The ABCs of Meditation and 8 Simple Steps to Finding Inner Peace!
We live in a world filled with stressors. Daily life can be a roller coaster ride. Trying to find the time to step off that ride can seem insurmountable but taking the time to do just that can be healing and provide inner peace. Committing to a very brief daily practice of meditation can really help bring a harried person a little glimpse of balanced inner peace.
Choosing to begin a daily meditation practice can be life changing if we allow that to occur. A few simple beginning notes:
A. Make a plan to meditate by dedicating yourself to the practice (try not to be literal, be flexible), i.e. on Monday, meditate on your train ride home; Tuesday, mediation begins after breakfast before heading to work; Wednesday, meditation begins before bed, etc. Make your plan work for you, not against you.
B. Keep it simple. In the beginning, choose three to five minutes of quiet time.
C. Be gentle with yourself. Remember meditation is a practice and like anything new we get better the more we do it. Do not expect perfection the first few times out.
Once these basics are in place then you can really get started.
1. Choose a comfortable place to relax without interruption, the couch, your favorite chair, your bed, or outside under a tree. Begin with three to five minutes during your first few weeks.
2. If you’re an audiophile, choose your favorite instrumental music. No lyrics as this can lead you into the musical connection that can lead you astray. Good choices are calm meditation music, classical, Native American flute, etc. Headphones are ideal for this part of your meditation.
3. Choose a relaxing position. You do not need to sit up with your legs folded. Lie down, be on your tummy, or lean back in your train seat. Just be comfortable.
4. Set a timer or alarm of some fashion. Remember, three to five minutes.
5. Close your eyes and keep them closed until you hear the timer.
6. Begin by focusing on your breathing. In and out. In and out. Other thoughts will pop into your head. In the beginning this is normal. Take a slow deep breath and continue your breathing focus. If you have to restart this a dozen times, do just that. No pressure for perfection.
7. When your timer goes off… Smile! Stretch. Take pride in the fact that you nurtured yourself for a few moments in a very healthy way. Take a moment to be grateful for the opportunity.
8. Repeat this meditation routine every day until three to five minutes feels like not enough time. Eventually work up to a twenty minute daily meditation.
Utilizing these simple approaches to a beginning meditation routine can be the most valuable gift you give yourself. The Mayo Clinic states that by simply taking a small amount of time in meditation you can restore your calm and inner peace. A moment of inner peace could be the one thing missing from a hectic life.