Meditation for Beginners: How to Start Your Practice Today
We’ve all heard of this popular term before and it has become increasingly popular over the years. What is meditation?
Meditation is a broad concept. It is the ability to be present, with total awareness.
Meditation can be both a skill and an experience. It can cultivate awareness and compassion. It involves sitting with the mind, which thereby makes the mind more at ease. The results are clarity, calmness, contentment and compassion.
Learning to meditate is a skill that improves through time and practice. It is like exercising a muscle that you’ve not worked out before. It takes consistent practice with awareness.
How did meditation get so popular?
Life can come with difficult challenges. While one can’t control what happens, an individual has the potential to transform the way one responds. In the modern world, it can be quite complex and busy. We are left overloaded with information and being exposed to the digital world constantly. Constant noise triggers and distractions. It is becoming more difficult to find a peace of mind.
When one makes a conscious effort to stay in the present, not identified to thoughts and external situations, we have greater the ability to take life in full stride.
Irrespective of the circumstances, meditation provides a tool for the mind to handle things in a better manner.
What is the right way to practice?
There’s no such thing as an ideal or perfect meditation. Sometimes you’ll focus will wander and you might tend to forget to follow your breath. That is perfectly fine. It’s part of the experience. It’s important to meditate consistently. It’s one of those things where the journey is important than the destination.
It’s important to remember that the experience varies from person to person. It has several positive outcomes on psychological, emotional, and physical quality of life for regular participants.
What are its benefits?
- People who incorporate meditation daily experience higher levels of acceptance, patience, happiness and compassion
- Lowers levels of stress, frustration, anger, anxiety, pain, and depression.
- Ability to improve the quality of one's sleep.
- Improves relationships and sex.
How do I meditate?
It’s best to create a conducive environment. Keep a time to practice and find a suitable location. It’s ideal to find a quiet comfortable space with minimal interruptions. Turn off all electronic gadgets, send the pets away and take your own time to get into the zone.
The time you consider to spend meditation may change based on circumstances and experience. It usually takes several minutes or more just to settle in and be still with the mind.
It is recommended to tie one's practice to a daily routine like brushing teeth, taking a shower), especially when getting started. It’s also important to be flexible, so it’s no problem if you prefer to meditate different times a day.
How to Start with Meditation?
It is known to have existed for thousands of years; however, it has evolved through geography and time. There are different methods to practice and thousands of techniques in the world. Here is a foundation to start with, it's pretty basic and easy to follow, wherever you are in.
- Take deep breaths, in through the nose and out through the mouth. Stay aware on the fluctuations of the breath.
- Notice and check: Take a while to settle in. Observe the posture and notice sensations where the body touches the chair and feet. Acknowledge your sensations, notice anything from your senses.
- Scan the body: Scan the body from head to toe, observing any discomfort or tension. Simply take note of it and not change it.
- Notice your thoughts: Watch your thoughts as if they were passing clouds, no attempt to alter them. Try and watch them with no judgement and response.
- Allow your mind to be free: Spend a few minutes just sitting. You may experience inundation of thoughts or plans or may just feel calm and focused. The outcome isn’t important, just allow the mind to simply be.
- Prepare to finish: Feel the sensations of touch, the chair beneath you, the floor your feet are placed on, your arms resting on your lap. Notice the sensations while gently attempting to open your eyes.
- Whenever you're ready, open your eyes.
Benefits of Meditation
- Creativity, divergent thinking, problem solving: It can help in rewiring the brain. Studies have shown that meditation helps people in getting out of mental ruts. They switched strategies relatively quicker to find solutions.
- Improves performance in exercise and sports: Studies have shown that sports athletes who frequently practiced meditation showed higher resilience, longer attention and improved mood. Reducing stress and increase in attention and focus are some of the psychological traits required to achieve a far better athletic performance.
- Tolerance to pain: Meditation is responsible for lowering the activity in the pain receptor of the brain, which increases the pain tolerance. If practiced in the long run, it can drastically increase pain tolerance. Pain is after all information the body sends to the brain, and meditation can change how that information is interpreted.
- It is also very often associated to happiness, self-esteem, gratitude, body positivity, focus.
Meditation is a highly useful tool that can be used in one's daily regime. It provides innumerable benefits, and is a pivotal step to leading a conscious lifestyle. Why not start your practice today? Purchase one of our eco-friendly cork yoga mat and block to start your practice. Fully sustainable made from all natural materials for better meditation sitting comfort.