Meditation is the healthiest thing that you aren’t doing for your mind and body…yet! Did you know that meditation can ease stress by lowering blood pressure and breathing rate? Practicing meditation can also strengthen your immune system and help you recover from fatigue! Being able to step back from our emotions and quietly observe our thoughts and feelings is something we all must learn how to do in life, and meditation is one of the lesser known ways to do so.
So, how do you find time to meditate in your current schedule?
The best times to meditate are right when you wake up and right before you go to sleep.
Try waking up 30 minutes earlier to meditate. This will make your day so much better. You will begin the day with a clear and focused mind, not a groggy, full of strategy and purpose. Meditating before bed allows for a deeper sleep, where you awake feeling more rested which has numerous health and personal benefits.
Sit with your legs criss-cross apple sauce and your hands resting on your knees palms up. Sit with your spine straight, like you are pushing your head to the ceiling. Begin breathing in through your nose for 3 seconds, then hold your breath for 3 seconds, then breathe out through your mouth for 3 seconds. Repeat this cycle, even extending the holds for up to 5 seconds.
So what is the best way to get started meditating?
Meditation can be one of those things that you may not like at first, simply because it makes you a bit uncomfortable for our high-speed, constantly logged on society. From chanting meditations, to dancing meditations, there are many different forms that we can practice, but how do we start? Signing up for a meditation class is a pretty direct way of jumping in. Try asking a friend to go with you for some extra motivation and to help spread this positive exercise. Another great way to get started meditating is to start small and build each day. Try sitting for 5 minutes on day 1, 10 minutes on Day 2, increasing by 5 minutes will bring you to an half hour meditation in about a week, which is a great place to be. You can also try other less intense forms of meditation such as taking a dance class, cleaning your house, or going for a long walk. All of these practices allow the mind to settle and relax and focus on a mundane task.
Meditation is one of the healthiest activities that we can engage our minds and bodies. It takes us into a new space where we must learn to observe our thoughts and sit quietly. Relaxing both our minds and bodies is essential when we need rest.
Being a better, healthier and more clear-minded you is as simple as sitting in silence a few times a week!
Max is a consultant for Point Above, a mindfulness, leadership and business coach based out of New Orleans, Louisiana.