Developing a successful meditation practice is a skill that can be learned by anyone at any time in their lives. However, learning any new skill can be challenging in this distracted and busy times. Meditation and mindfulness methods in the west have been continually growing in popularity more and more.
Even mainstream medicine is touting the benefits of meditation for both work and home life. Successful meditation results from science, university studies, and even widespread use in corporations around the world. The west is finally discovering what the east has known for over ten thousand years or more!
Try these great 10 ideas for successful meditation:
1) Set and keep a daily schedule. Becoming skillful at anything requires regular practice. Meditating once a week is about as effective as brushing your teeth once a week. Make successful meditation a priority by reserving time each day for your meditation practice
2) Start small. Think of meditation as an exercise for your mind, focus, and patience. Controlling your thoughts is challenging. You have to walk before you can run. Start by meditating for only five minutes and build from there
3) Meditate in a comfortable position. It’s important to find a position that you can hold comfortably for at least as long as your meditation session. Discomfort is distracting and makes meditation more challenging.
4) It all starts with the breath. Making your breath the focus of your meditation has many advantages. You take your breath with you wherever you go. Also, you can control your breathing
5) Use a timer. Worrying about the time can also be a distraction. You can avoid this distraction by using a timer. You’ll have less desire to check the time and you don’t have to worry about being late for another activity.
6) Meditate for one minute each waking hour. Meditating for a minute each hour will quickly cement your successful meditation habit. It also helps to keep you focused and relaxed throughout the day. This time would be in addition to your longer meditation session
7) Experiment. Try meditating while walking or standing. It’s perfectly ok to meditate in a chair instead of sitting on the floor if it’s more comfortable or for health reasons. Counting your breaths might be more effective than not counting. Perhaps the morning works better than in the evening. Experiment with different techniques to see what works best for you.
8) Read about meditation. Spend a few minutes reading about meditation each day. You’ll learn more about the different meditation methods and techniques, you will also keep yourself inspired to meditate on a daily basis, and meditation will continue to become an even bigger part of your everyday life.
9) Practice patience. Meditation is simple, but it’s not easy. It takes focus and time to experience the benefits, and consistent daily effort to meditate effectively over longer periods. Take your time, try different methods of meditation from the many great traditions from around the world, and most importantly, focus on taking small steps so you can keep progressing in your practice.
10) Meditate everywhere. Meditating under ideal controlled, quiet, and peaceful conditions is the easiest way to learn. But even for the most experienced meditators, the most important times to meditate are often not the most convenient. Practice meditating when you’re stressed at work, the air conditioning is broken, and your boss is all over your back.
Build the habit of successful meditation daily. Meditation can enhance your life in many ways, both physically and mentally. It can take years to become an expert, but you’ll notice benefits after just a few days. Go slowly and enjoy the process!
Top 10 Profound Life Changes You Can Experience by Meditating
Though meditation has been around for thousands of years, it’s only now that meditation is becoming mainstream. Even the conservative medical community who only rely on science, are singing the praises of meditation more and more in peer-reviewed publications. Meditation is a simple and free tool that can enhance your life in many ways. If you’ve ever considered meditation as a life skill but (you are reading this article, hint, hint ;), now is the time to reconsider, the time you need to learn meditation is going to go by anyway, why not start today?
Successful meditation can enhance your life in many ways:
1. Meditation can increase self-confidence. Meditation can help to remove self-doubt and self-criticism. You will become more accepting of your shortcomings. When you are able to accept yourself as a more confident and fulfilled person, you will have a much better belief and a better feeling that others will accept you for who you are and have become as a result of meditating.
2. Meditation reduces stress and anxiety. During a successful meditation, you focus on something to the exclusion of all other thoughts. It’s not possible to feel stressed about your job or your love life for that matter when 100% of your attention is focused on something else during your meditation session. You develop the ability to regulate and moderate your emotions through successful meditation.
3. Meditation provides a method for learning about yourself. It’s natural that most of us possess a certain amount of delusion and denial when it comes to our personal thoughts, unusual and normal behaviors, and even obsessed behaviors and tendencies. Meditation encourages self-examination and detachment.
4. Meditation can help you to see the truth. Meditation can teach you how to remove preconceived ideas about many aspects of life, and you can learn how to put your emotions on the back burner while you calm down. Your newfound and skilled ability to make effective and more thought out intelligent decisions will grow as you meditate more and more.
Without the influence of your deep-seated beliefs and social enculturation and emotions, it’s much easier to catch a glimpse of the better you and the much-improved reality you can create.
