Create a comfortable space
Before you begin to meditate it is important to create a comfortable space for yourself. Whilst you can meditate anywhere it can help to create a space which you find calm and relaxing. This could be in your bedroom on your bed, on the sofa in the living room, sitting on the floor with some cushions or even in your garden. You can meditate in any position, find what is most comfortable for you. That may be sitting in a supported chair, laying down or sitting crossed legged on the floor. You may want to even light your favourite candle or play some soothing music in the background to really relax yourself.
Tips to begin meditating
- Don’t worry about how long you meditate for. Meditation isn’t a goal, it’s a practice. In the first instance you may only meditate for a couple of minutes and that is absolutely fine.
- Try to practice at a time when you won’t be interrupted. It can also be helpful to do it at the same time every day, you could include it as part of your daily routine.
- Begin by either closing your eyes or softening your gaze, whichever feels more natural and comfortable.
- Be kind and patient with yourself, always. As soon as you sit quietly you will notice how busy your mind is and how many different thoughts you have. You may have thoughts like “I can’t do this” or “meditation isn’t for me” or “What’s the point”. Meditation is for everyone and like learning anything new it’s just takes a bit of practice.
- As you sit just be aware of how you’re feeling today, how is your mood? How does your body feel? You do not need to try and change how your feeling in any way, just have an awareness of this.
- Next bring your awareness to your breath. Notice how it feels to breathe today. Notice how your body moves as you breathe. As you inhale you can repeat in your mind “I am breathing in” and as you exhale “I am breathing out”.
- It is almost inevitable that your mind will wander throughout so each time you notice that your mind has wandered just gently guide your focus back to your breathing again. It doesn’t matter how many times your mind wanders, just be patient with yourself and keeping bringing yourself back to your breath. Don’t worry about clearing your mind, this is not the point of meditation even though it can be a lovely result of your practice.Practice this for as long as you wish.
- When you decide to finish your meditation session give yourself a smile and take a moment before you open your eyes.
- With regular practice you will find you get more and more benefits from having your own practice.
A few more helpful tips
- Some people find it helpful to listen to a guided meditation. You can find these easily on both Youtube and Spotify.
- Enjoy meditation with friends or family. You don’t have to meditate at the same time, but having someone who’s also looking to meditating regularly can help motivate you.
- Don't compare one meditation session to the next by judging whether it was a good session, bad session or worse than the last session. Just note at the end how each session made you feel instead. Maybe you feel a little less tense? Or maybe you feel a little more aware of your feelings?