Is meditation something that you could enjoy and benefit from? While some people love the freedom to just let everything go, others - especially when they have over active minds - find it hard to clear out their heads sufficiently to meditate. It is those same busy minds that can lead to insomnia in the wee small hours of the morning and too much tossing and turning while you try to resolve all the problems of the world.
If you can overcome the hurdles, there are many benefits from meditation
Apart from teaching you the art of relaxing, meditation helps strengthen the brain and goes on to improve focus, concentration and even productivity.
While we might all know that meditation is widely recommended as a healthy way to manage stress, it also relieves physical complaints like headaches
while boosting the immune system so that we are less likely to become ill.
Stress can be particularly damaging to our bodies and so can medication but meditation does the complete opposite as it restores the body to a calm state, helps the body to repair itself and prevents new damage occurring from the physical effects of stress.
Other health benefits include a reduction in
- Heart disease
- High blood pressure
You will notice that these are typical conditions often brought about by modern lifestyles but that can be helped by centuries old remedies.
Most types of meditation can be done whilst sitting so first you need to find a comfortable and quiet place to sit. Sitting is usually better than lying down as otherwise you might just fall asleep!
You are not bound by just one method of meditation
Here are several to choose from:
The goal of the Zen method is to separate you from the ego and all negative stimulants. You need to sit and focus all your attention on one object. This is achieved by different seating positions and by various breathing techniques as well.
As the name suggests, you have to pay attention to your current state and focus on the present moment. Everything is about now, so that in turn you eliminate the anxiety and stress that is rife in an unfocused mind. This particular method can be easier for those with the over active minds or if you have noisy surroundings because you can still be aware of the sounds and activities happening around you but you let your mind become fluid and flow from one thought to the next, not really focusing on one particular thing.
This type of meditation is suitable for those who regularly participate in prayer as it is based on communicating with God. Just like the other styles, you must become calm and quiet and then begin to focus on a question or problem you might have. This style of meditation can feel not only relaxing, but rewarding as well for those with a strong faith.
Instead of sitting, you will stand and you will utilize actual physical exercises including breathing, basic hand movements and others. A calmer mind is the goal.
Movement Meditation Method
Another method involving movement - but this time you sit with your eyes closed while focusing on your breathing and trying out different gentle, repetitive flowing movements. You may choose a slow left and right swaying motion or you could try moving your entire upper body in a slow circular motion.
As the word mantra suggests, this form of meditation involves reciting a sound, a sentence or a series of words – especially if it has important significance to you – over and over again. A set of beads can be used as an aid so that each time the mantra is repeated, you move on to the next bead. It can be compared to a catholic reciting the rosary. In yoga, the mantra Om
is regularly used since it delivers a deep vibration that makes it easy for the mind to concentrate on.
Meditation is an absolutely free form of healthcare and that must be worth something!
But it does take some practice and I know that some will find it difficult to get started. Take a little time and effort and you will reap the rewards.
Don't be tempted to dismiss meditation as being not for you.
Remember this: meditate, don't medicate.