If you want to, you can immerse yourself in the landscape or image. This contemplation is focusing your mind and driving your thoughts away. If some of your thoughts come along the way, accept them and let them go. Don’t feel like you’ve failed if you can’t stop your thoughts, it’s a pretty complicated exercise, especially at the beginning.
The Evening Relaxation Time
Time: from 5 to 15 minutes
Where: at your home, in your bed.
The practice: lay on your bed in a comfortable position, with your eyes closed. Then, place your mind on every part of your body. Try to feel the pressures and to ease them. You can start from your feet to your hair, one time or more.
The Active Relaxation
Time: from 3 to 5 minutes
Where: where you want: while walking in a park or in the street, cooking, taking a shower, eating, having a tea… Idea is to transform an act that you usually do without thinking by an act of full awareness.
The practice: Be fully present in what you’re doing in the moment. For example, if you’re taking a shower, don’t think about your morning meetings. Forget that and start to feel the drops of hot water that run on your skin, smell the perfume and feel the texture of your shower gel. Change this situation by a full sensorial experience. If you’re cooking and peeling some vegetables, touch and smell them while you’re cutting them. Act as a chef: don’t think of anything else, move slowly, only focus on what you’re doing on the moment. If you’re eating, don’t look at your favorite TV show. Smell and look what you’re eating. Enjoy the many flavours, textures, and colors. Let the food melt in your mouth. You’ll see, your taste buds will be more than thankful 🙂
So what’s stopping you to start meditation? If it’s one of the following ideas received, then you should stop giving excuses and start right away!
5 False Ideas Received About Meditation
#1- You Need a Lot of Time to Practice Meditation
You can practice meditation for only a few minutes or indeed, for a long period of time. It’s up to you! When you start, you can meditate for a few minutes while walking or under the shower for example. However, it’s important for you to meditate at the same period of time (morning or evening for example) everyday.
#2- Meditation Is Only for Experts
Everyone can meditate: elderlies, children, new practitioners… You don’t need to be an expert or a hippie to try it 🙂
#3- You Need to Be in the Lotus Position, Still and With Your Eyes Closed
It’s not an obligation. Indeed, you can meditate while sitting in the lotus position. By being still, it will learn you to stop doing, just “be”. However, the only advice is to feel comfortable. If you prefer to do it while walking, it’s also a good meditation technique!
#4- Practicing Meditation Requires a Long Training
The more you practice, the better you’ll get. But there is no failure in meditation. What matters is the focus and energy you’ll put while trying. Don’t set target that are hard to get or stay still if you want to move.
#5- You Need to Have a Dedicated Space
It’s good to have a dedicated space at home with candles and pillows, if you feel like it. But that’s absolutely not mandatory. The only thing is not to be disturbed.