6 ways to help you start meditating

6 ways to help you start meditating

Considered the ultimate anti-stress solution, meditation is a workout for the soul. Several studies have revealed the benefits of meditation on:

  • concentration and attention
  • the immune system
  • sleep
  • short-term memory
  • mood (like happiness, empathy, enthusiasm)
  • blood pressure

But the benefits of meditation don’t stop there. Researchers in Quebec concluded that treating meditation enthusiasts costs 14% less than treating those who don’t practice this relaxation technique.

Where to start?

You need a few things to start meditating at home.

The right place

Being calm is a must. Avoid distractions. If this means leaving the house to not be disturbed, then do it. Candles, mood lighting, soft music, ambient temperature… bring all those conditions together to create a peaceful, soothing environment.

The right time

Determine the time of day that is best for you. Whether you want to invigorate your chakra at dawn… or alleviate all the accumulated tension at sundown… be sure to find the perfect moment. The right state of mind rarely happens on its own, so we must help things along a little, whether it’s at the office, on the bus, in a line… just not in the car! Be disciplined. Your sessions must always be at the same time and last the same amount of time.

The right position

 

There are several positions for meditation. The important thing is choosing the one that makes you forget your own body.

Your back must be straight. Create enough space to extend your spine and relax your solar plexus. To release tensions, lower your shoulders and tuck in your chin. If you are numb or uncomfortable, continue and try to understand what is causing this in your body. If the pain does not dissipate, then your position is wrong. Move around a bit to release the tension and change position. Lying down is not recommended because the objective of meditation is not to sleep.

The right look

To encourage concentration, your eyes must be nearly closed. Focus on a point approximately 1 meter in front of you. Don’t daydream, just focus. Some prefer to keep their eyes closed to avoid being distracted by an object or light. However, you mustn’t doze off.

The right respiration

Breathing during meditation is an art. In fact, when you’re able to focus solely on your breathing, you’ll have reached the highest state of consciousness or Samadhi. The key to proper breathing relies on depth. Breathe air into your lungs until your rib cage rises. Hold your breath for a few seconds, then breathe out slowly. Throughout this exercise, become aware of the sensations that inhabit you and let slowness eventually settle in.

The right state of mind

Contrary to what you believe, the objective is not to think about nothing, but to accept the thoughts you have while meditating. Fighting these thoughts is futile. You have to let them come and go, without judging them.

Tip: stay disconnected from your thoughts, like you were watching a movie. If your thoughts take up too much space in your mind, concentrate on your breathing and recite your mantra, Hmmm.

Meditate with an app

If you need help meditating, there’s an app for that.

Free ones

Calm Headspace Omvana
iPhone iPhone iPhone
Android Android Android

Not free ones

Buddhify Meditation Timer Pleine conscience
iPhone iPhone iPhone
Android   Android

For more information

Mindful.org

How to meditate

Tips for Making Meditation A Family Practice