There are many benefits to meditation. For some, finding and entering the door to inner peace comes quite easily. For most though, we have to work at it. Our minds are usually cluttered and on overdrive, so “switching off” is not a natural process. If you want to meditate every day, here’s what you can do.
One of the easiest tips for how to start meditating every day is to concentrate on your posture. It doesn’t matter if you sit cross legged on the floor or in a chair. The key is to make sure that you are sitting up straight so that your spine is as upright as possible. Keep your head up too. The mind and the body are in sync, so if you have an unbalanced posture, you will have an unbalanced mind.
2. Keep Focus
It is extraordinary the amount of tasks we can achieve on a daily basis without really focusing. Even things like driving can be done with half of your mind on something else. Whenever you feel your thoughts beginning to drift, make a conscious decision to regain your focus and streamline it towards your current activity. You will be surprised by how much more productive and alert you become.
3. Open Your Eyes
Though many people tend to close their eyes when trying to meditate, it is actually recommended that you try to keep them open. Having open eyes results in your body and mind being more present and stops you from drifting away and thinking about other things. Rather than closing them, simply lower your eyes and allow your focus to soften instead.
4. Natural Breathing
Though a lot of attention is paid to the breathing process during meditation, you do not necessarily have to change your breathing pattern at all. What is much more important is that you pay attention to the motion of your breathing; the in and out of breath that makes up your natural flow. There is really no need to regulate your flow, just let it stay natural and embrace your body’s rhythm.
5. Release Your Thoughts
In order to keep your mind as clear as possible, when you notice any stray thoughts entering in to your head, attempt to let them gently pass through by refocusing all of your attention on the pattern of your breathing or readjusting your lowered, open eyed gaze. Rather than cutting yourself off from all outside thought from the outset, simply learn how to usher them away with little effort.
Though many people use and recommend different varieties of ‘meditation music’, the truth is that there is nothing more calming and zone inducing than the sound of silence. External noise, no matter how calming it professes to be, will always be giving your mind something to focus on that is of an external nature. Bring the attention back to yourself by sitting in silence and allowing your mind to become one with your body without external distractions.
7. Enjoy Yourself!
The most important factor in all of this is that you must embrace the act of meditation rather than seeing it as a chore that will eventually start to pay off. Psychologically, you are never going to feel a benefit from something that you do not look forward to or enjoy doing. Enjoying your periods of meditation is vital to attaining a sense of well-being and positive change.
Make sure you have a good environment in which to meditate – make yourself a little Zen corner if you can. Don’t push yourself to do it for too long. Start with 10 minutes and gradually work your way up to lengthier periods (up to half hour) as you find it easier to get into the zone and stay there.
Have successful meditators got any tips to share with newbies?