How To Meditate - Our Quick and Easy Beginners Guide to Meditation and its Benefits.
Meditation is not just for hippies anymore...
Most people think meditation is something silly, and I have to admit I was one of those people. After trying it myself though, I cannot recommend it enough. Think of meditation as a mental exercise. Ever play sudoko or other mind games? Meditation is simply another form of exercising your mind but instead of exercising short term memory, or puzzle solving, you're exercising your ability to focus.
The goal: Focus.
If you're really good you'll manage to focus on a simple thought for a few minutes without getting distracted. Doing this is hard for everyone at first, but with a bit of practice you'll see dramatic improvements.
Failure is good. (really!)
Every time you get distracted and refocus, you're training your mind to stay on task. In fact, you'll find the times you struggle the most to maintain focus are the times you get the most benefit.
Posture doesn't matter, but comfort does.
You can meditate in any way that works for you. Want to wear tights? go for it. Clown suit? That's fine as long as its comfortable. This writer prefers to sit on the floor with his back to the couch. You can lay down as well. Just get comfortable.
How to mediate in 6 easy steps:
- Go to quiet place (no TV or radio please)
- Get into a comfortable position.
- Close your eyes.
- Breath in deeply through your nose.
- Breath out through your mouth. (each breath should take a few seconds)
- Count your breaths until you get to 60.
When you're breathing, only think about how the breath feels. When you start thinking about anything else like…
- Your job or...
- Your kids or...
- That itch on your nose or...
- How long its been since you started meditating…
Regain control over your thoughts, and refocus on your breathing. Remember each time your mind wanders and you catch yourself you're training yourself to focus better. These are mental pushups so the more times you catch yourself the faster you'll improve.
If you don't like counting (or you lose count), find some music that lasts 5 minutes, or set an alarm. I happen to really like this song. Its about 7 minutes long and puts me into the right state of mind:
So why meditate? We'll write a few articles about it in the future, but here are a few key reasons:
- It helps us control our mind loops.
- It lowers our stress.
- It levels our mood.
- It improves our concentration.
- It helps us sleep.
- It lowers our blood pressure.
- It helps us become better listeners.
- It helps us control and understand our emotions.
Don't just read about it. Give it a try.
So grab some headphones sit down on the floor and give it a try. Do it again when you go to sleep. Do it when you wake up. Do it in the car before you pick up the kids. Aim for at least once per day.
If you've never meditated, its going to feel awkward at first. However, we guarantee you that if you do it every day for a week, you'll start seeing significant benefits.