Thursday, 7 April 2016

Five ways to start meditating

Five ways to start meditating 

When I tell people that I am a yoga and meditation teacher, the most common question I get asked is ‘how do you start meditating?' Therefore I thought that this should be my first blog. I work in the corporate environment and I see people everyday that would benefit from meditation. 

Meditation to me is quieting the mind or slowly letting your thoughts drift away so that you can actively rest your mind. For many meditation is really difficult, we live in a face paced and energetic world where we need to be ‘on’ all the time. I often find myself telling people that it is ok to take a break, it is ok to put yourself first and you will be much more productive once you give yourself some mental space. I have put together five practical ways to help you start meditating, these are simple techniques for beginners or anyone wanting to explore different ways of meditation.

 Five different ways to start meditating:

1. Use a guided meditation, this is really good for beginners and there are heaps of meditations available on Youtube, just search for guided meditation and thousands will come up. Youtube is a great resource and easily available. To assist in finding a good guided meditation I use; 
  • Lisa Beachy 
  • Louise Hay 
  • Doreen Virtue 
These are my guided meditations. However, there are so many to choose from, try a few and I guarantee you will find one you like. There are also heaps of meditation apps available through the app store.  

2. Listening to music is a favourite way to meditate. I use Om music, bells or soft music to create a relaxed environment. You can also purchase specific meditation music from iTunes if you want to save it on your phone. Otherwise Youtube is another resource.   

3. A Yoga Nidra is a an excellent relaxation technique and again is readily available on Youtube or apps. I find Yoga Nidra one of the best ways to meditate especially for people that are very tired and time poor as a Yoga Nidra is a great way to re-energise yourself. Yoga Nidra is a great meditation to do during the day (early afternoon) as a pick me up.

4. Breath awareness. Again Youtube is a great reference guide. Just focusing on your breath is really powerful, as humans our breath is our pathway to life and I know that I often forget this. Therefore we need to focus on deep breathing into our diaphragm and belly. When we are stressed we breath only into the upper chest therefore we need to deepen our breath to increase the flow of energy through our bodies. Deep breathing is relaxing and helps with stress and anxiety. 

5. Attend a meditation or yoga class. As obvious as this sounds, there are local classes everywhere that offer different types of yoga and meditation.  Look for a beginners class and please don’t be put off because everyone looks really flexible. Yoga is an inside job so just do it to the best of your own ability. This is one of the main reasons why I became a teacher as it is your own individual practice that matters. Many teachers also offer private yoga or meditation classes if you want to get your own teacher.            

Remember that meditation is a personal experience and many people find it extremely difficult as there their minds are very active. I have found that meditation is a process and you do get better at it over time. Even if you just sit down, close your eyes and observe your thoughts you are making huge headway.  Please don't get frustrated just try it for 5 or 10 minutes to begin with and you can progress in your own time and in your own style.

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