Quiet your mind with med­i­ta­tion

Life’s hec­tic. Med­i­ta­tion will help you slow down, and give your mind a much-needed rest

Northern Rivers Style - - CONTENTS -

Ac­cord­ing to the de­vel­op­ers of guided med­i­ta­tion app, Headspace, “med­i­ta­tion isn’t about be­com­ing a dif­fer­ent per­son, a new per­son or even a bet­ter per­son. It’s about train­ing in aware­ness and get­ting a healthy per­spec­tive. You’re not try­ing to turn off your thoughts or feel­ings. You’re learn­ing to ob­serve with­out judge­ment.”

Med­i­ta­tion can be dif­fi­cult, par­tic­u­larly if you haven’t done it be­fore, so when you’re just start­ing out it can be help­ful to try guided med­i­ta­tions. These are read­ily eas­ily ac­ces­si­ble on apps in­clud­ing Headspace, The Mind­ful­ness App, Calm, Mind­body and Stop, Breathe and Think.

Re­mem­ber that the mind can be an odd and con­fus­ing place some­times, so you’re do­ing a great job just hav­ing a go.

Ready to try? Here are five easy steps to get you on the path to med­i­ta­tion.

1. Find your space

Try and find a spot that is pri­vate and you feel to­tally com­fort­able. Re­move any clut­ter. A bed­room is a good sug­ges­tion.

2. Sit com­fort­ably

There are a lot of dif­fer­ent ways to sit when you med­i­tate, but two of the most com­mon ways in­clude sit­ting cross-legged on the floor and sit­ting on a chair. It is not rec­om­mended that you lie down, as this is likely to in­duce sleep, and the point of med­i­tat­ing is to oc­cupy a state of aware­ness.

3. Clear your mind

Loosen your body, stretch, and take a few deep breaths. Close your eyes.

4. Sit and ob­serve

No­tice the thoughts that come into your mind. Don’t en­gage with them, just ob­serve them. You’ll find that when you’re med­i­tat­ing, things will prob­a­bly come into your mind such as, “I need to go to the shops to­mor­row”, or “I need to re­ply to that email” — tasks to keep you oc­cu­pied. How­ever, you are a pas­sive observer in med­i­ta­tion and it is your job to not en­gage with your thoughts, and to sim­ply ob­serve them. If you be­come dis­tracted by these thoughts, imag­ine pop­ping them like a bal­loon.

5. Fin­ish your med­i­ta­tion

Slowly open your eyes again and be­come aware with your phys­i­cal sur­round­ings again. If you’d like to, sit qui­etly in your med­i­ta­tive space and get up when you feel ready to re­sume phys­i­cal ac­tiv­i­ties again.

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