Don’t be fooled. Meditation is much more than simply closing your eyes and relaxing. It isn’t just about finding a comfortable place to relax your mind; it’s about bringing awareness to your mind, body and spirit.
It’s about aligning your chakras to bring balance to your body’s energies, and it’s about slipping into a deep realm of relaxation that is almost impossible to experience without daily practice.
So, if you’re looking to take yourself on an inner journey that will restore and rejuvenate your mind, body and spirit, but have absolutely no idea where to start, you’ve come to the right place. Consider this your crash course on meditation for beginners.
This beginner’s guide to meditation focuses specifically on mindful meditation, but the steps can easily be switched out to suit other forms of meditation. For example, instead of closing your eyes for mindful meditation, you can look at your mandala for visual meditation or stare at your mala beads for concentration meditation.
So, let’s get started!
The first – and inarguably, the most important step to starting meditation is to create a comfy space. It can be a room, a corner or even outside. It just has to be quiet, distraction-free and peaceful.
Fortunately, even the most hectic environments can be transformed into a meditation space by adding different elements in, such as a meditation pillow, and removing other items, such as clutter.
As a rule of thumb, your comfy space could be quiet, clean, comfortable and peaceful.
Now that you have your comfy space, it’s time to get comfy. Sit on your meditation pillow, cross your legs (lotus pose), and softly rest your hands in your lap. If you can’t cross your legs comfortably, move your meditation pillow to a chair and plant your feet on the ground.
The most important thing is to remain comfortable with a strong posture, relaxed and connected to the ground. So, don’t stress about this too much.
The key to entering that deep realm of meditation is to breathe slowly and deeply. So, begin by closing your eyes and directing your attention to your breathing. Inhale slowly through your nose, filling your diagram with air. Now pause, and then slowly exhale from your mouth, emptying out all of the air.
Continue doing this naturally and deeply, and with every breath, you should start to feel them becoming fuller and deeper, but don’t push it. Just let your deep breaths come naturally.
Now it’s time for some mindfulness. As you continue to breathe deeply, focus on any tensions or sensations in your body. Wiggle your toes, relax your face, and slowly work your way through your body, bringing attention to different areas and sensations.
As a beginner, you may find your mind straying away from time to time, and that’s completely normal.
The key is to become aware of when you’re distracted, so you can bring your attention back to your breathing and body.
It’s that simple! You can remain in step four for as long as you feel, and when you’re ready to come out of your meditation, simply redirect your attention by wiggling your toes, slowly opening your eyes, stretching out your fingers, and entering back into reality.
You may find that these steps are often easier said than done, and at first, they may very well be. However, with daily practice of a minimum of 5 minutes, you will find that you’re able to enter that deep realm of relaxation and mindfulness better, deeper, easier and longer as time goes on. We recommend reading The Joy of Living to help you get an even deeper understanding of meditation and mindfulness.
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