So you came here wondering about Meditation and how to do it?
Well good news you’re just in a right place. To be fair, it doesn’t has a one exact meaning. Meditation can be a state in which you use a technique – such as mindfulness, or focusing the mind on a particular object, thought, or activity – to train attention and awareness, and achieve a mentally clear and emotionally calm and stable state. It can also be an action.
For example let’s take me. Few months ago it felt like it was impossible for me to fall asleep. So one night I said to my self “Enough!” And went to do research why it was so hard for me. Turns out using electronics before sleep makes it harder to fall asleep. But I just couldn’t go to sleep without touching my phone so I searched for alternatives. And I found it. It was a simple meditation breathing exercise. I was skeptical at first, but I thought I should give it a shot and I don’t regret it. Even now it helps me to fall asleep in 5 minutes! You can find it here along with some other cool exercises!
On to the point now we go
First things first get comfortable
Sit or lie comfortably. Be dressed comfortably (you can also get naked) relax the muscles you can – this may be tricky at first, but as soon as you relax a muscle focus on a different one, the first has a tendency to tense back up. With time and practice you will be able to relax all your muscles.Take a few deep, long breaths and make sure you hold each of them for a few seconds. You can use the 7-4-7 technique: breathe in for 7 seconds, hold it for 4 seconds, then exhale for 7 second. This helps if you can’t get your mind to shut up.
Close your eyes
Actually, do this as the first thing after sitting down. While it is very possible to meditate with eyes open, It’s difficult and I don’t recommend it. Thoughts will go into your head while you try to get rid of them
Focus so you can “unfocus”
What you’re trying to do in a meditation is to get into a state of pure awareness, consciousness, nothingness, stillness, thoughtless. In other words – you are trying to throw all the thoughts out of your mind, all the chatter and find out what remains when it’s all gone – that’s the ultimate meaning. Focus on something simple – I found that the easiest & most effective things to focus on are:
• Your own breath
• The sound of your heartbeat (you can hear it if you focus, in complete silence)
• Dropping water (not rain)
• The sound of a clock ticking
• Physical sensations (simply become aware: I am aware of how it feels to sit on this sofa. I am aware of how the air coming in and out of my nose feels on my skin. I am aware of all the sounds I hear…)
Let it flow
The biggest mistake people tend to make is that they try to focus really, really hard in order to get their minds clear of the thought-trains. Try to direct the thoughts, but don’t try to “overpower” them. If there’s a random thought that pops up, like “I would like a pizza… pizza is good because it has cheese on it..” just acknowledge it, then get back to whatever you were focusing on before – whether it was your breath or heartbeat. If you try too hard, you only get anxious. Just let it flow – after all, it doesn’t really matter. As long as you sit still, motionless, you can call it a meditation.
Here is a little test that can help you find out how long your meditation should be: Try the first one without a timer and try to meditate for as long as possible. When you feel you simply can’t take it anymore, open your eyes and check how long it was. Maybe it was 8 minutes? Then your meditation routine should then be 10 minutes per session, until you feel you can comfortably do more. If it was 15 minutes, set 20 although I doubt you can do 15 on your first try. Accept the challenge?
Prolong your meditations regularly – that is, if you practice every day and if you don’t, all of this is probably worthless. As soon as you can meditate for 15 minutes without getting any anxiety or stress, increase to 20 and so on. Get better on each try.
Can I move?
The point is not to move, but don’t take that too seriously. But if you are 5 minutes into the meditation and feel really still, time already stopped, but you just got a really serious, huge ITCH and it’s making you literally go crazy, just go and scratch it, or move the almost-dead leg if you need to – similar as in trying to fall asleep, you shouldn’t move but if you have to, go ahead.
The sound of silence
After a few minutes, if you did it right, a very interesting thing happens. First of all, slowly but surely you start losing your consciousness. Feeling is like falling asleep but you’re still perfectly awake and aware.
But, there’s another amazing thing:
You can hear the silence. You can literally hear the silence, and the longer/deeper you meditate, the louder it becomes. The outside sounds are more distant by each passing second and you feel overwhelmed in silence – it sounds like being on an airplane, sort of, but everyone describes it differently, so while I may try to communicate the feeling, you probably have to experience it for yourself in order to understand. One thing is for sure though: It is the most amazing feeling ever. Because you get completely disconnected from reality and all that remains is the state of Samandhi. Trust me when I say it feels better than any drug you have ever tried or any feeling you have ever felt.
You will probably feel refreshed after opening your eyes, as if you only woke up from a good, long night sleep. The biggest positive is that there’s a big chance you will realize something about yourself, your life, your current situation, whatever – and that realization will eventually lead you to take action which you wouldn’t normally take. This is how meditation can change lives.