Meditation can seem a bit tricky to beginners who do not have proper guidance to rely on. Here’s our easy guide on how to get started.
What is meditation?
Meditation is a mindful training that consists of definite principles and techniques like breathing, control of the senses, concentration, and mantras which help attain higher levels of consciousness, sharpen awareness and make it easier to achieve a more peaceful and stable state.
There are a variety of meditation styles since each of them requires different skills and mindsets. Some of them include:
What is meditation for?
There are many preconceived beliefs about the concept of meditating.
Many people believe that meditation is solely a religious and spiritual practice, close to a prayer, that allows the soul to connect with God or the universe on a much deeper level.
They also claim that it merely serves to clear the mind of negative thoughts and relax. However, its purpose is far greater than that. Meditation is not a whimsical but a science-backed method used to enhance the functioning of the brain and the well-being of the soul.
Luckily, you don’t have to figure out all the complexities of meditation on your own. Seeking help from a professional or simply downloading a powerful meditation app will do just the trick. If you ask us, we’d recommend checking out Black Lotus.
Black Lotus is a guided meditation app founded by Om Swami, a celebrated Indian monk and expert meditator. Black Lotus encourages its users to use meditation as a tool to become more kind, productive, happy, and enlightened in one’s life.
It uses a comprehensive framework called R.A.R.E. (Reflect. Act. Reinforce. Evaluate) to help users fight gloominess, loneliness, better their relationships, control their emotions, practice mindfulness and feel more grateful.
Union between mind and body
Mindfulness meditation focuses on the interactions among the mind, the body and behavior. In addition, it also concentrates on one’s awareness by bringing their senses to the present and helping them understand the events in the brain.
This assists in being more conscious and able to distinguish reality from delusions which further helps instill positive effects on your emotional health and psychological well-being. Meditation improves one’s inner peace and helps manage negative emotions like stress, fear, and anger because it helps redirect thoughts.
Control over emotions
Meditation helps clear the mind. One who meditates regularly gains the ability to understand his emotions better and starts having control over them. The most common reason why people opt for meditation is stress reduction.
During the process, you divert your attention from negative thoughts and focus more on how you are feeling in the current moment, on your breathing rhythm, and the physical sensations in your body too. Adding to that, less stress means less anxiety.
Therapeutic for mental illnesses
Studies have proved that mindfulness can treat people with mental illnesses such as depression, for instance, since it decreases levels of inflammatory cytokines in the body. So, meditation does not only affect psychological health but also physical health.
Research has found that meditation and mindfulness practices may significantly reduce pain, fatigue, lower blood pressure, and help people recover more rapidly from cold or flu. Moreover, it helps regulate metabolism, boost the immune system and improve heart rate and brain waves.
10 tips to get started with meditation
1. Start small
Most people who get into meditation and quit immediately after do so before they end up setting unrealistic goals. It’s important to remember that meditation is not an achievement, nor a destination. For beginners, the best way to ensure commitment to meditation is to start small. For instance, meditating just 3-5 minutes a day.
2. Consider why you want to meditate
It is not easy to form a habit, and motivation often decreases with time as you face new challenges. This is why it is significant to list down all the reasons that pushed you to take up meditation, so they eventually incite you if you ever decide to give up.
3. Ignore the how and get started
There is no right or wrong way to meditate. It is a flexible practice. You can start with the basics then add to them as you get more comfortable and used to it.
4. Create a meditation space
The environment can differ to each person; some people like to meditate indoors, while others prefer to be in nature. As long as the place is calm, and quiet, so as not to disturb your meditation, it is good enough.
5. Find a community
Motivation begins within the individual and gets even stronger when being engaged in a community that supports and shares the same goals as you. It also makes meditation more fun and will help you stick to it longer.
6. Choose a meditation method
Meditation comes in all shapes and forms. As a beginner, it is better to experiment with different types until you find the one that is more suitable for you then turn it into a regular practice.
7. Be an observer
It is good to notice the change in your emotions and feelings before and after meditation so you can evaluate the progress and see whether you need to make any changes to the exercise.
8. When is the ideal time to meditate?
There is no ideal time to meditate. You can create your own meditating schedule depending on when you are available and on your emotional needs as well.
9. Get to know yourself
This practice allows you to gain an insight about yourself and helps you experience self-discovery by outlining your triggers, evaluating your feelings. It also gives you a better perception and awareness of the world around you.
10. No thoughts, no meditation
One of the most widespread myths about meditation is that if thoughts arise during the practice, you are not meditating correctly. There is no harm in having thoughts while meditating. If you feel your mind wandering, simply redirect your focus on your breath and senses.
Thank you for reading our guide. We hope it added some value to your life and helped you get started in your meditation and mindfulness journey.