5. Successful meditation gives your brain a rest. Your brain is constantly working. There’s not one moment of the day your brain isn’t running at full speed. Even while you’re dreaming deep into the night during the REM state, your brain is busy evolving and realistically creating your most powerful and meaningful life dreams.
* When you become an effective meditator, your brain finally gets a chance to rest. You’ll be completely surprised how good just taking five minutes of meditation during your day can improve everything around you. Many experienced meditators find that one minute of meditation per hour is very beneficial.
6. Meditation can improve concentration. Most traditional forms of effective and interesting meditation methods require focusing completely on a thought or object (this is called object meditation), commonly your breath. All of this object meditation for concentration method and regular practice will bleed over into the many other parts of your family, work, and relationships. You become good at what you practice and focus your life on.
7. Meditation can make you more accepting of others. When you’re able to realize from an objective mindset with meditation your own shortcomings and compassionately understand who you are, you’ll be able to much more easily extend that same compassion and understanding to others.
What would happen if just one or two million people took the time to learn how to meditate? I can tell you we would have a much-improved world indeed!
8. Meditation can prolong your life. Meditation has been shown by scientific research to effectively slow the aging process, including both physical benefits and mental efficiency. It’s possible this could increase longevity. Just think about it, at the very least, you’ll feel more grounded and focused, look better with age, and think clearer, sharper, and in a more efficient manner! Sounds like a win, win to me.
9. Successful meditation can boost your level of creativity. By eliminating your negative thoughts and beliefs, you’ll have greater access to your creative abilities. Having much lower levels of stress in your day to day life also will increase the opportunity to put your mind to good use in understanding what you truly want to accomplish in your life.
10. Meditation can enhance your health. In a 2008 study, 40 of 60 patients were able to effectively eliminate the need to take blood pressure medication after learning to meditate. Meditation has also been shown to enhance the function of the immune system and many other functions of the mind and body such as a decrease in immune function which is related to premature aging.
Meditation is one of the most powerful self-development tools to increase any aspect of your life you desire. A short successful meditation session each day can provide profound results. The benefits aren’t limited to your psychology. Studies have demonstrated physical benefits, too.
Consider adding meditation as a daily part of your life for 30 days and you will see the incredible results for yourself. Caution, you may not be the same person as you were 30 days ago!
How to Meditate Even if You’re Fidgety and Stiff
Do you want to meditate, but have trouble sitting still? For many adults, the most difficult part of meditation is finding a comfortable position. You may find your legs start to ache and feel stiff, or perhaps you shift your body around frequently keeping you from focusing on your meditation. Either way, it’s difficult to still your mind when it feels like your body is refusing to cooperate.
Luckily, you can enjoy the mental and physical health benefits of successful meditation even if you’re fidgety and stiff. Start with these proven strategies that will help you feel more at ease on the cushion.
How to Meditate when you’re fidgety
Studies show that being fidgety has its advantages, including burning more calories and living longer. On the other hand, excessive movements while you’re meditating can be distracting, so you may want to stop wagging your toes temporarily.
Try these techniques to calm your muscles:
1. Prepare yourself for successful meditation. Switching gears quickly from rushing around to sitting still can be a struggle. Smooth out the transition. Depending on your reason for meditating, spend some time before your session saying preparatory prayers or doing any quiet activity that you find soothing and uplifting.
2. Remember your purpose. Fidgeting can be an indication of boredom because you are not focused or lack of engagement in the present moment. Remind yourself about the incredible benefits you will experience and why meditation is important to you.
3. Fold your hands. Just pressing your hands together in a prayerful position or using a mudra can encourage you to be still. Experiment with different hand positions.
4. Hold something. Similarly, holding something with your hands makes it less likely you’ll engage in other gestures. You can use traditional meditation prayer beads or even any small object that has a spiritual meaning to you.
5. Touch a border. Fidgeting can also be associated with nervousness or anxiety, which can be troublesome if meditation brings up disturbing emotions for you as you will move through a mental and sometimes emotional clearing process. Sitting with your back resting lightly against a wall or your feet touching a pillow may provide a sense of security and reassurance.
6. Keep practicing. Fidgeting is like any habit. Each time you manage to overcome your jitters, you’re training yourself to make positive changes.
7. Respect your limits. You’re bound to squirm if you’re meditating too much too soon. Stick to brief meditative and easy sessions, you can always gradually increase your meditation time to a comfortable level that works for you.
How to Meditate When You’re Stiff
Very few adults can sit in a full lotus position during their first attempt at meditation. Learn how to work with the needs of your body.
