Meditation isn’t about sitting quiet and hopefully trying to close your mind. There are various techniques to help you relax and as you will learn, ‘open’ your mind, to new thoughts and experiences.
Here are some brief descriptions of a few of the most popular ways for you to consider which may be easier for you. Over time you will get better at it and may want to experiment and try different ways.
- Deep Breathing or Breath Focus: Involves closing your eyes and focusing all of your attention on the experience of your breath filling your lungs and leaving your body. This is the basis of most meditative practices and many methods build upon this.
- Body Scanning or Muscle Relaxation: This method is used primarily for relaxation. It involves paying attention to different parts of your body in sequence, allowing yourself to tense and then relax each part, paying attention to how each part feels during the process.
- Energy Focus: Focusing your attention on the energy that flows through you and finding a sense of being “centered” or “grounded,” meaning a place of relaxed and empowered wholeness. May also involve the use of “chakras” or centers of energy.
- Gazing: Instead of having your eyes closed, you can choose to focus your gaze on an object such as the flame of a candle.
- Visualisation: Entails closing your eyes and focusing your attention on an image of a peaceful place, such as a beach, a mountain, or a favorite hiking trail.
- Guided Imagery: Involves listening to a teacher or a pre-recorded track to guide you through peaceful images and engage your senses.
- Mantra: Involves repeating a word, syllable, or phrase many times, either in your mind or out loud.
- Music: Involves listening to soothing sounds of bells, harps, stringed instruments, wind instruments, and nature sounds while focusing on your breathing.
- Yoga: This exercise is actually a form of meditation, as each movement is carried out slowly and methodically, paying attention to the breath and energy in the body. It is especially effective when paired with a beautiful setting in nature or meditative music.
- T’ai Chi: A form of meditative martial arts that allows the user to focus attention on the inner energy flowing through the body.
- Qi Gong: Combines relaxation, meditation, movement, and breathing exercises to restore and maintain a sense of balance. Focuses on the Chinese concept of Qi, or energy, particularly concentrated around the spine, torso, and forehead.
- Walking Meditation: Walking can be used as a form of meditation when the user focuses attention on the feeling of movement, allowing all other thoughts to pass by. This is one of the most versatile practices because it can be completed while walking down the hall at work, on the sidewalk, or out in nature.
- Insight or Mindfulness Meditation: Involves practicing mindfulness onnthe random stream of inner thoughts, feelings, and sensations as they flow by. It includes a focus on the present state of being as opposed to future or past events.
- Positive Affirmations: Entails focusing on the positive thoughts that will help you accomplish your goals. Examples include, “I am successful,” “I am loved,” “I am able to do this,” or “I can do anything I set my mind to.”
- Reading Reflection or Quiet Time: Involves reading a poem, sacred text, or scripture and reflecting upon its meaning or personal impact. Can also be paired with spoken word, sacred music, or journaling.
- Movement Meditation: Involves attaining a sense of groundedness or centeredness and then allowing your body to move in various ways, focusing on the feelings of your body.
Love & Light