How to Meditate – A Beginner’s Guide
By: Krista Tait, Registered Massage Therapist
I have only been meditating for a few years. Learning how to meditate has helped my outlook on life, cured my insomnia, reduced my stress and allowed me to be more mindful.
To some, learning how to meditate seems like a daunting task… Is it really possible to just sit still, quiet your mind and not move? This was my thinking before I started too, but my perspective changed when I decided to take a class. We are human; our thoughts are going to be stirred and our body will want to move during meditation and that is ok!
Below are some tips that I have picked up along the way to help you learn how to meditate and incorporate it into your routine.
First, pay attention to what you are doing! Be mindful. Second, you need to have a willingness to meditate in order to be successful. Last, find something that you like to do and do it as your form of meditation (i.e. listen to sounds or music, perform a scan bringing awareness to different areas of your body, etc.).
Five essentials to remember while learning how to meditate:
- It’s okay to have thoughts. Come back and do so without judgement.
- Be kind to yourself.
- Begin every meditation like it’s the first time.
- Don’t try too hard – just let it happen.
- Stick with it – it will work.
Benefits of meditation:
- Lessens worry and anxiety
- Reduces stress, fear and depression
- Improves resilience against pain and adversity
- Helps prevent emotional eating
- Improves your mood
- Reduces blood pressure
- Increases longevity
- Improves breathing and heart rate
- Improves immune system and energy levels
- Increases mental focus
- Improves cognitive skills
- Helps ignore distractions
- Helps manage ADD & ADHD
There are several websites and apps which can be helpful while getting started:
Feel free to try a few of these out and see which one resonates with you. Start out slow and remember be kind to yourself when learning how to meditate!