While meditation has recently gained popularity in the United States, it has been practiced for thousands of years. The practice has a link to religious traditions, most notably Buddhism. Asia was the only place where people meditated before the rest of the world caught on in the 20th century. During the 1960s and 1970s, it became popular in the West and was often linked to the hippie culture of that time. In this article, we have analyzed the different types of meditation.
Meditation has also been incorporated into various treatment modalities over the last few decades, including mindfulness-based stress reduction; an approach that incorporates mindfulness and meditation to help people cope with stress, depression, anxiety, and other mental health conditions.
What is Meditation?
How do you become a meditator? In mindfulness meditation, we learn to pay attention to the breath as it comes in and out, as well as to notice when our minds wander from this task. This practice of returning to the breath strengthens the attention and mindfulness muscles.
When we pay attention to our breath, we are learning how to return to and remain in the present moment—how to intentionally anchor ourselves in the here and now, without judgment.
The concept of mindfulness appears straightforward—the practice necessitates patience. Indeed, renowned meditation teacher Sharon Salzberg recalls how her first experience with meditation demonstrated how quickly the mind becomes distracted by other tasks. “I figured, okay, what will it be, 800 breaths before my mind wanders?
Types of Meditation
Meditation can take many types, but the two most common are focused meditation and mindfulness meditation.
1. Focused Meditation
This is one of the types of meditation and it entails concentrating on something intently to stay in the present moment and slow down the inner dialogue.
Unlike traditional meditation, which requires you to focus on nothing to quiet your mind, focused meditation requires you to stay in the present moment while focusing entirely on one thing. Similar to mindfulness meditation techniques, you typically focus on sensory stimuli such as sounds, visual items, tactile sensations, tastes, smells, and even your breathing.
Steps to Focused Meditation
Starting your practice requires only a few simple steps that will become more natural with time. Begin with five-minute sessions and gradually increase to longer periods as you become more accustomed to the exercise.
- Select a focal point for your attention. Focusing on your breath is a good place to start because it is usually the first step in any meditation practice.
- Lie down in a comfortable position. Sit up straight. Sit right on the edge of your chair, relaxing into your pelvic bones with your feet on the floor.
- Allow your body to unwind. Relax your shoulders and take a deep breath from your belly. You can cross your legs, but you don’t have to if another position is more comfortable; just as long as you can fully relax without falling asleep.
- Concentrate your attention on your chosen target. Concentrate on the sensations of your focal point, such as the sound, smell, sight, and details. The idea is to simply experience it, to be fully present in the moment, rather than to think about it.
- Quiet your inner critic. If your internal monologue begins to analyze your target or rehash stressful situations from the day; worry about the future, make a grocery list, or anything else, gently return your attention to your -chosen target and the sensation it provides.
- Don’t be concerned about failure. Don’t let your inner perfectionist beat you up for doing it “wrong” if you find your mind engaging you and realize you’re not being fully present -with the sensations of your chosen target.
Tips for Focused Meditation
Though you can begin practicing focused meditation in just five steps, this does not imply that each session will be easy, especially at first. Keep the following suggestions in mind as you work to develop a practice that is a channel to your experience, environment, and enjoyment:
- Give it some time. Meditation frequently necessitates practice. If you expect to do it perfectly, you may cause yourself more stress. Disappointment may prevent you from persevering.
- Begin with short sessions. For beginners, five minutes is sufficient. Gradually increase the length of your sessions. This Particular types of meditation becomes easier and more effective with practice.
- Experiment with another meditation technique. If the experience is frustrating and you don’t want to continue, you might have better luck with other types of meditation, such as karate breathing meditation.
- Determine the best time for you. Focused meditation (or any meditation practice) is a popular way for many people to start their day. A morning meditation practice can help you stay calm and remind you to be mindful throughout the day. Others choose to meditate after work to unwind from their hectic schedules and refocus on their families and homes. Consider it a great way to leave work stress where it belongs—at work.
