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Meditation Made Easy

Let me start by saying I am no meditation expert, nor do I have a certificate in teaching

meditation. I came across meditation as part of Yoga classes- the part of the class at the end where you lie down in a darkened room and are guided through a relaxation practice (adult nap time- everyone's favourite part of a Yoga class)

But from experiencing this and teaching this as part of my own Yoga classes, I started to practice mindfulness meditation as well. There are many misconceptions about meditation- such as you have to sit in lotus pose wearing robes and you have to not think about anything.

But none of that is true- you can start with the simplest form of a meditation practice. Mindfulness meditation involves sitting silently, breathing deeply and paying attention to thoughts, feelings or the sensation of breathing.

In its most basic definition, its sitting still and breathing to calm us down and control emotion. When you think about how powerful breath is at controlling how we feel, if you can learn to

control that we can change our mood and feelings more easily.

What happens when we get angry? We breathe heavier.

What happens when we’re annoyed? We sigh (deep breathe out)

What happens when we’re anxious? We breathe faster.

What happens when we’re relaxed? We breathe easier/ slower

Without us realising our body automatically uses the breath to try to control these feelings- ever been told to take a deep breath to calm yourself? That's essentially what meditation is, but we’re intentionally practicing it to prepare us for when we’re in uncomfortable situations of life.

The mindfulness part is the fancy way of saying we are choosing to do it- ever been for a walk in the mountains or the woods, been for a bike ride or finished a workout and noticed how refreshed you can feel with a clear mind? Its that deliberate feeling of distracting our self from any other thoughts because you’re only focusing on the present moment that we aim for when meditating.

If you can achieve this during your meditation practice when you finish you will feel more relaxed, refreshed and that the conversation in your head has calmed.

One of the biggest misconceptions is that we’re trying to empty our mind of any thoughts- but if you can do that straight away you’re likely either completely enlightened, or dead. Thoughts and internal dialogue always run through our minds and they can be one of the hardest things to let go of, meditation is about learning to acknowledge these thoughts, refocus on the breathe and learning to control our emotions to return to a calm, relaxed state.

How do you do it?

  1. Sit comfortably- sit on a cushion, sit forward on your sofa, sit on the bottom of your bed. Can’t sit with your legs crossed? Don’t do it, sit however is comfortable in a position you can sit still in for up to 10 minutes, or even lie down but avoid falling asleep.

  2. Close your eyes- or don't, just soften your gaze so you’re not directly focusing on anything.

  3. Breathe- the breath is the important part, this is where we can focus our attention. Breathe in and out through your nose, start by breathing regularly but then when you start to notice yourself relaxing that's when you can start to deepen the breathe.

  4. Observe- focus on the sensation of breathing (the chest and shoulders rising as we inhale, and melting as we exhale) or how the body feels (any arrears of tension- tight hips, tight shoulders) we’re not trying to clear the mind, thoughts and internal dialogue will always run through our busy minds, its okay if this happens, let it go, return to breathe and start again.

  5. Practice- No one is good at anything the first time they try it, meditation is a mindfulness exercise, and like anything we practice, the more we do it, the better we get at it. Don’t give up after the first couple of tries if you feel it didnt work. Try it a few times per week and the more you do it, the easier it becomes.

  If you are interested in starting meditating, try our Yoga class. Or if you have any questions or want to know more, feel free to send me a message.     

Stay healthy, stay happy.


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