Meditation 101: Why & How to Add this Practice to Your Daily Life
BENEFITS OF MEDITATION
Research has documented a number of benefits to the nervous system in response to consistent meditation, including:
Reduced blood pressure
Improved blood circulation
Lower heart rate
Deeper feelings of relaxation
Decreased stress & anxiety
Enhanced mood & emotional well-being
Slower respiratory rate
Lower blood cortisol levels
Improved immune system functionin
Enhanced cognition, attention span, & focus
Increased positive thinking & optimism
After consistent meditation practice, many people find that they are less impulsive, reactive, and judgmental. They carry with them a stronger sense of calm, focus, and connection - with themselves and everything around them. Instead of getting stuck in their habitual, conditioned patterns, emotional wounds, and limiting beliefs and reacting, they instead begin observing them, reflecting - and letting them go. As your meditation practice develops, you may find it healing to go a step further and begin introducing positive affirmations at the end of your practice, as an intentional replacement of the limiting patterns and beliefs that you are releasing. “I Am” is one of the most powerful phrases you can utter; be mindful and intentional about what comes after it.
I Am Enough
I Am Blessed
I Am Strong
I Am Capable
I Am Healthy
I Am Flourishing
I Am Abundant
I Am Love
I Am Loved
I Am Worthy
I Am Happy
Walking in Nature
Focusing on a Candle
Adult Coloring Books or Drawing
Focusing on a Body Part
Third eye can be a very powerful focal point, connected to intuition and focus
Center of your chest, connected to heart/love
Base of your spine, this is a very grounding point
Close your eyes and “see” the light through them
The feel of your hands on your thighs
Grounding points - any body part that is touching the ground
Moving Meditation, i.e. Yoga, Tai Chi, Qi Gong
Imagine light traveling up your body, one part at a time (i.e. toes, feet, ankles, legs, fingers, hands, etc.)
Imagine light filling the center of your chest
Imagine light spreading from your body to the space around you
Stand on one leg
Get on your hands and knees then extend one leg back, then extend the opposite arm forward
Observe Your Surroundings
Notice the way light filters into the room
Look at the empty space between tree branches, your fingers, buildings, etc.
Watch the way nature moves - leaves on trees, blades of grass, birds, etc.
Listen to Music with Headphones On
Classical and/or violin music can be very good for bringing about a sense of calm focus
Try listening to Binaural beats
Try Chanting a Mantra
“I am Loving Awareness”
The key to meditation is simply to be in the present moment, without judgment. Thoughts and sensations will come; observe them, release them, and gently guide your attention back to the meditation focal point you have chosen.
Find what resonates with you, what pulls you out of your head and into the present moment, and devote 10-15 minutes a day to your practice. Wake up early and start your day with intention and calm; add a second session in the afternoon to carry you through the potential stress of your day — and notice how much more things begin to flow with ease as you do.
You can even try practicing your meditation techniques during your next Maitland acupuncture session! Mindful breathing, light visualization meditation, or focusing on a body party can amplify your feelings of calm and relaxation during acupuncture.
What are some of your favorite types of meditation? What do you find most difficulty about meditating? What benefits have you noticed from consistent meditation?
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