Benefits of Focused Meditation
Focused meditation can help you improve your attention and focus for longer periods. When you focus your attention on a specific object during meditation, you learn to pay less attention to other distractions. Many people find that focused meditation helps them feel less bothered by disturbances such as a loud car alarm or the sounds of people arguing over time.
Focused meditation can also help you regulate your emotions. You learn to react to your internal feelings in the same way that you would to a loud car alarm. You notice and accept the distraction, but you don’t dwell on it.
2. Mindfulness Meditation
Mindfulness Meditation is a mental training technique that teaches you to slow down racing thoughts, let go of negativity, and calm your mind and body. It combines meditation with mindfulness practice, which is a mental state in which you focus on “the now” to acknowledge and accept your thoughts, feelings, and sensations without judgment.
Mindfulness meditation techniques vary, but in general, it entails deep breathing and awareness of one’s body and mind. Mindfulness meditation does not necessitate any special equipment or preparation (no need for candles, essential oils, or mantras, unless you enjoy them).
How to Practice Mindfulness Meditation
Learning mindfulness meditation is simple enough to do on your own, but a teacher or program can also help you get started, especially if you’re doing it for health reasons. Here are some easy steps to get you started on your own.
1. Make Yourself at Home
Locate a quiet and comfortable location. Sit comfortably in a chair or on the floor, with your head, neck, and back straight but not stiff. It’s also a good idea to dress comfortably and loosely so it does not distract you.
However, because this practice can be done anywhere for any length of time, there is no need for a dress code.
2. Consider Using a Timer
While not required, a timer (preferably with a soft, gentle alarm) can help you focus on meditation and forget about time and eliminate any excuses for stopping and doing something else.
Because many people lose track of time while meditating, it can also help you avoid meditating for too long. Allow yourself time after meditation to become aware of where you are and to gradually rise.
While some people meditate for longer periods, even a few minutes every day can help. Begin with a 5-minute meditation session and gradually increase to 10 or 15-minute sessions until you are comfortable meditating for 30 minutes at a time.
3. Concentrate on your breathing
Develop an awareness of your breathing, paying attention to the sensation of air moving in and out of your body as you breathe. Feel your belly rise and fall as the air enters and exits your nostrils.
4. Pay Attention to Your Thoughts
The goal is not to stop thinking, but to become more comfortable with being a “witness” to your thoughts. Don’t ignore or suppress your thoughts when they arise. Simply take note of them, stay calm, and use your breathing as a guide. Consider your thoughts to be clouds passing by; observe how they shift and change as they float by. Repeat this as many times as you need to while meditating.
5. Take Some Time Off
If you find yourself getting carried away in your thoughts—whether with worry, fear, anxiety, or hope return to your breathing and observe where your mind went without judgment. Don’t be too hard on yourself if this happens; mindfulness is the practice of returning to your breath and refocusing on the present moment.
6. Get a mobile app
Consider downloading an app if you’re having trouble practicing mindfulness meditation on your own (like Calm or Headspace). That offers free meditations and teaches you a variety of tools to help you stay focused throughout the day.
Impact of Mindfulness Meditation
Regular mindfulness meditation practice is beneficial to both your physical and mental health. Among them are the following:
- Stress reduction: Mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR), a standardized therapeutic approach to mindfulness meditation, has been shown to reduce stress symptoms in healthy people.
- Reduced heart rate: Heart disease is one of the leading causes of death in the United States, and research suggests that mindfulness may benefit your heart.
- Increased immunity: According to research, mindfulness practices may boost your body’s resistance to illness. One study looked at the effects of mindfulness and exercise on immune function. They discovered that participants in an eight-week mindfulness course improved their immune function more than those in the exercise group.
- Improved sleep: Research has shown that practicing mindfulness meditation can improve sleep and even be used to treat certain sleep disorders. According to one 2019 study, mindfulness meditation significantly improved sleep quality.
