Meditating on a consistent, daily basis shouldn’t be viewed as “taking time away” from your schedule. Rather, it’s an opportunity to honor your life by devoting the time needed to center yourself every day so you can face the obstacles around you with a vivacious, courageous spirit. It’s just as important in your life as eating and sleeping. Let’s look at what meditation can accomplish for you, and how you can start meditation today.
Benefits of Meditating on a Consistent Basis
Experience peace of mind (reduce mental chatter)
Increase your ability to focus and concentrate
Improve efficiency while reducing anxiety
Measurably decrease stress levels
Lower your blood pressure naturally
Reverse the aging process
Increase your energy level
Enhance your intuition
Basic Instructions for Meditating
- Make a decision to schedule your meditation on a regular basis, allowing 20-30 minutes in the morning and afternoon or early evening.
- Try to sit in the same place as often as possible, even if the morning and afternoon locations are different.
- Eliminate as many disturbances as possible: shut off phones, give your children an activity to do, put pets in a place they will not disturb you, and let people know when you expect to be finished.
- Set a timer and muffle it if the alarm is a jarring noise. Sit up straight with your eyes closed, your feet on the floor and your hands unfolded resting palms down on your lap. If you’re more comfortable on the floor, sit cross-legged on a comfortable pillow or zabuton.
- Gently and calmly focus your attention on your breath.
- Every time your attention drifts away from your breath to a thought, feeling, sensation in the body, disturbance in your environment or a vision, gently return to focusing on your breath.
- At some point, you will have no thoughts and the awareness of your own breathing will fade. This is magical! You are wide awake, totally alert, conscious and aware, but not of anything in particular. You have experienced what it is like to simply BE. Remember, we are human beings, not human doings!
What to Expect During Your Practice
You might become restless and bored; this is all the more reason to sit and concentrate.
You might fall asleep, in which case you should search for the reason behind this reaction.
You will arrive at the time where you have no thoughts or awareness of breath, although you won’t realize you are in this place until after you have your first conscious thought.
Once you’ve begun practicing meditation consistently, you’ll be amazed at how your day-to-day life runs more smoothly than before. Taking the time to honor the life and energy inside you will have a profound impact on both your own existence and your surroundings.