Benefits Of Meditation:
- Lowers Blood Pressure
- Relaxes The Nervous System
- Relieves Muscle Tension
- Relieves Insomnia
- Quiets The Mind- Self-doubt and Internal Babbling
- Releases Fear
- Reduces Anxiety
- Helps With Depression
- Generates Positive Feelings- Optimism, Motivation, Self-Esteem, Confidence
- Diminishes Headaches/Migraines
- Balances Digestive Function
- Aides in Absorption of Nutrients
- Increases Memory
- Increases Creativity, Focus, and Productivity
- Emotional Balance
Recently, in my quest for more balance and spiritual enlightenment, I've been incorporating meditation (and yoga) and I'd liked to share my experiences and practices. Everyone is different (which is an amazing thing- embrace it) so we have to find our own routine. I'm still technically on my quest, but I have learned a lot thus far.
Tips To Try:
1. You don't have to sit in lotus position. "But, but, that's how it's always depicted!" Yes, it usually is, but the truth is it's about comfort, and that isn't the most comfortable position for everyone. You can pretty much do whatever feels comfortable for you. I personally can't lay down or I fall asleep, but if that works for you, it works for you. Try sitting in various positions and see what happens! It's all about finding what works specifically for you!
2. Get a sleep mask. I have been getting up in the morning and venturing into my living room for my morning session. My living room is also flooded with morning light, which I love, but is very distracting. I bought a sleep mask at Target (on sale for $3.50), and I'm so glad I did! It helps me block out that bright light and focus.
3. I also live on a busy street, and it's pretty much busy all the time. Outside noises can be very distracting, so I've been on the search for some meditative music and sounds. I haven't found exactly the perfect combination for me yet, but I'm on the trek and I'm confident I'll find the perfect match. Not to say I haven't found sounds that help, but just not the perfect match. I know that might not seem helpful, but here are some resources that are worth checking out: YouTube (try searching "Meditation Sounds", "Meditation Music", "Guided Meditation") Relax Melodies App, Calm App, and Spotify has some good channels as well.
4. Try counting back from 100, then when you reach 1 start from 30 and count back for a total of 130 counts. This helps you focus on the counting and eventually quiet your mind.
5. Try mentally relaxing your body piece by piece. You simply picture each piece in your mind and relax it. I start with my toes, then my feet, then my lower legs... you get the point, do this all the way up to your head. You can also try using this method in conjunction with #4.
6. Breathing is important as well. Your breathing patterns will help relax you. There are many methods, and again you have to find what's right for you, but for me deep mindful breathing works. Notice the breath as it moves into your body, inhale thoughtfully, and then notice your breath as you exhale. Your breath should move in and out effortlessly, and if your mind begins to wander, just bring your attention back to the breathing. For me this has taken a bit of extra concentration, but the more I meditate the easier it gets. That's something I can attest to, everything becomes easier.
Try a combination of things, like I said before, there is no set way to meditate, it's all about what feels right for you. I'm still on my journey, but I promise you what I've experienced so far is worth it.
Chakras From Bottom (Root) To Top (Crown):
- The Muladhara (Root) chakra.
- The Svadhisthana (Sacral) chakra.
- The Manipura (Solar Plexus) chakra.
- The Anahata(Heart) chakra.
- The Visuddhi (Throat) chakra.
- The Ajna (Third eye) chakra.
- The Sahasrara (Crown) chakra.
Check out The 7 Chakras For Beginners for more information. This is very informative and describes what each chakra is and what it represents. I'm still figuring out chakras, and I will definitely update once I do!
I hope this helps you with tackling meditation. I highly recommend meditating even if you aren't on a spiritual journey (although I'm sure it will turn into one), because it can help with a myriad of different aliments, discomforts, and overall well being.