Meditation: How to Get Started

Happy Wednesday friends! How’s your week going? I had a pretty stressful Monday followed by a pretty great Tuesday. Hoping it’s a sign of a great rest of the week to come.

Before we jump into today’s post, I wanted to congratulate my Prince of Peace giveaway winner, Erinn!

Congrats girl! I have emailed you to get your mailing info.

At the beginning of the year (I can’t believe we are already in the fourth month of the year!) I did a 40-day program that focused on developing an at-home yoga and meditation practice.  You can find my intro, midpoint and recap posts of that program herehere, and here.  Meditating had always been a struggle for me.  I do notice a difference in how I deal with stress when I am meditating though. In general, I feel like it allows me to be a more understanding and go with the flow person.  So I feel like establishing a practice is worthwhile for me.  I meditated every day during my 40-day challenge.  While I have not stuck to meditating every single day since, I have still been meditating multiple time a week and feel like it is a helpful and calming activity for me.

(One of the best meditation spots I have ever gotten to enjoy, San Diego last summer).

Today, I wanted to share some tips and tricks that have helped me in my meditation journey.  This is still definitely a journey for me as well, so I would love to hear any tips that have worked for you that I might be able to incorporate into my practice.

  1. Add meditation to your schedule or to-do list.  Now, I know this may sound silly, but I know I am not the only one who is more likely to do something if it’s on my to-do list.  I am a total Type A personality, and I love crossing things off my list, so just having a meditation session on my calendar increases the likelihood of it happening ten fold.
  2. Know where you are going to meditate and make sure this space meets your needs.  At home, I have a corner of our bedroom that I have made into a little meditation area.  It is cool and quiet.  I like to lean against the wall and if I am aiming for a longer meditation, will sometimes light incense or put some essential oils in the diffuser to set the mood.  I find meditating at home to be easiest, but you could also take a meditation lunch break, or meditate outdoors.  Really anywhere you feel safe to close your eyes and allow your mind to wander away from whats going on around you.
  3. Take a comfortable position.  I used to think you had to be cross-legged, with a straight back, hands resting on your knees and palms up when you meditated.  This was just an image I had of how meditation is supposed to look.  However, if this is not comfortable for you, it’s not going to work well.  I know it doesn’t do much for me if I am thinking about my tight hips the whole time.  Sitting with your legs extended, resting against a wall, or in a chair may be a lot more comfortable and allow you to open up your mind, rather than focusing on how your body feels.
  4. Try a guided meditation. I find that especially if I am stressed and have a lot on my mind, it’s hard for me to get into my meditation groove. Sometimes a guided meditation can really help. I keep the Yoga Studio app on my phone, which has some nice guided meditations. You can also find lots of apps and YouTube guided meditations.
  5. Try a mantra. If guided isn’t your thing, try a mantra to start calming your mind and easing you into your practice. I personally like “I am” mantras, which a yoga instructor introduced me to. Out loud or just in your head, say “I am…followed by whatever pops into your head (motivated, strong, peaceful, etc). I find that after a few rounds I am feeling much more grounded and able to sink into my practice.
  6. Don’t worry about perfection. When random thoughts or worries pop up during my meditation I try (emphasis on try) to acknowledge them and let them go. I don’t really know that it’s possible to clear all thoughts completely, but I think the exercise can still be so soothing and beneficial.

Question:  Do you meditate?  If so, how do you get settled into your practice?

Hope you have a great day!

Advertisements

46 thoughts on “Meditation: How to Get Started

  1. this is not something I’ve ever done on a regular basis, but between workouts and in my teen years on stage I’ve done some of these relaxation techniques and know that just shutting down your brain and tuning out the world is so helpful in moving on in life. Glad you’ve found something to help you, being able to tune out stress as a parent is so helpful in those I am going to scream moments of life

    1. Thanks, I definitely notice a big difference in how I cope with stress if I am meditating regularly.

    1. I have totally fallen asleep in the Savasana portion of yoga class, sometimes that’s just what you need lol!

  2. I have heard so many amazing things about meditation but was never quite sure on how to get into it. These are great tips and totally doable without a huge schedule change which I love. Thanks for sharing Emily!

    1. The time is always a struggle, I typically stick to short meditations, 5-10 minutes, 1-2 times a day. I find I can handle that with my schedule and it still makes a difference.

  3. Thank you for these tips. It’s helpful to me to know that others also struggle with all those “monkey brain” thoughts. I have to keep on trying! Enjoy the rest of your week!

  4. I love this I do try to meditate but often get interrupted by my kids lol! But I do practice yoga a lot and try to meditate as often as I can. I love your post thank you so much

    1. Thanks Sara! It does seem that the kiddos always need something just as you are trying to take a few minutes lol. Hope you have a great day!

  5. I recently started trying to develop a morning routine and with that incorporating yoga or meditation into my daily life. I found an app that has a great guide and I think it is really making a difference. It is great to start my day already in a great place!

  6. Thanks for sharing. That’s great that it’s working well for you, and I like that you have a set place at home to go. I had a work meeting recently and someone came in to give a talk. During our “break”, she actually turned on a guided meditation from Youtube and it was really relaxing, so I think that would be the way for me!

    -Lauren
    http://www.shootingstarsmag.net

  7. Making a to-do list is a great way to make sure I do something! I always make one at work and it’s so effective! Great job with the meditation!

  8. Confession: I meditate in the shower. Strange but true. That gets me to actually do it. I just sit for a few minutes and breathe. Gets me ready!

  9. I’m up to a 251 day streak on Headspace – at least 1 minute of meditation a day, but usually 10 mins. I recently adopted a cat though, so my routine was disrupted for a bit and I had to do smaller meditations. Hoping to get back into the 10 minute ones regularly again!

  10. I added meditation to my routine not too long ago. I like it to be the last thing I do before I go to sleep. So, my pup and I cuddle up and I find a guided meditation to listen to. I used to have an app for them. But you are right, there are a lot available on YouTube! I just recently found a few that I enjoy.

  11. It’s really difficult for me to be still enough to meditate–but when I do, it’s an out of body experience. Great tips!

    1. It is a challenge, I find that mantras really help me, and just keeping in mind that it’s ok to have a thought pop up, just try to acknowledge it and let it go.

  12. These are all great tips. I have been hoping to start meditating for a while now but never got around to do it. I am also like you on crossing out lists, so I am going to put it on my to do lists and use your tips to start out. Thanks for this.

Leave a Reply