Meditation is one of the oldest and most affordable forms of self-care, and the simplest to implement for a happier, healthier, more productive life.
There’s a good reason that meditation has risen in popularity over the last few years. Studies show that there are mental, physical, and emotional benefits to meditation including increased focus, decreased stress and anxiety levels, improved sleep quality, better connections in relationships, increased creativity, reduction of physical and psychological pain — and that’s just to name a few. The best part? It takes just a few minutes a day.
Let the moon be your guide.
There are many forms of meditation and some people have the best success with guided meditation.
Channeling the energy of the moon through each of its phases is a simple and effective way to guide your meditation practice. While meditation is about becoming centered on yourself and letting go of the influences of the outside world, having a focus and intention during these moments of quiet reflection can give the beginner a sense of purpose in practice.
The infographic below a useful tool that explains the energy or “theme” of each lunar phase. Reflect on the themes and goals, and set your intention at each phase before you settle into meditation.
When we find an idea or notion that excites us, many of us do too much or over-complicate the learning process which can lead to burnout. The idea behind meditation is to calm the senses and the mind so being overzealous is counterintuitive!
In your first weeks, carve out a solid five minutes a day in a quiet space to build a good foundation for a healthy, sustainable habit.
The best position is one that is comfortable for you. Meditation experts suggest finding a position that allows you to open your chest with a straight back but whether it’s cross-legged, kneeling, laying on your back--there’s no wrong way to position yourself.
In your quiet place, open up your chest by setting your shoulders back and straightening your spine. Connect with your breath. Close your eyes and tune into the rise and fall of your own breathing with calmness and no judgement.
Meditation is the inverse of actively “thinking.” In the moments of stillness, allow your thoughts to come and go. When you feel centered and calm, end your daily practice by finding your way back to your breath.
Meditation is a mindful exercise that requires effort on your part to make the time for a moment of peace, but you’ll find it well worth the effort in reaping the proven benefits and the ripple effect it has on every aspect of your life.