Loosen up with these strategies:
1. Stretch regularly. Flexibility training will open up your hips and shoulders. Perform static stretches while watching TV, and dynamic stretches when you’re warming up before a workout.
2. Do yoga. While any kind of exercise can limber up your body, yoga is one of the most effective methods. Take a class or watch videos online. Practice at a studio or at home. Target the areas where you feel discomfort.
3. Warm-up. Heat can make your body instantly feel nimbler. Take a warm shower before you meditate or rub your hands over your legs and arms to stimulate your circulation. Drape a light blanket over your lap or shoulders.
4. Sit up straight. Proper alignment relieves aches and pains too. Check that you’re sitting with your weight on the center of your sit bones. Relax your shoulders and lift your chest.
5. Use props. Buy special meditation accessories or use any helpful objects or chairs you have at home to pamper and comfort your trouble spots. Put soft comfortable cushions or pillows under your knees, behind your back, or anywhere you feel stress creeping up so that your comfort level is good enough to focus and assist you in your meditation session.
6. Listen to your body. Any modification in your laying or sitting posture can be beneficial if it helps you to focus deeper and longer during your session. Sit on a chair or on a cushion. Stand up or move around when you need to.
With a few simple adjustments, you can meditate comfortably even if you tend to be restless or have trouble touching your toes. Bring greater happiness and peace into your life by developing a regular successful meditation practice.
8 Ways to Enhance Your Successful Meditation Practice
Meditation can be an effective way to reduce stress, achieve clarity, and attain a mentally calm state. It allows you to view the world from a perspective that isn’t tainted by your personal beliefs and past experiences.
Meditation is simple but challenging to do well. It wouldn’t hurt to have a few tricks up your sleeve. There are several tools, and processes to explore to enhance your meditation practice and receive even greater benefits over time.
Try these ideas for ways to enhance your successful meditation practice:
1. Be consistent. Have a time and place that you meditate each day. If you want to continue to become better and better at meditation, make it a daily part of your schedule at home and even at work if you can. You always brush your teeth at the same time each day. Do the same with your meditation practice.
● If possible, have a meditation-specific location where you meditate. This can be a spare room or a corner of the house that you can set aside for your practice. Make it comfortable and inspiring.
2. Have at least one longer session each week. While you can receive great benefits from meditating for as little as five minutes, there’s something magical that happens when you sit for an hour or more each day.
● Have a successful meditation session or two each week where you add five minutes each time until you’re up to an hour of sitting time. Feel free to go even further if you have the time.
3. Avoid expectations. Ok, let’s be realistic, you can expect to have good days and bad days when meditating on a regular basis, it’s just part of the process of learning something new. There are days you feel that you could sit there for hours. There are other days when your mind is running wild, and it feels like you have no control. Both are fine.
Just be ok with each adventure you may experience, become aware of the experience, embrace the event, and continue to sit with whatever is happening during each meditation session. It’s all good, if you continue to have problems, seek out and experienced meditation teachers in your local area.
4. Avoid meditating when you are fatigued. With enough practice, you can and most likely at some point fall asleep even in the sitting position! If you’re extremely tired, you’d be better off taking a short nap and meditating at another time.
5. Meditate throughout the day. Sitting on your meditation cushion even under ideal conditions isn’t the only place to meditate. Try meditating in many different environments and explore how you do and feel during those times.
● The real trick is to be able to meditate while sitting elsewhere, like in a hot, noisy, smelly bus. Can you focus and fully concentrate on your breathing and still fully experience your surroundings under those circumstances? This is great training and will allow you to find out what works best for your meditation practice.
6. Meditate on an empty stomach. It’s harder to meditate when you have a big meal digesting in your tummy. You feel tired and sluggish. Your best meditation sessions will occur when you’re alert and able to concentrate.
● Try not to meditate when you’re excessively hungry either.
7. Minimize interruptions. Shut the door and let everyone know that you want an hour of peace and quiet. Turn off your phone. This is your time. Take control of it.
8. Try meditating with a group. If you only meditate with a group, try meditating alone. It’s a different experience, and you’ll gain a different perspective. You might even make a new friend or two with the same desire to learn how to meditate effectively.
Whether you’re just learning to meditate or a seasoned pro, you can enhance your successful meditation practice further. Meditation is one of the best ways to relieve stress and increase your enjoyment of life.
Consider all the many methods and techniques from the great meditation religions as to how you can strengthen your ability to meditate and reap the greatest and most lasting benefits from your successful meditation practice you so richly deserve!