Meditation is not for me. At least, that is what I would have told you ten years ago. For years, I tried to force myself to meditate. Then I read that if I meditate, I could reduce my stress naturally, increase inner calmness, give me clarity of thought, increase my creativity and promote inner happiness. Well, I wanted all of that, so I took several classes, watched videos, and realized I was making it too hard on myself; meditation is not that difficult to do.

Here is what I learned

There are many types of mediation. Different types of meditation give you different benefits. The good news is there is a type of meditation for everyone. Whichever one feels more natural to you is the one you should try. Whenever I get stressed out or have a gazillion thoughts and don’t know where to turn, this is the best time to meditate.

Step #1 Choose a form of mediation

Here are the most popular types of meditation that anyone can do:

For example, loving-kindness meditation – is used to strengthen feelings of compassion, kindness, and acceptance toward oneself and others. It typically involves opening the mind to receive love from others and then sending well wishes to loved ones, friends, acquaintances, animals, too; it can be of people and animals past and present.

Focused meditation –  involves concentration on an object or sound. Listening to sound, including guided meditation, a waterfall, music, the wind, a gong, sitting in the sun, smelling flowers, touching the water.

Movement meditation – examples would be walking in nature, tai chi, qi gong, and gentle movement, suitable for developing body awareness and inner peace.

Progressive relaxation –  This form of meditation aims to reduce tension in the body and promote peace. Often, this form of meditation involves slowly tightening and relaxing one muscle group at a time throughout the body.

Spiritual mediation – Praying, singing, reading the Bible, or any religious book. This practice is beneficial for those who seek spiritual growth and a deeper connection to a higher power or spiritual force.

Visualization meditation focuses on enhancing feelings of relaxation, peace, and calm by visualizing festive scenes, images, or figures. This practice involves imagining a scene vividly and using all five senses to add as much detail as possible. Another form of visualization meditation involves imagining yourself succeeding at specific goals intended to increase focus and motivation.

Mantra meditation – Mantra can be spoken loudly or quietly. After chanting the mantra for some time, you’ll be more alert and in tune with your environment. It allows you to experience more profound levels of awareness. Some people enjoy mantra meditation because they find it easier to focus on a word than on their breath. This type of meditation uses a repetitive sound to clear the mind. It can be a word, phrase, or sound, one of the most common mantras is “om.”

Mindfulness meditation – isn’t about letting your thoughts wander. But it isn’t about trying to empty your mind, either. Instead, the practice involves paying close attention to the present moment — especially our thoughts, emotions, and sensations — whatever it is happening.

Step #2 How to meditate

To get these benefits, you may worry you have to dedicate hours each week and aim to clear your mind completely. But experts say that’s not exactly true. So instead, start with 5 minutes of mediation, and you can work your way up from there.

Step #3 When to meditate

 

It is no secret that meditation is good for you. Studies have proven that having a regular meditation practice can do everything from alleviating your anxiety to lowering your blood pressure, improving cognitive function, and even slowing down the process of aging.

I meditate so that my mind cannot complicate my life” – Sri Chinmoy