Let’s be truthful. Meditation is something you choose to do and is a way of life. It’s not about taking out time to do it but more making time to include it in your routine. It’s not about starting it and stopping at a certain point. And it’s definitely not something many think about adding to their day, if it’s not present for them already. Meditation, in a very relatable way, is about self-care and treating yourself with respect. It’s about being at one with the present and being able to get focused no matter what else might be happening around you.
It’s World Meditation Day on 21st May and I wanted to mark the occasion and show how easy it is to make sure you fit meditation into your everyday. If you say you don’t have time, I’m here to tell you that it’s really not as difficult as you may think. And once you get started, it may not feel like the chore you might see it as right now.
(Also, as a quick disclaimer, I will probably be leaning towards mindfulness techniques in this blog because that’s the technique I use.)
Meditation can work and fit in for everyone
There are meditation techniques that can work around any schedule. For example, there are mindfulness techniques that can bring you back to the present moment and give you focus and calm in just one minute. Granted, it may be advised that you need to have a designated place at home or somewhere which helps you instantly switch off but it is as easy as going into a quiet room/place anywhere and getting there in just one minute. This is not about drowning out the outside noise but more about stopping you thinking and worrying about the past or future and helping bring you into the present moment. And the one-minute meditation examples out there that really do work so there aren’t many people who can’t take out just a minute!
You don’t need to stop the buzz of your mind to meditate
We all know and live with the feeling of your mind buzzing all the time. For many in the last year, it’s been virtually impossible to switch off fro “life” or to get even a minute to oneself. I totally hear that. However, if you’re skeptical about meditating because you genuinely feel you;re not going to be able to to focus, get that myth out of your head completely. There are meditation techniques out there which encourage you to think whatever your mind thinks and to let it go so that your focus comes in more quickly. There are other ways to empty your mind too – you just need to find one that works.
You can plan ahead when you want to meditate
With everyone’s calendars being pretty packed these days, even if only filled with virtual meetings, it’s often preferred that a meditation time is planned and put into your diary in advance. This could be done in a lunch break, five minutes before you begin work or even five minutes before you get out of bed. It doesn’t need to be every day either but many prefer to practice meditation daily to ensure that it becomes something that is definitely a way of life. It is advised that you choose a relatively quiet space or room to do the meditation.
Meditation is not just about peace of mind but also about your body
Yes, who knew!? Meditation is often thought of as being something you do to clear your mind or to calm yourself when you’re stressed or anxious. Not many would see this as being related to your body but when you’re meditating, there re techniques which encourage you to make sure your body is not tense, so that you are succumbing to the particular meditative state you are using. It’s advisable that, as you may hold tension in certain parts of your body, you should consciously relax those. If you’re unaware of this, there’s a mindfulness technique called “body scan” which is quite specific.
If you find yourself fidgeting in just one place, try to find what suits you
Honestly, everyone is different so if none of the known meditation techniques our there suit you, it’s really not the end of the world. You can walk and meditate, you can also listen to music to help you focus and there are also a number of apps which can help you calm your body and mind to start meditating. There are a number of possibilities and realistically, I’ve gone through my own fair share of advised techniques which haven’t suited me before arriving at one that actually seems to work. You don’t need to stick to just one either! Just do what feels right for you.
I would recommend mindfulness/meditation to anyone and everyone. It really provides a great anchor to you when you feel stresses, need focus or even if all you want is a safe place to rejuvenate quickly. Try it, you’ll feel a difference.
Photo courtesy: Leonard Cotte