Types of Meditation Practices
Meditation techniques are generally classified into two types by researchers: concentrative and non-concentrative. Concentrative techniques involve focusing on something outside of oneself, such as the flame of a candle, the sound of an instrument, or a mantra. Non-concentrative meditation, on the other hand, can include a broader focus such as sounds in your surroundings, internal body states, and even your breathing. It is important to note that these techniques can overlap—meditation can be both concentrative and non-concentrative.
There are numerous types of meditation practices. Consider the following meditation technique categories to be a starting point for understanding the practices and differences between -some of the main options, rather than an exhaustive list.
1. Spiritual Meditation
Meditation is an important component of Eastern spiritual traditions such as Buddhism, Taoism, and Hinduism. Spiritual meditation may include elements of silent, spoken, or chanted prayer, depending on the tradition. Meditation promotes a deeper connection with the Divine when practiced in a religious setting.
Meditation is more focused on self-awareness and self-actualization in non-theistic traditions such as Buddhism and Taoism. Non-theistic spiritual meditation, in this sense, assists practitioners in becoming the best human beings they can be. Whether secular or non-secular, the insights gained through spiritual meditation can assist us in developing qualities of benevolence and connection.
2. Mindfulness Meditation
This meditation technique, which has grown in popularity in the West, is based on Buddha’s teachings. Mindfulness meditation can be useful in understanding how our minds work.
This self-awareness serves as a foundation for overcoming dissatisfaction, impatience, intolerance, and a variety of other habits that prevent us from living fuller, happier lives.
If you want to master this technique, there are several steps you must take. These are some examples:
- Recognize your reality, beginning with being aware of your body and thoughts.
- Observing your thoughts and recognizing them without judging or manipulating them.
- Returning to the meditation object, such as the breath.
- Recognizing and appreciating the present moment.
To be a complete meditation technique, mindfulness should combine concentration and awareness.
3. Movement Meditation
Many types of meditation encourage you to sit still, but movement meditation focuses on the body in motion. Walking meditation is a type of mindful movement that is also associated with yoga, tai chi, and other martial arts. It is extremely beneficial to commit to some form of physical discipline.
Once you’ve mastered being present in your body during movement meditation, you can broaden your awareness to include anything that keeps you moving, such as gardening, walking the dog, doing the dishes, playing golf, and so on. In each case, the object of meditation is your body’s movement.
This technique is used in conjunction with mindful sitting meditation. It may be a good option for people who have difficulty sitting still for long periods. Additionally, for those who naturally find it easier to concentrate while moving.
4. Focused Meditation
This technique requires us to focus solely on whatever we are doing: it is the polar opposite of multitasking. We see and admire the exceptional concentration power of athletes, musicians, chess players, and others. And we may forget that to succeed in life, we must be able to focus on the task at hand as well. We’ve convinced ourselves that multitasking is required to complete everything on our to-do lists.
Whatever the subject of your meditation, you should give it your undivided attention. When you eat, you are aware of the sensations associated with eating; when you exercise, you are aware of the sensations associated with exercise. If you notice your mind wandering, simply acknowledge it and return your attention to what you’re doing. Your ability to concentrate will improve as you commit to the practice, and you may rediscover the joy of being present.
5. Visualization Meditation
This meditation technique involves recalling an image that evokes a specific feeling or quality. Simply close our eyes and visualize a beautiful mountain lake, an open sky, a familiar landscape, or anything else that speaks to us. In one well-known mindfulness exercise, we imagine our thoughts and emotions as leaves on a stream that are gently swept downstream by the current. This is said to separate meditators from unwanted mental activity and bring a sense of peace.
On a more formal level, visualization meditations from the Tibetan tradition are religious practices in general. Visualizing a mandala or meditation deity during these practices provides practitioners with a foundation for cultivating innate qualities such as compassion and wisdom. Because of the complexities of these types of spiritual practices, instructions must be received from a skilled teacher – before the student makes a serious commitment to practice.
