Intro to Meditation
If you have never tried meditating before, but are up to trying something new that will benefit your entire life, you’ve come to the right place. I posted about the benefits of meditation here: ( How Meditation is Good for You) and now I will tell you how I do it, and how you can too!
To get the most out of my meditation, I prefer to wake up early. I get up at 4:30 am in order to get in a good hour for meditating and visualizing (which you can read about here: (I Can See the Future and So Can You! ) Don’t worry- you don’t have to do this in order to benefit from meditating. I’m not crazy, (at least not THAT crazy). I used to sleep as much as possible because hey, who doesn’t love sleep? However, after noticing the many benefits I was receiving by waking up early (to stretch, meditate, read, and enjoy some precious “me” time before the kids got up) I could never go back.
I used to think I didn’t have time to meditate or that it was a waste of the precious time I had. I was wrong. Now I KNOW that it is THE BEST way to spend my time, PERIOD! It starts my day off on the right track and has given me a sense of calm and peace that no amount of sleep ever could. It has helped my body relax and has benefited me even more than sleep, stretching, or massage- which is saying a lot!
It may not work for you, but for me, I haven’t even missed the sleep I’ve “lost” by getting up early! If you are not a morning person, do it when you feel like it- there really is no wrong time, although leading scientists and teachers of meditation say our subconscious mind is more reachable when you are in a sleepy state, (so it is most beneficial to do it in the morning or right before you go to bed at night). But you are your own master and know your body and mind better than anyone else, so do what makes sense in your schedule and your life. The point is to just do it- make time for it every single day. The more you meditate, the more you will want to do it.
How to Meditate
The following is a detailed description of how I meditate. FYI- I’m not a master meditator by any stretch, but this method works for me and will definitely get you started if you’ve never tried to quiet your mind before). My methods might be different than what you’ve heard, but its okay, we all do things differently! Feel free to copy me, if you’d like. If you want to learn more, I will give some resources at the end of the post, to guide you on your way.
I put on an eye mask (for me, the darker it is, the better the meditation).
This is just my preference, and totally not essential. If you don’t have a mask don’t worry, it won’t make your meditation worse. I’ve just found that for me it helps me to block out anything that might distract my mind and give me something to think about! Some people do it in the middle of the day, in a bright room, others use the flicker of a candle, some people can meditate while walking, so do what floats your boat!
I lie down on the floor. (most people like to sit up when meditating, but I find lying down to be more comfortable- as long as it isn’t too comfortable to put me back to sleep).
I actually multi-task and do my posture stretching while meditating (put some foam pillow things beneath my back to make me lie in a way that brings my back into alignment). It doesn’t really matter how you sit or lie, the point is to be comfortable enough that you can stay aware of yourself but not fall asleep. If a body part starts to fall asleep, move to a new position, again, there is no wrong way to do this. It is common to see people meditating in a criss-cross applesauce seated position, with their spine erect and their hands on their knees with palms facing upwards (at least that is the stereotypical way you see the monks do it). I’m just a novice, but the point is to allow yourself to be comfortable enough to get the energy flowing in your body and to align yourself with a higher power. (I will talk more about this in an upcoming post about Chakras).
After getting into position, I start the timer on my watch and lie down for 30 minutes *I’d do it longer if I didn’t have to get my kids up for school!
There is no right or wrong amount of time to meditate. You can do it for as little as 5 minutes to several hours or all day (like some monks). The goal is to get to the point where you can listen to your body and see when it is reacting to your meditation- when you feel calm or uplifted by the experience. Some leading experts, like Abraham Hicks say that you can get as much benefit from 15 minutes as from 2 hours (what Dr. Joe Dispenza says works best for him). Just fit what you can into your day and you won’t be disappointed.
Most of the time, I start with some deep breathing to get my body into a relaxed state. I pay attention to every inhale and exhale until I no longer have to in order to have my mind under control. Then, I listen to the sound of the fan that my husband has by his side of the bed and try to think of nothing but that sound. Sometimes I prefer finding a guided meditation on You-tube, or listening to binaural beats. Just find whatever soothes you the most and doesn’t distract your mind and make you think.
Let the fan lull you until you get to the point where you are not thinking about anything at all.
I become aware of the blackness and state of no thought. (For some, the thought of having no thought and being in blackness might sound scary, but trust me, it is amazing!). You will feel a sense of peace and love that is unlike anything else- that is the place you want to be when practicing meditation.
When I get to that point, it feels like my mind becomes more awake and alive than ever. I feel like I connect with my soul, the higher being inside of me that has more awareness. I am able to transcend my own thoughts and feelings and instead feel an intense love and feeling of wholeness, a feeling of being connected to my creator and my ability to create. This is what I call the “zone”. I have heard others refer to it as the “vortex” either way, it is the place you want to get to when meditating. You will know that you are there when you feel an immense calm and joy that cannot be described in words. It is when you are in this zone that you often receive inspiration, impulses, revelation, or great ideas. You will feel a power that you did not know existed, the ability to control your thoughts and think nothing at all. I love it, and hope that you will too.
Some Common Occurrences with Meditation
Don’t be worried or concerned if meditation seems hard for you. Initially, it is hard for everyone. Our minds are always going whether we are aware of it or not. By learning about Mindfulness, Deep Breathing, and Meditation, you will learn how to quiet your mind and put yourself back in control. Most of the chatter in our minds is subconscious and we have little control over until we learn how to master it. At first, it might seem impossible to even get a minute of our minds being quiet. That is okay and totally normal. When you learn to stick with it and just keep trying, you will see that your mind becomes easier and easier to work with and you will become a master of meditation and quieting your thoughts in no time. I am still learning and we are always a work in progress, so long as we are trying and doing our best every day.
Once you get to the state of feeling relaxed and “in the zone” it can be annoying to find that you can be easily distracted and your thoughts keep trying to interrupt the stillness. You might find that you can go in and out of this awareness and consciousness. It can be frustrating to have little thoughts jump in and interrupt your mind, but just kick them out. You can simply say, “Stop.” Or “Not right now.” Or “Thank you for that thought.” Then redirect your mind back to your breathing and/or fan or white noise. Don’t get mad at yourself or feel like a failure- every effort you make is worth it and there really is no “bad” meditation.
Another thing to keep in mind is that just because you are really good at it one day doesn’t mean that will always be the case. I have days when meditation is easy and days when it seems impossible, and I haven’t been able to pinpoint why. There are days when it is easier to quiet my mind, while there are days that I spend the entire half hour fighting unnecessary and lame thoughts away. The point is to keep trying and to know that is it helping to rewire you brain and you will get stronger and better at it with each attempt.
If you really want to get good at meditating and take it to a higher level, I highly recommend Dr. Joe Dispenza’s books, “Breaking the Habit of Being Yourself,” “You Are the Placebo,” with the accompanying guided meditations. They are intense yet amazing- showing how meditation has many benefits, including curing some of the most common diseases (like cancer, MS, Parkinsons Disease, etc.)
I hope you find this guide to meditation useful and that you start trying it today! I promise you will not regret it. Let me know what you think and please share any tips and tricks that help you get to the “zone” better, in the comment section below!