I shared these tips a while back in one of my e-mails I sent out, but as I am growing ~ I am discovering new paths I want to take with Be Confidently You. So you will start to see changes with the way we do things around here, but the goal will always be the same: to provide you with the necessary tools to begin living CONFIDENTLY you.
One of these tools in particular that I have found extremely beneficial is meditation. I found myself always lost in thought, never truly present. On car rides, when people were talking, making dinner, on hikes, while reading books, etc. I realized how much I was missing out of life because I was always creating false stories in my head.
With this lack of presence also came brain fog. Because I could never remember what had happened, I found myself losing my train of thought and couldn’t recall certain events or conversations. I honestly began to feel… Dumb. I know that’s a harsh word to call yourself, but that’s just how I felt. I couldn’t remember things that had just happened or even recall the page I had just read in a book. I found it difficult to concentrate for even just short periods of time.
Why am I like this? I would ask myself.
No matter how hard I tried to be present, I just couldn’t.
So, I turned to meditation.
It was quite difficult at first to begin because of my lack of focus, but once I began to study the practice more the easier it became. I can’t necessarily say that I have cured my distraction or brain fog, but since beginning meditation I have seen major improvements not only in these areas of my life – but also in my mood swings, my stress, my anxieties, and my ability to focus. Even my husband can tell when I haven’t meditated that day!
If this sounds like you, but you don’t know where to start ~ don’t worry, I’ve got you covered! Below I’ve compiled a list of my top 5 meditation tips for beginners.
1. Start Small
Mediation doesn’t have to be practiced for hours on end like you may believe. Yet, should be practiced for as much time as feels necessary on any particular day. Like anything, the skill of meditation takes time to master. By starting with just one minute, you will begin to learn how your unique mind works and take the journey from there. Overtime you will not only WANT, but feel a NEED to sit for longer. Once you discover the high, you’ll never want to come down.
2. DON’T clear your mind
From my own experience & from speaking with others, I’ve learned that most people are told that they need to ‘clear their mind’ when sitting in meditation. But for the majority of the population (with the exception of the Enlightened), it’s an impossible feat. If we cleared the mind, we’d be dead. So, naturally, beginners who try to do this ~ fail. Which leaves them feeling agitated, hopeless, and ready to give up because they’re just not ‘cut out’ for meditation. The real trick here is ~ to be in complete AWARENESS. It’s natural for the mind to wander, to create stories. So if we focus on being present enough to notice when this happens, then we can simply let the thoughts pass and return to the breath. Remembering that it is NORMAL to have these thoughts during meditation, but that you have the POWER to take back control.
3. Count your breaths
As I just said, the mind wanders. So turning your focus to something that is occurring naturally is the easiest way to concentrate. Count the breath 1-10. 1. Inhale 2. Exhale and so on. Once you hit 10, return to the beginning and start again. Appreciate the feeling of filling your abdomen with oxygen and enjoy the calming release.
4. Sit comfortably
As you likely have noticed, most humans practice meditation in Sukhasana, or cross legged position. But if this position is too uncomfortable for you – there are many other options. You can sit on a meditation pillow, on a chair, lying down, or even up against a wall. Wherever you feel right ~ is exactly that, RIGHT.
5. Keep it consistent
The more you skip your meditation, the harder it will be to start again. Just like a muscle, the mind needs to be trained. And in order to improve your strength, you must train consistently. If you only have 1 minute to sit after you’ve been used to practicing for 10 – still take that minute! 10% will always be greater than 0%. To truly experience the real benefits of meditation, you will need to practice on a regular basis. Soon it will feel like second nature. And you’ll even start to feel ‘off’ when you skip practice.
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