You might be thinking, “I don’t have time for meditation!” or “My mind will never stop, that’s just the way I am.” or “Meditation is for people who don’t have families or jobs.”
We talked about three myths to meditation last week. This week you get the tools to start a practice so that you can discover the benefits of meditation for yourself (it’s just minor benefits like peace, joy, happiness, contentment, fulfillment, and purpose…).
Maybe someone has recommended it to you. Maybe you’ve thought about it a little, but never tried it. Maybe you’ve tried it, but decided it wasn’t for you or ran away because it was too uncomfortable “being” instead of “doing.”
I use to put off meditating – for years – because I thought I had to meditate for 30 min. a day and that seemed like an eternity!
Here are seven simple steps to bring it into your life, one day at a time.
- Make a commitment that you will do this for four weeks. Not just “try” it for a day or two. The word “try” gives you an easy out mentally. Say to yourself, “I will” do this for 1 month, and see what happens.
- Choose a place in your home you would like to do it. It could be your bedroom, office, living room, or spare room. Put a sign on the door or tell the people you live with that this is YOUR time and not to disturb you.
- Find a time of day that works for you. You can do it first thing when you get up, or last thing when you go to bed or anywhere in between. Many people find it best when they first rise (RPM – rise, pee, meditate), and others like before bed because it helps them fall asleep. Try both and see what works best for you.
- Set a timer for five minutes. There are great iphone apps out there with meditation timers that have beautiful chimes or a bell that goes off at five min. The timer helps you stay for the five min. without watching the clock.
- Sit with your back fairly straight up and down. You can sit on the floor or in a chair, or propped on pillows on your couch or bed. All is great! Just make sure you’re sitting up right. If you do it laying down, you are more likely to go sleep, and that is not the purpose!
- Eyes closed and hands gently folded in the lap or palm up or down on the legs. Relax your body to start along with taking a couple deep breaths. Consciously soften your shoulders, relax your jaw, your knees, and hands.
- Come back to the breath. Meditation is not about stopping thoughts, it’s about changing the relationship to your thoughts. Your mind will wonder – that’s it’s job. When you notice it wondering, bring your attention back to the breath as it moves in and out of the nose with compassion and kindness.
There you have it! You have just started your own meditation practice. Gradually increase the time over time. Each week add a couple of minutes tow or three times during the week, and commit to practice at least four times a week.
It’s also really helpful to be part of a meditation group for accountability, guidance, and direction.
Let me know what you experience and how it benefits your life!
Categories: Meditation & Mindfulness