How To Meditate For Beginners. Meditation Tips for Deep Relaxation.
You Can Meditate
Most people can meditate. You don't need to be special or spend years practicing. People that have trouble meditating are usually doing something wrong. I tried meditating a bunch of times and I could not get it to work. Then I learned how to do it properly. After that I was able to meditate on the first try.
Meditation is deep relaxation. It feels similar to how you feel when you are falling asleep. If you fall asleep you are no longer meditating. Some people devote a lot of time to meditation. You only need around 15 minutes and day. Within days you can start to experience some of the benefits of meditation.
Don't Think About Nothing
You may think you are supposed to clear your mind and think about nothing. Instead think about something specific for a predetermined amount of time to reduce the number of different thoughts and to keep the stressful thoughts out. You control what you are thinking about. If an unwanted thought creeps in don't give it a second thought. Go back to thinking about whatever it was you were thinking about before. Focus on what you want.
Use deep slow belly breathing. Imagine that your belly is filling up with air when you inhale and emptied when you exhale. This is a very important part of meditation. Practice belly breathing before you attempt to meditate. You slowly inhale deeply and let most of the air out when you exhale. Don't hold your breath. To make meditating easier switch to using deep slow belly breathing most of the time. You can use it throughout the day when you are not exercising. I breath that way most of the time now when I am not doing cardio.
When a person is hypnotized they are choosing to follow instructions. The person being hypnotized is in control. The hypnotist is only a guide. Meditation is a lot like hypnosis. You listen to a set of instructions and follow them. Listening to the words is not enough. You need to take action. Focus on the words and do the actions.
The word 'relax' is frequently used during meditation. It means to become less tense or stressed. When you hear it you need to take action. Since you know what the word means telling yourself to relax and allowing it is usually enough. If I say "Relax my scalp." a few times then my scalp becomes more relaxed. Just allow it to happen. Like most things you can get better at relaxing yourself with practice. Practice using self talk with the word 'relax' to relax different body parts. If you don't over think it then it is fairly easy.
If You Can't Visualize Describe
You think in words and images. When you visualize you are using images of things that are not there. It can be from your imagination, from your memory or a combination of both. Visualization is part of meditation. If you have trouble picturing things in your mind then describe it in words. Writers describe scenes with words all the time. Don't limit yourself to sight. Include as many senses as possible.
One way to improve your ability to visualize is to practice visualizing the scenery around you. Close your eyes and try to picture your surroundings. If you go to relaxing places and practice visualizing them it is much easier to visualize a relaxing place when you are attempting to meditate. Spend time outside and experience the relaxing healing power of nature.
Make It a Journey
Meditation should be like walking down a shoreline and taking pictures. You focus your attention on one specific thing. Then you move on and don't look back. Spending too much time thinking about the same thing leads to a lack of progress and boredom. Keep moving forward.
Create Good Feng Shui
You can create good Feng Shui by getting rid of clutter, having your back to the wall, facing doors and windows, etc. It improves your luck and reduces stress. It also makes it much easier to meditate. Meditate in a clean room so you are not thinking about the mess. Reduce the chance that someone might sneak up on you or watch you. Have your back to the wall and face the door even if you don't expect someone to open it. If other people are around put a do not disturb sign up and tell people not to bother you. If you meditate outside don't do it out in the open unless you are already good at it.
Practice doing slow moving relaxing exercises and exercises where you hold a pose. Workout your whole body. You become more aware of your different muscles and you practice focusing on different body parts. While you are working out practice being aware of your body and your thoughts. Exercises where you need to concentrate work the best. You should be focusing on the moment.
Body weight exercises like yoga that have you making a conscious effort to maintain good form work well. Doing body weight exercises regularly can improve your ability to relax yourself.
You can meditate.
Make it a journey.
Don't think about nothing.
Create good feng shui.
If you can't visualize describe.
How I Meditate
I go to a quiet place where I will not be disturbed. After closing the door and shutting the blinds I sit down in a comfortable chair but I don't rest my back against it. Then I close my eyes and focus on my breathing for about a minute. Next I relax my body using self talk. I think "Relax my scalp.", "Relax my forehead." and so on until I finish with my feet. Each suggestion is repeated 3 times before moving on to the next.
To relax my mind I think about one of my relaxing beach experiences. I visualize the beach and imagine I am there enjoying the sights, the sounds, the warmth of the sun and the breeze. If I feel like it I move down the beach or switch to another relaxing experience. After a few minutes I move on to the next phase. I visualize myself going down an elevator or set of stairs while counting down and occasionally telling myself that "I am becoming more and more relaxed.".
When I am finish counting down I enjoy the feeling of deep relaxing. I focus on how I feel. To bring myself out of it I count up and tell myself "I am becoming more and more alert." 3 times. When I am done counting I say "When I open my eyes I am going to feel wide awake and refreshed.". Then I open my eyes. Usually I count down from 10 but only count back up to 5.
© 2013 Michael H