Now that we’ve learned about posture lets talk about the meditation process. I am going to describe the process that I use during my meditation. When first starting, I would meditate for 10 mins. I now meditate for 30 mins daily. I usually meditate directly after my shower in the morning, but it’s important that you find a time that works best for you and your schedule. Focus on consistency. The more consistent you are, the more benefits you will reap.
It’s important to meditate for the full amount of time that you choose, so use a timer in the beginning. You will become more and more in tune with the time passing as you practice. A timer becomes less and less important as you progress.
NOTE: There are many different forms of meditation, but this is the most effective for me (at the moment of writing this). If this doesn’t work for you, you may want to choose another process. You can find this by doing a simple google search. As an absolute beginner, a guided meditation session may be best. Try Headspace or Calm. They are both great!
1. Get settled – begin to breath deeply
Pick your favorite posture and get settled. Start by taking deep breaths in through the nose and out through the mouth. Your breathing should be loud enough that it would be heard by someone sitting near you. Eyes are open at this point. Calmly count the breaths in your head: 1 in – 2 out – 3 in – 4 out – 5 in – 6 out. On 6, gently close your eyes.
2. Check in with your surroundings
Focus on your surroundings. Check-in with your senses. What do you smell, taste, or hear? What do you feel? Are you warm or cold? Is there a breeze hitting your body? Make note of these feelings.
3. Check in with your body
Scan your body from head to toe. Make note of your physical self. Feel the weight of your body at rest. Observe the points where the body is in contact with the chair or ground. Note any discomfort. If you feel stressful areas, try and relax them.
Now check in with your mind. What is your underlying mood. Observe your thoughts. Let your thoughts arise without altering them. Just make note of them and let them pass, like clouds passing in the sky. Clear your mind of all judgements.
Consider why you are meditating. Spend some time with that thought.
4. Focus on your breath
Allow yourself to breath naturally, in and out through the nose. Calmly counting in your head; odds in, evens out. Start the count over once you get to 10.
1 in – 2 out – 3 in – 4 out – 5 in – 6 out – 7 in – 8 out – 9 in – 10 out – 1 in – 2 out and so on…
Take note of the body’s natural cadence. Are the breaths deep or shallow? Focus on your breathing. Allowing thoughts to pass as they arise. When you feel your mind wander, acknowledge, and bring focus back to your breath. Become 100% in the present.
This is also a good time to introduce a mantra into your meditation routine, but we’ll get into that in a later post.
5. Allow your mind to wander
As you near the end of your meditation session, allow your mind to wander. Note the thoughts that enter your mind. Do not alter them, just let them pass as you have before. What are you thinking about? What are your senses telling you? What are the physical feelings in your body? Are you feeling more relaxed?
When ready, slowly open your eyes. Take a moment to acknowledge how you feel. Do not allow yourself to jump into your next daily task. Be present. Take this moment for yourself. Try and parlay this good feeling into your next actions.