6. Chanting Meditation
Chanting and mantra meditation are recommended by many spiritual paths, ranging from Western religions to Buddhist and Hindu traditions. The mind should be focused on the sound of the words and the melody while chanting. Western traditions, too, encourage meaning-making. A repetitive sound, word, or phrase is used in mantra meditation and other Eastern traditions to clear the mind and allow our spiritual strengths to reveal themselves. Mantras are sometimes, but not always, accompanied by a melody. One common sound used in mantra meditation is “Om.”
Those who enjoy chanting meditation frequently discover that it cultivates a peaceful, yet alert, state of mind. It promotes deeper awareness and a stronger connection to positive human qualities such as compassion and confidence as a spiritual practice. It is critical, as with any true spiritual practice, to find a qualified teacher.
Types of Meditation in Yoga
Many people ask me if meditation is part of types of yoga. The technical answer is no. They both appear in the same text, the Upanishads, and while they are related, meditation is a separate entity. However, combining yoga and meditation is always a good idea. The wonderful thing about yoga meditation techniques is that they have so many different advantages, especially when combined.
Best Yogic Meditation Techniques and Practices
Just a heads-up: I’m going to start with a basic method and then share some more serious yoga meditation exercises, so you can pick and choose depending on whether you’re a beginner, intermediate, or advanced yogini.
Practice yoga while meditating.
Mantras, mudras, Kundalini, Nada yoga, and other forms of yogic meditation are available. Still, if you’re new to the practice, you might want to start by simply being more mindful while doing yoga. This is an excellent starting point for combining meditation and yoga.
This is not the proper way to meditate on yoga. I’m not impressing Patanjali in any way. However, if you want to start with yoga meditation techniques, begin by practicing basic mindfulness while in various asanas.
I recommend Iyengar or Yin yoga for a naturally meditative yoga sequence. These are slower yogic systems that allow you to reflect mindfully. They are the most suitable yoga for meditation.
1. Nada Yoga
Nada yoga is a type of sound meditation. Here’s how to go about it.
Nada yoga instructions:
- Begin by playing some soothing healing sounds, such as a Tibetan singing bowl or Kundalini Yoga music.
- Lie down in a comfortable position with good posture. The simplest method is to do it while in Shavasana. Lie on your back on the ground. Make sure your spine is in good shape (place a blanket under the small of your spine for extra comfort). Extend your ankles a little. Allow your neck to relax and lengthen. Shut your eyes.
- Concentrate your attention on the sound of the music you’re listening to. Your attention should be to the music. If thoughts arise, simply label them as you would in Vipassana and return to your meditation on the sound. Your mind will begin to relax, and you will feel as if you are one with the music. Continue to focus on the music.
- Once you feel one with the music, start tuning in to your inner sound. Pay attention to the sounds that your mind and body make. Consider these sounds. Make an effort to blend in with these sounds. Continue meditating on this sound until you hear the ultimate sound, “Para Nada”; the universal sound manifesting in “Om.”
Mantras are within religion and spirituality. They are also a yogic practice. Some people believe that mantras originated in yoga, but this is not the case. Mantras are one of the many types of sound meditation. You focus your attention on sacred vocal sounds such as “Om.”
This is one of the best yoga meditations for total relaxation and inner stillness. It is a popular method in Kundalini Yoga. So, if you’re looking for ways to activate Kundalini energy, you might try chanting mantras like “Sa Ta Na Ma” and “Wahe Guru.”
According to Deepak Chopra [founder of The Copra Center], “mantras serve as a vehicle for the mind to transition from diversity to unity.” When you concentrate your entire mind on a mantra, you achieve mind unification.
3. Chakra Dhyana
Yoga teacher Paul Grilley explains in his book Chakra Theory And Meditation that the chakras are energy centers through which prana (life force) flows. The problem is that your chakras can become blocked, resulting in a variety of physical and mental health issues.
According to Patanjali, we can meditate on the chakras to open them and restore prana flow. This has numerous health benefits and is a great way to improve overall well-being.
