What is meditation actually? I feel like it is a taboo, that only people who practice yoga and clean their chakras are allowed to do it. Meditation, from my prior
understanding, was sitting there cross-legged,
humming, and emptying your mind. Impossible! Try
right now if you can and sit cross-legged on the floor -
no easy feat (for some anyhow, I imagine, or else I
am doing something very wrong!) This is what I am
trying to do: Look at where her feet are, I can’t do that! I often
wonder if it is possible to meditate without having to
go all Dalai Llama on it. And sure, of course, you can.
Meditation is about clearing your mind of the past and the future, and maybe even the present if it is causing you worries. Ditch those anxieties! As long as you are in a comfortable position, sitting or lying, you should be able to meditate. Try not to fall asleep though! In fact, it would be better to not lie down on the bed, just sitting comfortably will suffice!
If you have had a tiring day and do fall asleep, firstly, I hope you enjoyed it - never should you reject what your body needs (see Ayurveda blog); and secondly, try again another day - don’t let this stress you out. Meditation is for peaceful time, there is no point being stressed trying to find peace. This is not a promising state of mind.
Go to a quiet place. If this is not possible, pop in some headphones and listen to calming music. The ocean, the forest, even the bustle of people on the street may be calming for some. It is necessary to not be distracted by any of our five senses. For example, don’t try to meditate in the kitchen, or on the toilet (the bath can be good! But empty, in case you slip a bit too far within!). If your home is too hectic, find a quiet place out of doors, or even find an empty room in the office, why not!
Breathe. Nice deep breaths. Inhale, exhale. Concentrate on your breathing foremost. This will lull you into your calming state but remain aware of your being also. Try not to lose your position, and try not to lose your rhythm. What we want to achieve here is a deep calmness and peace of mind. This in itself will help alter our perception when dealing with the woes of life.
Rediscover your true self. It is so easy to lose oneself when pressured by society - have the perfect job, keeping it; kids in good schools and colleges; the excellent car, the perfect house, the dog that doesn’t bark through the whole night. The whole kit and caboodle. Finding yourself is putting yourself in the spotlight for once, cleaning out those dark dusty corners of your consciousness. Release the negativity and accept the positivity.
Meditate, rinse & repeat. Doing it once is great, but do it again. Make it your goal to do this every evening. For how long? Well, however long it will take! This will undoubtedly differ from person to person. I am a pretty easy going person so now I meditate for 10 minutes in the evening. Some people may need an hour in the beginning, but it will shorten as time goes on and your peace of mind plunges into your everyday being.
I say give it a go! We make time for work, TV, and shopping (although shopping IS therapeutic…) Let’s give time for ourselves. Imagine the bewilderment on your colleagues' faces when you bounce into work the next day with an attitude seemingly “I don’t care”, when in actual fact, you are at your highest cognitive functioning! Do it, and I truly and sincerely hope that you benefit wholly from it.