If so, take comfort in the fact that you’re not alone.
When you’re in the midst of life and dealing with your day-to-day tasks, routines, and stressors, it can be difficult to take time for yourself and relax,
there’s an activity that can help ease some of those daily burdens in as little as 10 minutes; meditation.
This ancient practice has been used around the world for centuries- (perfect, that means it’s tried, true, and tested)- and you can confidently use this brilliant practice to gently SHIFT your world 🙂
In this blog post, we’ll dive into the basics of meditation and provide a convenient guide on how you as a beginner can get started today, including:
- What is Meditation?
- Tips on Developing a Regular Practice
- Setting the Scene for Meditation
- Finding a Comfortable Meditation Position
- Guided Visualization Techniques
- Breathing Exercises- Very Important
- Overcoming Distractions and Staying Disciplined
- Mantras and Affirmations
- Final Tips For Success
- There You Have It – An Introduction to the Basics of Meditation!
What is Meditation?
Simply put, it’s the practice of focusing your attention on something, most commonly your breath, in order to quiet the mind and achieve a state of relaxation.
There are many benefits to meditation, both mentally and physically. By calming the mind, meditation can reduce stress and anxiety, improve mood, and enhance emotional well-being.
It can also improve your physical health by reducing blood pressure, alleviating pain, and boosting your immune system.
And- if that’s not enough- it can improve your ability to concentrate and increase your overall productivity!
And with regular practice, meditation can help you live a more balanced, peaceful life.
Setting the Scene for Meditation
The room you meditate in should be free of distractions and clutter, allowing your mind to focus solely on your breath and the present moment.
It could be a serene room with soft lighting, fresh flowers on a nearby table, and the soothing sounds of nature playing in the background.
Or, it can be you, in your bed, first thing in the morning, it can be on your deck, lawn, or patio, it can be anywhere you have a few peaceful moments- but also an area that feels nice.
I’m sure you have the perfect place in mind!
Before starting your meditation, take a few deep breaths and allow yourself to fully settle into the space.
With each inhale, imagine peace and calm filling your body. With each exhale, release any tension or worries. Now, let’s begin your meditation journey.
Finding a Comfortable Meditation Position
Meditation can be a powerful tool for reducing stress, improving focus, and increasing overall well-being, but finding a comfortable position can be a challenge for many people.
Some prefer to sit cross-legged on the floor, while others find chairs more comfortable.
Remember to keep your spine straight and your shoulders relaxed.
You may want to use a cushion or pillow to support your back or elevate your hips and there are meditation cushions solely for this purpose.
With practice, you’ll be able to slip into your preferred position and focus on your meditation practice without any distractions.
Guided Visualization Techniques
Visualization techniques help people focus and achieve their goals.
It involves creating a mental image of a particular scene or situation and then bringing that image to life in your mind.
For example, maybe you want to focus on one change for the day, like:
- being intentionally calm,
- practicing intentional patience,
- fulfilling a daily goal – getting that certain paperwork or household admin done, whatever your short OR long-term goal(s),
and then focus, focus only on that one thing, maybe it’s bringing your blood pressure down, whatever the case, meditate with positivity and good intentions.
bring up a YouTube video if you’d like and enjoy a guided meditation instead.
Breathing Exercises- Very Important!
Breathing exercises are one of the most effective ways to quickly reduce stress levels and encourage relaxation.
By simply controlling your breathing, you can calm your nerves and improve your overall well-being.
Techniques like diaphragmatic breathing, alternate nostril breathing, and counting breaths can help slow down your heart rate and release tension from your body.
Consistent practice of these breathing exercises can help you relax in the moment but can also have long-term benefits on your mental and physical health.
Include these always with your meditation practice, but make it a point to be aware of your breathing throughout the day, and yes, this takes practice.
See this post to learn more: Are You Breathing Right? Find Out Here For Better Health.
Mantras and Affirmations
Many people struggle with distractions, restlessness, or discomfort when trying to meditate and this is totally normal.
So when it comes to staying present and in the moment, using mantras and affirmations can be powerful tools.
Mantras are short, repetitive phrases that are chanted or repeated to aid in concentration and focus.
Affirmations, on the other hand, are positive statements that help to rewire your thought patterns and shift your mindset to a more positive place.
Both can be useful in keeping you rooted in the present and preventing your mind from wandering off into worries about the future or regrets about the past.
And if you’re interested, I’ve made printable copies of both the affirmations and mantras that you can print off and keep handy:
Here are the 10 mantra examples:
- “I am here now, in this moment, and I choose to be present.”
- “I release all worries and thoughts of the past and future.”
- “With each breath, I am becoming more calm and peaceful.”
- “I am grateful for this time to quiet my mind and connect with myself.”
- “I trust in the universe and know that everything will work out for my highest good.”
- “I am whole and complete as I am, and I trust in my inner strength.”
- “My mind is clear, my body is relaxed, and my spirit is at peace.”
- “I let go of any judgment or criticism of myself or others.”
- “I am worthy of love, joy, and abundance, and I welcome these into my life.”
- “I am connected to the infinite wisdom and love of the universe.”
And here are the 10 affirmations:
- “I am capable of handling any challenge that comes my way.”
- “I trust in my ability to make the best decisions for myself and my family.”
- “Every day, I am becoming stronger, wiser, and more resilient.”
- “I deserve to take care of myself and prioritize my own needs.”
- “I am surrounded by love and support from those around me.”
- “I am worthy of rest, relaxation, and self-care.”
- “I acknowledge my accomplishments and celebrate my successes.”
- “I am grateful for the blessings in my life, big and small.”
- “I embrace change and growth as opportunities for learning and discovery.”
- “I choose to focus on the positive and let go of negativity and fear.”
So the next time you find yourself struggling to stay present, try repeating a simple mantra or positive affirmation to yourself and see how it can help shift your perspective.
Final Tips For Success!
1. Finding a community: While meditation is largely a solitary practice, finding a community of like-minded individuals can be both comforting and motivating. Connecting with a meditation community, whether online or in person, can be helpful for seeking support and guidance in your practice.
2. Incorporating meditation into daily life: It can be challenging to find the time and motivation to do it regularly. Try practicing first thing in the morning or during a lunch break. Use guided meditations, apps, or books to help develop a deeper understanding and appreciation for the practice of meditation.
3. The importance of self-compassion: Meditation can be challenging, and you may find yourself getting frustrated or discouraged. Know that meditation is a process and you CAN do it!
4. The intersection of meditation and spirituality: While meditation is a secular practice, it can also be a way for you to enhance, re-incorporate, or connect with your spiritual beliefs.
5. Barriers to meditation: You may experience certain barriers to starting a meditation practice, like believing there’s not enough time or you won’t be good at it. Just know that that is nonsense, there is no perfect meditator, and anything you do is better than doing nothing!
6. Combining meditation with other mindfulness practices: Meditation can be combined with other practices such as journaling, gratitude exercises, or yoga, and by doing other practices, you’ll develop a holistic approach to mindfulness that will change your life.
There You Have It – An Introduction to the Basics of Meditation!
By implementing these resources, and tips for overcoming challenges, you can start to build a consistent meditation practice and reap the benefits.
Exploring different types of meditation, finding a community, and incorporating mindfulness into your daily life can deepen the practice and enhance your overall well-being.
With an open mind and a commitment to self-care, you can start your own meditation journey and discover the transformative power of this ancient practice.