I’ve heard from many clients that meditation just isn’t for them. Imagining sitting still for long periods or chanting “weird” sounds does not resonate with them at all. But meditation doesn’t have to be complicated and rigid. It’s flexible. There is no right or wrong way. Have a chat with five people who meditate, and I bet you’ll hear about five completely different practices.
Many of my clients quickly realize that meditation is a valuable part of solving their problems. It really is for everyday people. It is not complicated, and it does offer surprising health and life-enhancing benefits. Meditation can increase mental clarity and focus, boost your immune system, reduces stress and anxiety and improve your overall mood.
If you’re saying to yourself, “I don’t have time; my life is just too busy,” start with just ten minutes three times a week. If your worry is your inability to block out the noises and distractions around you, grab some headphones and a soothing track created for meditation. Don’t overcomplicate meditation. Make it simple and embrace the practice, no matter the length.
You don’t have to sit rigidly; you can even lie down. Just get comfortable and dive in with one of these meditation techniques:
If you’re unsure about starting a practice, I recommend that you begin with guided meditation. There are hundreds of apps, CDs and DVDs available for beginners, as well as free online resources. The gentle instructions soothe many of my clients and help them build confidence with their practices.
For those who have trouble clearing their mind, I suggest using mantras. You can choose from ancient Sanskrit mantras or focus on a phrase that has meaning for you. Perhaps you’re working on building your self-confidence. You could recite an affirmation that supports your work, such as “I am a well-loved and well-respected person.”
Visualization is a powerful meditation option. You can visualize a calm, idyllic setting — the shore or a mountain spring — to bring you peace. You could also choose to visualize the end result of a goal you are working toward. What does success look like? How does it feel? This type of visualization can be not only calming, but exciting and mood boosting as well.
If you find peace in movement, outdoor walking meditation is a great option. During walking meditation, move at a slow to medium pace and focus on your feet. Notice when each part of your foot contacts the ground. Feel the roll of your foot. When your attention wanders, bring it back to your feet. This ancient practice resonates with many of today’s highly-stressed, constantly moving people.
If you’d like more information on incorporating meditation into your life, contact me, Karen David. I would love to talk with you about the many benefits these practices provide.
A nurse for more than 25 years, Karen David is a Certified Wellness Coach and Lifestyle and Weight Management Specialist. She brings her passion for well living and calm presence to empower others in health and wellness. Karen is CEO of Live Life Well, LLC.
This article is for informational purposes only. Practices, services or products described are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. Please speak with a doctor before beginning any new health regimen.