Why Meditate and How to do it?
So how do you meditate?
Firstly, find a nice quiet spot and get comfortable. You don’t need to sit in the lotus position, sit on a chair or lie on your bed, as long as you are comfy to be still for a bit. If all the quiet is freaking you out (yes it happens) turn on some calm, quiet music or download an app with music specifically for meditation. Just make sure that the TV and other noisy interruptive appliances are off.
Wear seriously comfortable clothing, there is no way that you will find inner peace if your pants are so tight that you cannot breathe. Yoga pants or tracksuits are best as they are nice and stretchy also take off your shoes. If the weather or your meditation spot is cooler, wear a sweatshirt or jersey, stay warm but not hot.
Decide how long you want to meditate. Before you begin, you should decide how long you are going to meditate. While many seasoned meditators recommend twenty-minute sessions twice a day, beginners can start out doing as little as five minutes, a day. It all depends on your schedule and needs. Try to meditate at the same time each day, as with many things schedule makes a difference.
Stretches, while not necessary, will make a major difference. So, take 5 minutes and stretch like you are about to run a marathon.
Okay, so now you are comfortable and you have a quiet space but how do you meditate?
Close your eyes and start breathing slowly. In through your nose for five counts and out though your mouth for five counts. Continue like this until you can feel yourself relaxing.
Now focus on your muscles, starting with your hands and feet relax your limbs slowly, through your arms and legs until you reach your face.
Now for the difficult bit, clear your mind. Focus on something visual or a mantra and bring your focus down to just that. Don’t worry if you do not manage this the first time you try and meditate. Don’t give up on it and you will have success.
Some good mantras to start out with include words like one, peace, calm, tranquil, and silence. If you want to use more traditional mantras, you can use the word “Om” which symbolizes omnipresent consciousness, or the phrase “Sat, Chit, Ananda” which means “Existence, Consciousness, Bliss”.
In Sanskrit, the word mantra means “instrument of the mind”. The mantra is an instrument of focus and will help you reach a deeper state of mind. Silently repeat the mantra over and over to yourself as you meditate, allowing the word or phrase to whisper through your mind. Don’t worry if your mind wanders off, just refocus your attention and return to repeating the word.
When you become more adept at meditation you will not need a focus like a mantra anymore, although if it helps you; by all means; carry on.
Now visualize, what do you want to achieve with that meditation session? Focus for studying, relaxing after a day at school or perhaps inner peace before an exam.
When you feel more relaxed and focused you can slowly pull back to the real world. Carry on breathing slowly and open your eyes. Have a good stretch, you are now ready for anything.
There are many ways to meditate, some people walk and others can switch off and meditate at their desk. It is a personal experience and as you carry on you will find a method that works best for you.
Here is what a few famous people who meditate have to say:
“If you just sit and observe, you will see how restless your mind is. If you try to calm it, it only makes it worse, but over time it does calm, and when it does, there’s room to hear more subtle things- that’s when your intuition starts to blossom and you start to see things more clearly and be in the present more. Your mind just slows down, and you see a tremendous expanse in the moment. You see so much more than you could see before.” – Steve Jobs
“Massages are amazing. I also do Transcendental Meditation morning and afternoon. It’s so helpful to me, especially in this crazy industry.” – Jennifer Anniston
“I start the day with Transcendental Meditation. It puts me in the best mood. I wake up and just prop myself up in bed for 20 minutes. It’s the only time my mind gets absolute rest,” – Katy Perry
“Meditation and praying change your spirit into something positive. If it is already positive, it makes it better.” – Tina Turner
“I find meditation in sitting on the floor with the kids colouring for an hour, or going on the trampoline,” – Angelina Jolie