Have you always wanted to start meditating…but don’t know how? It takes a little instruction, but it’s easier than you may think.
As yogis have known for centuries and scientists more recently discovered, the benefits of meditation are profound!
Studies show, that meditation can help you:
• LOSE WEIGHT
• Vastly IMPROVE COMMUNICATION + RELATIONSHIPS
• REDUCE ANXIETY + DEPRESSION
• OVERCOME ADDICTION
• SHARPEN YOUR THINKING and
• MASTER YOUR EMOTIONS
When you meditate, you access deeper brainwave states, helping to clear
distracting thoughts, reduce stress and boost brainpower while cultivating a
spiritual connection and reaching deeper states of awareness and wholeness.
Meditation trains us to use the inevitable challenges of life as opportunities to
grow. This class breaks down and demystifies meditation.
Here are my tips on how to start meditating.
1. Get comfortable.
We tend to make meditation more complicated and challenging than
necessary. Take it easy. Start by taking a comfortable seat. If you’re flexible,
sit on the floor, on a meditation cushion, bolster or blanket (hips higher than
your knees). If you’re not, sit in a chair with your feet on the floor.
2. Make it a ritual.
One of the most lucrative ways to coax the mind into submission is to create a
ritual. Set a clearly designated space for meditation. This can be as simple as
a candle, picture or stone, thoughtfully placed.
Practice at the same time every day. Start with the same protocol for each
meditation. Routine triggers the mind out of the left brain (logical, linear) and
into the right hemisphere (intuitive, non-linear).
3. Sit tall.
Sit tall. Straighten your spine. Sit in a chair or against the wall if
you need to. Lengthen the spine to help increase circulation and keep you
4. Start where you are.
If 10 minutes seems overwhelming, begin with 5. After a
week, begin to add 1 min. to your practice each week until you build up to 30
min. (or more) at a time.
5. Keep your thoughts gentle.
Ultimately, it is all about your relationship to yourself. The way
you do anything is the way you do everything. Meditation teaches us radical
acceptance, compassion and unconditional love. Surrender to exactly who you are and what is happening – Right here, right now. Smile.
6. Note your excuses.
Meditation is a practice of self-inquiry. Observe the excuses you tell yourself.
“I’m too tired.” “I don’t have time.” You can carve 5 – 10 min. out of your day.
Notice how your mind rationalizes breaking your commitment. No judgment.
Just observation and understanding. Then, recommit.
7. Find a meditation buddy.
Accountability is the answer to your excuses. Find a buddy. We all have an
overactive, unruly mind. It’s built that way! Find a friend who is also beginning
to meditate, join a Facebook group or online course. Your struggle is
normal…and it will get easier.
8. Practice Makes Perfect.
Or at least perfectly imperfect. As the great Ashtanga guru, Patthabi Jois says…”Practice. Practice. Practice. All is coming.” Like anything, we get better with practice. Think of your meditation as bicep curls for the muscle of your mind. You are training your brain to focus, concentrate and let go. Over time, with consistency…you will become more skillful.
9. Just Breathe.
The breath is a gateway beyond the mind. Our mind is addicted to analyzing
the past or projecting into the future. The breath is only ever right here, right
now. Focus on your breath to anchor the mind into the present moment.
10. Start a “Benefit book”.
End your practice by observing the benefits of your practice. How do you
feel? What is your emotional state or mood? Make note any changes so they
register in your body and conscious mind. Next time you resist meditation,
remember the benefits to help you motivate and stay committed.
To use essential oils in meditation, you have several options: You can anoint yourself (try the third eye). You can create a mist (mix oils with water in a small spray bottle) and spray the fragrance in the air, or you can use a diffuser. I’m personally a fan of putting the oils on my body, particularly the third eye point. You may find a combination of methods work well. Try these 8 essential oils in your meditation practice.
1. Frankincense: A holy fragrance if there ever was one, it’s believed to help you increase your faith and connection with spirit.
2. Myrrh: One of the highest sesquiterpene contents in an essential oil, myrrh directly stimulates the hypothalamus, pituitary and amygdalin glands to help reduce stress and bring focus. It’s uplifting scent can assist in deep spiritual “opening” while bringing calm and tranquility.
3. Cedarwood: Focus inward a bit more clearly with the help of cedarwood. It can also help to illuminate your need for meditation and return you to your spiritual path when obstacles have made it difficult.
4. Sandalwood: This oil is very helpful in healing, particularly emotional/spiritual wounds. It opens the heart and helps to promote trust.
5. Vetiver: This oil is extremely grounding and can be especially beneficial if you have a tendency to wander and lose focus in meditation.
6. Neroli: The potent floral fragrance of neroli can help you to be more self-accepting, face your fears and accept the work you need to do for yourself. It’s incredibly sensual and transformative, and the fragrance can also inspire creativity, particularly as it pertains to a spiritual practice.
7. Rose: The fragrance of love—both the human and the Divine, this romantic and sensual oil opens the heart to receive love–particularly self-love—and a deeper connection to the spirit world.
8. Sage: Burning sage is a common ceremonial practice in many tribal cultures. It cleanses and purifies, removing negative energies. It is grounding and restores both balance and energy.