One of the most common questions we hear is “Do you meditate?”
And when we say YES, the next questions are almost always a mix of:
“HOW do you do that?!”
“What do you do?”
“How do you sit?”
“Is there a book to read?”
“If I try it and nothing happens, am I doing it wrong?”
“How long do you sit there?”
We LOVE those questions. It means that more and more people are interested in meditation and mindfulness – and the incredible benefits that meditation can provide. Some researchers have found that as little as 12 minutes a day of meditation over an eight-week period can produce noticeable changes in the brain, decrease levels of anxiety, and increase immune function and overall happiness and well-being.
Here are a few tips from our team to help you get started with our March 2018 Meditation Immersion. Meditation is “simple” to begin, in the sense that you don’t need anything or anyone to do it – but it’s not always easy.
So let’s dig in!
Create a meditation space for yourself that is inviting and cozy so that you want to spend time in it. Use pillows, candles, crystals, plants, or anything that brings you calm. Not only will you be tempted to spend time in the space you create, but it will also be a reminder to get your meditation practice in!
Be patient with yourself and let go of any expectations you have about meditation. Take a deep breathe and release what you think your meditation practice should look like, feel like, and sound like. Allow yourself to just be, without judgment or negativity about whether you are doing it right or wrong.
Two things:1. Sit in a dark closet with a crazy person.2. Throw your cell phone in the toilet.I’m kidding, but I also mean it! I always offer those funny tips when I am leading workshops. I want to help break the seriousness of your expectations now. When you begin to meditate, it truly feels like you are in a dark closet with a crazy person because you are listening to all those thoughts swirling. That’s okay. We’ve all been there.EVERYONE needs the proverbial “flush” of the phone. I often tell people to let their battery run out overnight while they sleep. That way, in the morning – it can’t be used. You plug it in, walk away, and meditate.
Let your thoughts float.Don’t try to push all your thoughts away. When I first started meditating, I thought I needed to have a completely clear mind to do it “right.” Problematically, I am almost always thinking about at least 46 things – so I got frustrated FAST. Luckily a teacher came into my life who suggested thinking about my thoughts the way I think about clouds in the sky. Clouds are there and you can see them, but you don’t invest energy into them. You just sort of acknowledge them and let them float by.Even now, about 7 years after that conversation, I visualize clouds at the beginning of my meditation practice. I come back to that visual whenever I need to find the float.
If you are like me, you think you need to take on new projects with a certain level of intensity. That whole “go hard or go home” mentality (probably from my high school soccer days).With meditation, I highly recommend the way of the turtle: slow and steady. When I began meditating I started with a candle, a cushion, and five deep breaths. Commit to something you KNOW you can handle and watch it grow.
It’s easy to say “I’ll meditate every single day,” but then forget to do it – or find yourself waaaaaaaay too over-worked and overwhelmed to actually do it. Take the stress out of your meditation by setting a reminder to do it each morning when you wake up.
Join Our Meditation Immersion!
16 Days. 5-10 Minutes a Day. 1 Breath at a Time.