4. Third Eye (Ajna Chakra)
If you’re thinking, “Third Eye Meditation is just another chakra meditation,” then you’re correct. The truth is that Third Eye Meditation is critical. It begs to be included in this list of types of yogic meditation techniques. If I didn’t include this technique on this list, Sadhguru and Paramahansa Yogananda would throw me under the bus.
We use the yoga meditation technique of Ajna Meditation to open the third eye. This usually works in conjunction with the Shambhavi Mudra (Eyebrow Gazing) and traditional meditation.
Opening the third eye is said to develop the five siddhis:
- Trikālajñatvam: to be aware of the past, present, and future.
- Advandvam: heat, cold, and other dualities tolerance
- Para Citta ādi abhijñatā understanding the minds of others
- Agni Arka Ambu viṣa ādīnām pratiṣṭambhaḥ: examining the effects of fire, sun, water, and poison.
- Aparjayah: the ability to remain unconquered by others.
When I practice Third Eye meditation, I find that I gain many insights into my mind and life, some of which have truly aided my personal development.
5. Trataka (“Still Looking”)
According to the Journal of Traditional and Complementary Medicine, this is one of the best yogic meditation techniques for cultivating inner-stillness and concentration. It also opens the mind to psychic powers, according to Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh [Dynamics of Meditation].
Here’s how to do Trataka:
- Place a lit candle about a meter or so in front of you on a table or shrine. Sit close, but not so close that you burn your face on the candle.
- Keep your gaze fixed on the candle.
- Concentrate on the candle’s flame.
- Maintain your focus on the flame and continue to meditate on it. Take 25 deep breaths.
Finally, close your eyes. In your mind’s eye, you will see the candle.
6. Bhakti Yoga Meditation
Bhakti yoga meditation technique is one of the more spiritual types of meditation in yoga. It is one of the trinity of meditations described in the Bhagavad Gita according to Michael C. Brannigan; [Striking a Balance: A Primer in Traditional Asian Values].
According to Yoga Journal, Bhakti is a “path to self-realization, to having an experience of oneness with everything.” It all comes down to showing your devotion to your deity. It is a sophisticated technique that is not suitable for beginners. When we practice Bhakti, we meditate on a deity to achieve oneness. If you are spiritual, you will enjoy this. You’ve probably heard Sadhguru and Paramahansa Yogananda talk about it, and it’s a fantastic method.
7. Dhyana Yoga (Jnana)
Many of my students have spent years practicing asanas but have only recently begun to explore the mental aspects. When people ask me, “What is meditation in yoga?” I tell them Jnana. Dhyana is the oldest form of yoga meditation and was first mentioned in the Upanishads.
There is a passage in the Upanishads (classical Hindu texts) where Arjuna discusses Dhyana with Lord Krishna. The yogic path, he claims, consists of devotional service (bhakti), action (karma), meditation (dhyana), and knowledge (jnana). To walk the yogic path properly, we must practice all of these aspects.
8. Kundalini Yoga Meditation
Everyone likes to throw around the term “Kundalini” as if it were the year’s must-have fashion item. What exactly is kundalini meditation? Yogi Bhajan introduced it to the West as a yoga meditation technique. We use kundalini meditation to awaken kundalini energy (powerful feminine energy dormant at the base of the spine). This promotes spiritual growth.
The thing is, even though everyone throws the term “kundalini” around like it’s a bag of chips, it’s a big deal. There are a lot of risks of doing kundalini meditations. That is why you should study it thoroughly.
9. Kriya Yoga Meditation Techniques
Kriya yoga is a set of meditative exercises taught by Paramahamsa Yogananda, an Indian yogi guru. This is deep stuff. Very deep. Probably too in-depth for your average yoga-pants wearer. However, if you’re cool enough to be a proper spiritual yogi, you’ll enjoy it. Kriya yoga incorporates various levels of pranayama, mantra, and mudra practice.
These are said to aid spiritual development according to Timothy Miller, author of the book America’s Alternative Religions. Yogananda stated that the Kriya Yogi is dedicated to “directing life to the six centers of the spine that relate to the zodiac.”
