What a wonderful feeling to be able to meditate—the calmness, the clarity and sense of peace that washes over us when we are able to tap into this stillness.
This may sound great, but in reality, it doesn’t come this easy to most of us.
Whether we have a somewhat established practice, or have never tried closing our eyes for more than a good night’s rest, these tips will help us establish a pretty simple and easy meditation practice.
Create a small comfortable space.
Find a pillow, a blanket or a cushion to sit on and keep it in the same place if possible. Mark this as your meditation territory! If you see the space already set up, it is much more enticing to move toward it, rather than having to find that one pillow, or move and clean up before trying to meditate.
Listen to music or a guided meditation.
Using earphones while listening to music or a meditation will allow any external sounds to disappear. No more car alarms, no more TV in the background—just you and whatever is streaming through the speakers. Some would say that it is important to be able to tune in, no matter what sounds are around you, but in reality, if the TV in the background is going to keep you from meditating for the limited time you have, block it out!
Time is of the essence.
This is the number one thing I hear people say: they never have enough time, let alone to spend it meditating. So I say two minutes. Really! Two minutes is all you need to tap into your breath, close your eyes and be present. You may find that two minutes will go by and you are still able to stay seated, keep breathing and the world will continue on around you. Stay here longer, as long as you’d like. Two may turn into five, 10 or 20.
Tell your phone to be quiet!
Turn your phone onto airplane mode if you can, or at least on silent. There is nothing worse than finding the sweet serene state of bliss in a meditation, only to have it interrupted by a call, text, tweet or Facebook message. If you are using your phone for a guided meditation, download it and then you should be able to turn your phone back into airplane mode.
Be flexible with the time of day.
You may feel that the morning is the best time of day for you to set your intentions, breathe and meditate, but you can never move your schedule around to actually do this! Be flexible, and try scheduling meditation time when you actually have free time. Try mediating before sleeping at night, or right after work. Observe the business of your day, when you have down time, and remember your patterns.
Move with your meditation.
If you are one who cannot sit still, no matter how many times you attempt to. Try a moving meditation. Walking/jogging in silence, being mindful while you chop your vegetables, cleaning, hobbies, painting and even reading can be meditative to the mind.
One thing to remember is to keep trying.
Do not judge yourself, and allow yourself to fidget, move, scratch your nose, come out of the meditation and come back in, as much as you need to! Be open, and receptive to yourself. Meditation is suppose to bring us closer to peace and joy.
“Peace while sitting, Joy while breathing. Peace is the sitting, Joy is the breathing.” ~ Thich Nhat Hanh
Love elephant and want to go steady?
Author: Mija Speakman
Editor: Cat Monkman
Photo: Alma Ayon/Flickr