Meditation, at its best, is relaxing and effortless, but it can also be challenging when you’re just a beginner.
Meditation has been my thing for a couple of years now. It helped me become more calm and grounded and to start my day more appreciatively.
I won’t say it’s easy because it is not. You get better at it the more you practice. That’s why it is called a practice.
These tips will help you start a meditation practice and keep going.
- Start small by sitting for 5 minutes, and then increase the time by adding a few more extra minutes.
- Do it in the morning. I say this because if you do it in the morning, before your to-do list, it will give you energy, and you’ll start your day more mindfully. If you’re not a morning person, try to do the practice at the same time every day, making sure it becomes a habit.
- Check the way you feel. After settling into your meditation position, start by acknowledging how you feel. How is your mind? Busy? Tired? Anxious? Whatever you’re feeling, know it’s okay to feel what you feel. This is the reason you’re there. Then breathe into that feeling.
- Do a body scan. Notice how you feel within your body. What sensations are there in your legs? Do you feel your face or your toes? This will keep you connected to your body.
- Count the breaths. Meditation does involve focusing on the breath. Making sure you don’t get attached to it is the key. Allow things to unfold naturally, noticing the rising and falling sensation it creates in the body.
- Don’t get caught up in “I’m not doing it right.” By simply noticing things as they are. When you see your mind labeling, commenting, and making opinions about something, you’re judging. Just notice that, and let it go. Return your attention to your breathing.
- Get to know yourself. Meditation is a useful tool to get to know your mind and how it works. Just allowing yourself to see the thoughts that arise, you’ll begin to understand yourself.
- Try a guided meditation. Guided meditations are helpful because someone walks you through each step of the meditation. I find Headspace very helpful.
- Don’t try too hard. Whatever happens in your meditation session is okay. Meditation, at its best, is relaxing and effortless. So there is no real effort involved, just being consciously aware. So don’t work too hard at it.
- Acknowledge yourself when you’re done. Be grateful for showing up, doing the practice, and taking the time for your well-being.
- Commit to meditating for at least a month. This will allow you to acquire the basic skills and begin to see the real benefits it can bring.
Meditation can be challenging. Each practice is different and has much to do with how you feel that day. What is certain is that it has amazing benefits. I encourage you to start today.