I know: your mother inform you that Tantra is a sex cult in which Sting was involved. Your mother, on the other hand, only heard a snippet of the story. Tantra, while it does include some sexual techniques, is much deeper than that.
Tantra is about as deep as the Marianas Trench—that is, really, really deep. It entails a variety of meditative techniques and contemplations. The text Vijnanabhairava Tantra alone contains 108 meditations, several of which are profound.
Pratyahara is not solely a meditative yogic practice. It’s more of a yogic mind training system that involves blocking out external stimuli in order to protect your mind. Prathyahara is defined by Patanjali as “withdrawal from the senses.”
Types of Meditation in Buddhism
You’re probably aware that mindfulness and meditation, both of which are becoming increasingly popular, have Buddhist roots. But did you know that there are numerous Buddhist schools, each with its own set of meditation techniques and methods? This is because Buddhism spread far and wide after the historic Buddha, Siddhartha Gautama, lived in the 6th century BCE. It absorbed some of the characteristics and spiritual strengths of the lands where it was implanted as it spread.
All forms of Buddhism – and, by extension, Buddhist meditation techniques – arose from the Buddha’s insights into the nature of existence, the causes of suffering and happiness, and guidelines for living a wholesome and constructive life. Buddhist meditation practices have now spread beyond the borders of the countries where they originated and are more widely available than ever before.
How do Buddhists Meditate?
Tibetan visualization practices, Zen, vipassana, Pure Land, Nichiren, and a variety of other Buddhist forms of meditation are now taught and practiced throughout the Western world. Below are three inspiring methods; if you dig a little deeper, you’ll undoubtedly find many more!
Shamatha (mindfulness) is a well-known Buddhist practice that focuses on cultivating calmness, clarity, and equanimity. The cultivation of these qualities, with the right guidance and commitment, can eventually lead to deep inner peace. It can lead to profound insights and spiritual awakening when combined with vipassana (awareness) practices. The early stages of mindfulness meditation are essentially non-denominational, and anyone, regardless of faith tradition, can practice them.
2. Metta, also known as loving-kindness
Metta, or lovingkindness meditation, is another popular method for how to practice Buddhist meditation. This meditation can also be practiced in a variety of ways. They begin with a period of amatha to settle the mind and prepare it to be receptive.
In one method, we begin by directing our wishes for happiness and lovingkindness toward ourselves. Then we open it up and direct loving-kindness toward someone or something we care about. Then, someone, we have a neutral feeling about, followed by someone we have issues with or even an enemy. Ultimately, regardless of how we feel about them, our love flows equally to all beings everywhere. This type of meditation is about feeling the love and radiating it out until the distinct edges that normally categorize us -as “me, friend, enemy, etc.” fade away and what is left is pure and simple benevolence.
3. Contemplative Meditation
Some fundamental beliefs are shared by Buddhist teachings. Practitioners are encouraged to reflect on them in a contemplative, focused manner. This thought could be incorporated into a practice session. One of the most well-known musings is titled “The Four Thoughts that Transform the Mind.” Their goal is to give us a reason to sit down and practice instead of, say, spending the next two hours on social media or in a shopping mall. In summary, these four thoughts are:
- I have the option of devoting my energy to gaining wisdom, compassion, and the ability to help others. Many other people, as well as other forms of life, such as animals, do not have this option. I recognize the value of this opportunity and vow not to squander it.
- However, no one knows how long this precious life will last. Everything shifts. My entire being is dependent on an out-breath followed by an in-breath. There is no time to waste!
- Everything has a cause, and every action has repercussions. This demonstrates the truth of interdependence – and implies that our actions have a greater impact than we may realize.
- We will be separated from all of the material things to which we are attached at some point. So much effort for so little long-term gain! Doesn’t it make more sense to focus our efforts on being of service by honing the valuable qualities of wisdom, compassion, and spirituality?
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How to Practice Meditations
While there are numerous types of meditation and ways to practice them, learning a basic meditation for beginners is a good place to start.
