Mediation is an amazing thing. It lowers blood pressure, decreases stress, improves relationships, and so much more. If all these benefits are true, why do we have such a hard time getting started? It’s like anything else. We know exercise is good for us, but we don’t do it nearly as much as we should. We know we shouldn’t smoke, yet so many people do. Fried foods, too much drinking, drugs, etc. there are so many things that we do which are bad for us. I’m here to tell you how to do something good. It’s easy to start and you don’t have to be a monk or in any weird cult.
I can tell you from personal experience that when I meditate I am less irritable. I feel a state of calm throughout most of the day. I let frustration and anger go a lost easier and I deal with stress more gracefully. I usually meditate in the early morning and when I have a client or teach a class later in the evening, I still feel relaxed if I’ve meditated. It’s a subtle difference, but a profound difference. My main reason for meditating is to stay calm and relaxed. Here are a few ways I get there without the rigamarole of sitting cross legged with my fingers in a mudra.
Take a deep breath. That’s it. Just stopping what you’re doing and taking a deep breath is going to give you pause. It’s going to allow you to focus for a moment. And that moment is really all you need to feel better and reset your mental attitude.
Close your eyes. Don’t do this if you’re driving, but a simple moment with your eyes closed and a deep breath brings you a sigh of relief. Go ahead, do it now. Feel what I mean. It’s amazing, right?
Pinch somebody. Or yourself. This is the easiest way to get present and after all, meditation is about being present and in the moment. We’re distracted when we’re thinking of too many things at once. One of the best ways to get present is to feel what’s around you. Touch your desk, pinch your own arm. Jolt yourself, in a loving way, out of the moment and into the present. This is just another technique to help you become more present.
Clap. A loud clap is another way to shock yourself into the present or out of confusion. When we’re thinking too much and stressing out over what may or may not happen, a loud noise is a perfect way to bring us back.
Nap. One of the best ways to find that sense of peace and calm is to take a nap. Seriously. You know when you really allow yourself an afternoon nap. If you’re a regular person who works during the week, do this on the weekend. Notice how you feel just as you nod off. It’s quite a freeing feeling to be completely relaxed. No meditation needed, just a simple shut eye.
Obviously, these are simple techniques to bring you into the moment. Once you have enough self control, you’ll actually find way more benefits in extended meditation. When you get there follow three simple fundamentals. Sit up with a straight spine, have a smooth even breath, and a single pointed focus. That’s all there is too it. The mind is always the toughest thing to wrangle which is why I teach people to pick a place that is peaceful like the beach or the top of a mountain. Focus on that point and when you’re mind is distracted, accept the distraction, and come back to your focal point. It’s that simple. You will experience benefits and I look forward to hearing how. You can always reach me @teddymcdonald. Until then, may you have inner peace my friends.
Originally published on the author’s website.