Before you start on your journey to finding inner peace, it’s important that you understand a few basic meditation tips. Click here to become enlightened…
Meditation helps reduce stress. Everyone knows that.
But did you know that practicing meditation can also increase your resilience to stress? It not only takes care of the current stress you are feeling, but it equips you to handle more stressful things in your life without feeling all the negative effects.
While the health and wellness benefits of meditation are undeniable, many people find starting the practice of meditation to be daunting. Don’t be one of those people who let uncertainty stop them from changing their life.
Read on to see how you can set yourself up for success and a life of less stress with basic meditation practices.
9 Basic Meditation Tips for Beginners
The following 9 tips will help you get the right mindset about meditation. Try one or use all nine!
These tips will make meditation, and all its wellness benefits, more accessible to anyone.
- Start Small
Thinking you are going to jump right into meditation for an hour every day is, simply, ridiculous. No one has the time or dedication to stick with an unrealistic goal like that.
Set a small goal that you can actually achieve. Three to five minutes per day of meditation is much more reasonable. If even that seems too much, commit to three focused breaths per day.
As you notice the positive effects of meditation in your daily life, you will organically increase the amount of time you commit to mindfulness.
Start small and work up from there.
- Don’t Succumb to All-Or-Nothing Thinking
Realistically, carving out a chunk of your day at the exact same time, seven days a week, for a pre-determined number of minutes, doesn’t work for most people’s schedule.
It’s okay if you can only do a couple of minutes today, more tomorrow and fewer the day after that. You haven’t failed because you didn’t stick to a rigid schedule.
Believing that this commitment to meditation is an all-or-nothing ultimatum will set you up for failure.
Informal mediation practices can provide the same health and wellness benefits as formal meditation. It may be something as simple as taking a few deep breathes each time you complete a task or begin a new one.
- Stay Comfortable
You can sit on the floor. You can sit in a chair. You can lay in the grass.
Find a space and position that is comfortable for you. Typically, a quiet room where you won’t be disturbed is a good idea.
If you choose to sit, try to exercise good posture. Being in tune with your body and feeling the sensation of your breath is easier if you sit up tall.
Above all else, make the experience easy and comfortable for you. If it isn’t, you won’t stick with it.
- Feel Your Breath
Something as simple as focusing your energy on your breathing pattern can provide the benefits of meditation.
By redirecting your attention and thoughts to something experiential, such as feeling your chest open up as you breathe in, you can take a break from overthinking emotional worries, such as your to-do list for tomorrow.
It’s okay to notice that your mind wanders away from your breath during meditation. It’s to be expected, especially when you are just beginning the practice.
- Start the Day with Mindfulness
Before the chaos of life takes over your day and stresses you out, set aside a minute for meditation.
Starting the day with a quick meditation or moment of mindfulness can alter your thought patterns and mindset for the remainder of the day.
Thought is powerful. Use it to your advantage to make your day more relaxed.
- Accept the Wandering
Your thoughts and concentration will wander. It’s inevitable. Be gentle with yourself and accept that the wandering is natural.
As you devote more time to meditation, it becomes easier to block out distractions and focus wholly. Until then, it’s okay to fail at perfect meditation.
Count your breaths, with no goal number of breaths in mind. When you notice your mind has started to wander, start your count back at “1”. This will refocus your mind in a constructive way that does not punish you for being human.
- Be Aware of Your Body
If focusing on the sensation of your breath does not work for you, try this instead. Focus on the awareness of your body.
Start at your toes and work your way slowly up each body part. As your focus shifts between body parts, assess for pain, tension, and other sensations. Give the appendage a small wiggle to connect sensation to movement.
Slowly, work your way up to the top of your head.
Instead of focusing repeatedly on one sensation, like breathing, this technique calls for a moving point of focus.
- Use a Meditation Guide
Meditation is successful when you can focus your attention on something experiential or concrete, instead of emotional or mental.
Breathing and awareness of your body are not concrete enough for some practitioners of meditation. In these instances, a meditation aid can add to the experience.
Try downloading a guided meditation or employing meditation malas to keep you grounded during the meditation experience.
At the end of each meditation or moment of mindfulness, remember to smile. You have done something good for your mental and emotional well-being. You deserve to feel good about it.
Leaving your meditation with a happy and satisfied feeling will create positive reinforcement for continuing to meditate. You set yourself up for continued success when you take a minute to acknowledge that yes, you completed a meditation; and yes, it felt good; and yes, you’re going to meditate again tomorrow.
Reap the Benefits of Meditation
Whether you choose to try one or nine or zero of these tips, meditation can be a unique experience that you dictate. Decide on a method that works for you and start reaping the benefits of reduced daily stress and increased resilience to future stress.
Looking for more ways to incorporate basic meditation into your daily routine? Check out this article on combining yoga and mindfulness.