If you have an active and long-term yoga practice, then you probably also meditate, or are at least have been curious about it. Although yoga and meditation go hand in hand, people seem to gravitate more easily towards yoga than towards mediation.
Why is this?
If the roadblock mainly consists of not knowing where to start, then we have your back! Here are 5 meditation tips for beginners:
Be Aware of the Benefits
It’s more difficult to begin a meditation practice if you aren’t sure why you’re doing it. Like yoga, meditation focuses largely on breath and inwardness. It encourages those who practice to turn their thoughts inward and focus on the present.
Unlike yoga, meditation encourages stillness and cultivates the ability to be both comfortable and uncomfortable at the same time. It can help increase your resilience in dealing with stress and anxiety, and helps people prone to unwanted overthinking, otherwise known as rumination.
Understand the Principles
Although many beginners think that the main goal of mediation is purposeful focus without becoming distracted, it’s learning to notice when your mind drifts that results in successful cognitive therapy:
“You can’t restructure your thoughts if you haven’t first developed the ability to identify your thoughts.”
Start with 3-5 Minutes
Beginners don’t have to begin their mediation practice by doing so for hours. Start small. Try sitting in a comfortable and quiet place in your home, eyes closed, for 3 minutes. A great way to try and control your thoughts is to breathe in and out a mantra.
On your inhale, imagine the word “slow” and on the exhale, imagine the word “down.” For every breath, repeat the mantra. You’ll be surprised how after a few times, that 3 minutes becomes 8! (And so on.)
Anything is Better than Nothing
Remember that 5 minutes is better than 2, and 2 minutes is better than zero. By keeping your meditation practice consistent, even if it means only getting in 2 minutes a day, you’re creating a healthy habit that will evolve into something powerful.
Be realistic, and do what works for you and your lifestyle. Which brings us to…
If All Else Fails, Throw the Rules Out the Window
Rules don’t mean much if they aren’t going to be followed. So don’t follow the same ones as others, if they don’t make sense! For example, if one person’s suggested mantra doesn’t work for you, create one that does! If meditating in the evening isn’t realistic, try doing it in your car on your lunch break.
Meditation is about learning to control your thoughts and having the tools to recognize when your mind is negatively affecting your body and vice versa. It’s about aligning your mind, body, and soul for harmony and inner peace.
So it’s worth a try! If you’re a beginner, ask us for more tips on how to incorporate meditation into your life, today.