You know the term yo-yo dieter? Well I am a yo-yo meditator. I know all the benefits, I have seen them with my very eyes (or felt them in my very heart I should say), but sometimes I fall off the wagon...hard. I am not saying I get a big zero when it comes to mindfulness practices. I am currently dedicated to my daily affirmations and spiritual reading, but lately the mediation piece is missing and I am making a concrete plan to get back on track with daily meditation. That is why I am sharing my top 6 tips to getting started with you, I love the accountability of putting it out there.
We all have a never ending list of things to do, but the reality is that nothing on this list is as important as your state of mind. Mindfulness is everything. It is the “thing” that will get you through obstacles, it is responsible for your happiness and affects how you experience your life.
Without meditation I can feel myself getting over stimulated, too much technology, no beginning or end to the work day, my phone by my side, my brain is constantly adding more tings to my to-do list. I know it is important to stop and take in the present moment instead of constantly jumping from one thing to another and not let the distractions and expectations create chaos and leech whatever pockets of time I have left.
Don’t get me wrong, I am a fan of distractions, I am a social media junkie, reality TV and I appreciate and thrive on a busy schedule (I like structure). At the same time I don't want to neglect the present moment in preparing for the future. Time flies by and gets lost, moments are gone and the soul drifts deeper and deeper into the background. Meditation is an important part of how I stay connected. Finding 10-15 minutes a day to be present is a good place to start. This does not mean the world has to shut down, it’s not that big of a deal. Your goal is to tune into the present moment, tune into yourself.
Here are my Top 6 tips to get you started:
1-Use Headphones: I often wear headphones when I meditate. I either listen to meditation music or a guided mediation. They also help block out distractions.
2-Set a stopwatch or alarm: I often set a 10-20 minute alarm or timer on my phone when I meditate, that way I am not preoccupied thinking: “how long have I been doing this?”
3-Wear warm clothes: I love wearing warm socks and a hooded sweatshirt. If you are in a cold climate like me or just tend to have cold hands and feet, I suggest wearing some cozy socks and a warm sweater. I feel much more relaxed when my body temperature is warm.
4-Use a meditation App. This is a MAJOR staple for my meditations. I have the Omvana App on my smartphone, the App is free and so are several of the guided meditations and music tracks included with the App. This is an amazing place to start, if you have a busy mind like me plugging into one of these tracks is extremely helpful.
5- Light a candle. Setting the mood, giving you a focal point or establishing a ritual, lighting a candle is a beautiful way to respect and honour your meditation practice.
6- Remember…You Can’t Do It Wrong! Yay! What a relief Mediation is a personal practice and journey, you can’t fail. Set your intensions and then ride the wave and respect your journey. Your practice can range from “I am going to focus on my breathing for 10 minutes” to “I am not going to check my email for 10 minutes” Everyone has their own needs and start off points.
I hope these tips resignate with you in some why. I think we can all benefit from a mindful release and reset and meditation is one the best way to do it. Give meditation a shot and remember...don’t judge yourself xo Anna