How does one start meditating?
In a prior blog, I explained about the many benefits of meditation. Chances are, with all the positive effects that meditation has, meditation is gaining popularity as a way to reduce stress and gain mental focus. I welcome all newcomers to the meditation lifestyle, and I’m happy to see so many new inductees. However, meditation can be hard to get into – it’s not like a game of basketball or knitting a scarf – there is no tangible “end product” that tells you if you’re doing it right or not. So, I’d like to take some time to help new students of the meditation discipline get started on the right path to helpful, relaxing and invigorating meditation sessions. I’m here to help you start meditating.
How to begin meditating
The most difficult obstacle for new students of meditation to overcome is how to ignore the background noise that’s prevalent throughout our daily lives. Cell phones ringing, car horns honking, microwaves beeping and more all serve to clutter our attention. All of this noise serves to distract a person, which prevents a person from reaching any state of meditation. Beginners must train their consciousness to detach from these distractions. As with all types of training, it gets easier the more you do it. However, when you start meditating, be sure to follow these additional tips to keep you headed on the right path to the right meditation practices:
- Find the right place to meditate. Make it a place that you can be relatively free of distractions. If you have a room that has a window that overlooks a busy street, it would probably be best to try to meditate with the window open. You also may choose to designate an area that’s dedicated to meditation. Feel free to furnish it with soothing scents, rushing water, a meditation chair or bench, and other items that will make it easier to relax.
- Make sure you’re in the right state of mind. Meditation is a deep relaxation, and it’s not easy to relax when you’re wound up. Don’t try to meditate when you’re anxious, angry or stressed. It’s uncomfortable to try to sit still in this state of mind. Clear your mind before meditating. You’ll get more out of your session that way.
- Be comfortable. You’ll spend a good deal of time in a meditative state, so it’s best to make sure you will be comfortable. If you have back pain, we recommend investing in a meditation chair with a back, or better yet, an Omni Meditation Bench that will help to align your spine to find its natural curvature. You may also want to look into a meditation cushion.
- Don’t rush it. Like all new endeavors, meditation is something that takes time. Keep trying, clear your mind, and work to relax and find a meditative state you can hold, increasingly longer as you go. When finished with your meditation, transition to wakefulness slowly and gradually. A jarring snap of your eyes opening can undo the clarity you’ve attained. Don’t give up! It gets easier as you go, and you’ll soon be on your way to increased mental focus and the reduced levels of stress that meditation can bring.