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Meditation can help with so many aspects of your life. I was a doubter for the longest time and never thought meditation would be of any benefit to me.
It wasn’t until one day that I had had enough with my anxiety, sleepless nights and constant racing, worried thoughts, that I finally bit the bullet and tried it out. Read more about how I use mediation to help me reduce stress and anxiety.
Up until then, I had tried everything under the sun to cope with anxiety, stress and help me get some sleep. And nothing seemed to help much.
Meditation changed all of that for me. Now, I rarely feel anxious and I’m able to put my thoughts and worries behind me so that I can relax and actually sleep at night.
But, learning how to meditate wasn’t the easiest process. You won’t be good at it right away. And that’s okay. There’s a learning curve to meditating, but you will get there!
With these tips you’ll be able to get through those initial weird stages as you’re learning how to meditate and you’ll be on your way to relieving stress, anxiety, improving your mental health and sleep!
ACCEPT THE LEARNING CURVE
Mediation is a skill that none of us have when we first start out. Keeping that in mind will save you a lot of frustration as you’re getting used to meditating.
The first few times you meditate will be hard. Your mind won’t turn off, you will have racing thoughts about everything going on in your life, and then you will keep thinking about why you can’t stop thinking. I’m here to tell you that’s part of the process!
You might even feel like a failure. I know I did when I first began meditating.
Each time you meditate, you will get better, I promise. Don’t get frustrated and give up. Keep going and it will become second nature to you and you’ll be able to quiet your mind whenever you need a little peace.
To be successful with meditation you need to keep in mind that meditation is not trying to control thoughts or prevent them form happening.
Don’t try to control your thoughts or stop them from happening in the first place. That will never work.
Meditation is simply acknowledging when I thought crosses your mind, and then not engaging with it.
So, say you’re meditating and you start to think about a bill that’s due or the presentation you have to give tomorrow at work. Instead of taking that thought and engaging with it (and then start thinking and worrying even more) just simply acknowledge you had the thought and tuck it away.
I like to imaging I’m putting the thought into a box and sending it off. But you can come up with your own way of making this work best for you.
FIND THE RIGHT SPACE
Meditating will be infinitely easier in the beginning if you have a nice, quiet space to do it in. Ideally, you want a space that’s free of any noise and distraction.
I know that’s not always possible to do. But, try your best to find somewhere quiet. You could even go out and sit in your car if your house is too noisy.
Once you get better at meditation, you will be able to meditate anywhere, so this won’t be an issue forever.
I meditate in my room with only a little light from a lamp. No tv, phone, radio or anything that could distract you.
You don’t need to sit crossed legged on a pillow in the floor or wear anything special. All you need is to be comfortable. Wear comfy clothes and find somewhere to sit or lay where you will be able to relax.
I also like diffusing a relaxing essential oil, like lavender as I meditate. Read more about how to use essential oils and my favorite relaxing blends.
MAKE IT A HABIT
You need to regularly meditate to get the most benefit from it. How often you meditate will just depend on each person.
I prefer meditating every day right before bed to help with anxiety and sleep. But, some people don’t need to meditate as often, and that is totally okay too!
However often you do it, you need to stick to that schedule. I do recommend doing it as often as possible in the beginning, that way you can get more practice in and become better at it.
USE AN APP
Meditation is hard enough as a beginner! Don’t try to just jump in and meditate by yourself. Although, if you can, that’s amazing!
I highly recommend using an app to help you get started. There are hundreds of apps out there that offer free guided mediation on many different topics.
Meditations for grief, stress, anxiety, social phobias, whatever you may be going through or struggling with.
Many people get started with an app and then graduate to doing meditations by themselves. But, if you’re like me, and prefer having something to listen to and help guide you, that’s perfectly okay!
I got started with the Headspace app and still use it today. They have a great (free) 7-day course on getting started with meditation that will teach you everything you need to know and offers great tips on getting started.
I will be working on a post of the best meditation apps, so look out for that soon!
FOCUS ON YOUR BREATH
Focusing on your breathing is one of the best tips that helps me be successful when meditating. Focusing on this allows you to relax your mind so there’s no racing thoughts or worries. There’s no panic or stresses. Just your breath.
It sounds very simple, but solely focusing on your breath takes a lot of practice and control. If you stay focused on your breath it will be easier for you to drown out the noise around you and keep your mind from racing.
Hopefully with these tips you’ll be able to master mediation in no time! Just remember, you aren’t going to be perfect at first (or really ever) so don’t sweat it and keep it up!