- Select a quiet, distraction-free location. Turn off your phone, television, and any other sources of distraction. If you want to listen to music, choose something soothing and repetitive.
- Establish a time limit. If you’re just starting out, you might want to stick to shorter sessions of 5 to 10 minutes.
- Pay attention to your body and find a comfortable position. You can sit cross-legged on the floor or in a chair for as long as you feel comfortable sitting for several minutes at a time.
- Pay attention to your breathing. Experiment with taking deep breaths that expand your belly and then slowly exhaling. Take note of how each breath feels.
- Pay attention to your thoughts. The goal of meditation is not to clear your mind; your mind will inevitably wander. Instead, whenever you notice your thoughts wandering, gently bring your attention back to your breath. Don’t judge or analyze your thoughts; instead, return your attention to your deep breathing.
Impact of Types of Meditation
Consciousness is frequently compared to a stream, shifting and changing smoothly as it flows through the landscape. Meditation is one deliberate method for altering the flow of this stream and thus altering how you perceive and respond to the world around you.
Research shows that meditation can have both physiological and psychological effects. Positive physiological effects include decreased physical arousal, decreased respiration rate, decreased heart rate, changes in brain wave patterns, and reduced stress.
Other psychological, emotional, and health-related advantages of meditation include:
- Improved symptoms management for conditions such as anxiety disorders, depression, sleep disorders, pain issues, and high blood pressure.
- Improved stress management abilities.
- Alterations in various aspects of attention and mindfulness.
- Enhanced self-awareness
- Better emotional well-being.
- Working memory and fluid intelligence have both improved.
- Increased immunity.
- Increased empathy for oneself and others
- Relief from headaches.
While experts do not fully understand how meditation works, research has shown that it can have a variety of positive effects on overall health and psychological well-being.
Tips for the Various Types of Meditation
If you want to try meditation, there are some tips and tricks to help you start the beneficial meditation practice.
- Begin slowly. Begin with short sessions of 5 to 10 minutes per day and gradually work your way up to longer sessions.
- Create a timetable. Try meditating at the same time every day, for example, for a few minutes first thing in the morning.
- Make yourself at home. One option is to sit cross-legged on the floor, but comfort is the most important factor. You must be able to sit for several minutes without becoming uncomfortable, stiff, or restless.
- Pay attention to how you’re feeling. Breathe naturally and pay attention to the feelings and sensations you feel as you inhale and exhale.
- Do not try to suppress your emotions. When you meditate, your mind is bound to wander, which can lead to uncomfortable or even distressing thoughts and feelings. The goal isn’t to get rid of such thoughts. Instead, acknowledge these thoughts without judging them and gently return your attention to your breathing.
There is a meditation practice for everyone, whether you want to reduce stress or find spiritual enlightenment, find stillness, or flow-through movement. Don’t be afraid to venture outside of your comfort zone and experiment with different types. Often, a little trial and error are required before you find the one that fits.
“Meditation isn’t supposed to be forced,” Dessy says. “If we force it, it becomes a chore.” Gentle, regular practice becomes sustaining, supportive, and enjoyable over time.
Allow yourself to be open to new possibilities. There are so many different types of meditation that if one isn’t working or feels uncomfortable, try another.
Frequently Asked Questions
What should you not say during mediation?
Always” and Never” “Statements:
Likewise, if you say, “You NEVER arrive on time for our meetings,” you may find yourself in a discussion about the time(s) when the person DID arrive on time for the meeting. Simply avoiding these statements allows you to make better use of your mediation time.
What happens if mediation is unsuccessful?
When Mediation Is Ineffective
If your court-ordered mediation fails, you still have the option of proceeding to trial and litigating a decision. It is more expensive if mediation fails and the case is remanded to court. The failed mediation process, as well as the litigation process, must still be paid for.
How many times can mediation be postponed?
The Office does not encourage mediation rescheduling and requires compelling reasons to do so. In any case, no more than one rescheduling is permitted per party.