We hear so much about meditation and its benefits, but many of us struggle to actually do it. For some, the idea of sitting in silence for 5 minutes, never mind 15 or 20 seems like an impossible feat. Thankfully, there are many forms of meditation. It’s just a matter of finding the one that works best for you!
Guided meditations are a great way to start. Instead of being left alone with all the thoughts running through your mind, you are guided by a voice that helps you to focus those thoughts. Whether these guided meditations contain affirmations or statements to help you with visualization, it won’t be long before you start to feel the benefits.
Mantras are also a great method to try if sitting in silence isn’t your thing. Much like guided meditations, mantras are used to help you focus your thoughts. Instead of affirmations or visualizations, mantras are short statements that you repeat for the duration of your meditation. They can be sung or said, accompanied by music, or on their own. Malas and prayer beads can be used to help you keep track of the number of repetitions.
If you are debating on whether or not meditation is for you, or you’re uncertain about its benefits, here’s what the Chopra Centre says are the physical benefits of meditation:
- Boots immune system
- Decreases inflammation
- Regulates blood sugar levels
- Lowers blood pressure
- Helps reduce heart disease
- Helps manage chronic pain
- Improves metabolism and aids in weight loss
If this list isn’t enough to get you to consider starting a meditation practice, consider the fact that meditation relaxes the mind, helps you sleep better and helps you to clear your mind when you need to make important decisions. Besides, couldn’t we all use a little more “me time”?
Like anything, to realize the benefits of meditation, consistency is the key. Find a time that works for you that you can schedule your daily practice. Whether you choose to do it first thing in the morning or last thing at night before you go to bed (or both!), it totally up to you. There are no steadfast rules to meditation. Sitting in Lotus pose chanting “Om” isn’t the only way to do meditation. A walk in nature can be mediation, playing with your children or pets can be a meditation. It’s taking a break from being overwhelmed by all the thoughts running through your mind!
What are your experiences with meditation? What techniques work for you? Share your thought and ideas in the comment section below!