Meditation Techniques For Beginners: The First Steps
The Cambridge dictionary defines meditation as the act of giving your attention to only one thing, either as a religious activity or as a way of becoming calm and relaxed. Having taught neurophysiological meditation for over twenty-five years, I admit I have a very practical wellness-based approach to meditation. If it helps you relax and feel better, you’re meditating… and no, I’m not talking about using external helpers!
In all seriousness, meditation:
- doesn’t need to be done just sitting.
- doesn’t need to be performed for hours on end.
- doesn’t need to be hard.
Meditation is about focusing positively on the here and now, rather than dwelling on past failures or future worries, and can be done anytime, anywhere… in just seconds or minutes. It can even be fun! Meditation can also be about expanding your consciousness and your relationship with the Universe.
And you need to start somewhere. You’re not ready to graduate from college as soon as you start kindergarten. If you’re ready to learn 15 fast easy, proven meditation techniques for beginners and experienced practitioners to calm your monkey mind chatter and develop the habit of lifelong meditation, read on.
Inch By Inch, Everything’s A Crinch
A word of caution… Your new intention will be sabotaged by your unconscious mind because it fears change.
To fly under your unconscious mind’s radar and minimize the possibility of being derailed from your meditation aspirations, Rod Hairston recommends the following guides:
Make it as easy and convenient as possible to meditate.
Since that’s the whole point of this article, we’ve got you covered on this one!
Make it as enjoyable as possible.
You are more likely to continue an activity you find enjoyable. Choose meditation activities and techniques that feel good to you, rather than swimming upstream in the hopes you’ll come to like it.
For quiet meditations, choose a place that is peaceful and soothing… your safe place where you won’t be disturbed.
Buddy up with someone to hold you accountable. The free meditation app Insight Timer allows you to connect with friends so that you can see each other’s activities. There are also over 7000 groups on Insight Timer to allow you to connect with like-minded people.
Start with baby steps to the point of feeling like you’re doing almost nothing.
This is the most important of all! If you start out by meditating even 15 or 30 minutes, the alarms are going to clang in your unconscious mind. The higher the alert triggered, the greater the potential self-sabotage — setting yourself up for failure. Before you know it, you’ll have likely fallen off the meditation wagon.
This is why I have included exercises which take less than a minute to do. And all of the following exercises take less than 5 minutes so that your alarm bells stay as quiet as possible. Choose one exercise each day and do only that one, even if you have the time and inclination to do more. When you’ve worked through these exercises, Insight Timer allows you to choose meditations based on time. Choose ones from the 5 minutes section for two weeks, then 10 minutes and so on. Before you know it, the habit of meditating will be ingrained in you.
Once you’re well on the way, you can then start expanding the duration of your meditation practice more and more without resistance from your unconscious mind.
An added benefit is that you will soon be feeling better about yourself — physically, emotionally and mentally — so that you’ll be ready to step up to the next level of meditation and expand your consciousness if you so choose.