If you’re looking to bring some goodness into your life for 2017 then meditation may be for you. I’ve been on and off with the practice for years, but since last January I’ve been pretty committed… as in 10 – 15 minutes most days.
Since several people have asked me for tips on how to get started, I’ve decided to create some simple guidelines based on my own experience. These are the things that helped me make meditation more regular in my life.
How To Meditate
1. Go to a class, or get an app with a guided program you like.
These days I sit with a timer, but it wasn’t always like this. I spent a lot of time listening to the pros give instruction on how to meditate. If attending class isn’t do-able, there are so many good guided programs to choose from. I’ve been recommending this, this and this as solid beginner choices.
2. Find a nice area in your home, and make it your meditation section.
For years, I sat on my bed to meditate. This is fine, but I definitely recommend creating your own space dedicated to meditation, if you can. It adds purpose to your practice. And even though apartment living is tight, I have my cushion set up so I can go to it whenever I’m ready. I’ve also placed some photos in that area — sweet images to add inspiration. Some people use candles, or other altar-ish items to help get into the zone. Try to find things that are calming and centering.
3. Pick a time, and stick to it.
I’m a morning bird. If I don’t get my meditation in before the kids are awake, forget it…it’s not happening. So I wake up early to do it. If I wake up with not enough time, I’ll shorten my session to 5 minutes. I’ve found that a short meditation is better than no meditation. A lot of people prefer the night, before bed to meditate. Simply choose what time works for you, and do it. Eventually it becomes like brushing your teeth. You’ll feel strange without it.
4. Talk about it to others.
Similar to a new workout program, if you talk about it with others not only will you inspire them to try, but you’re bringing your practice into the world. Share how it’s going or which guided programs you are loving. Spread the word of meditation!
The most important thing is to keep it up. I’ve heard people say “I don’t know how to meditate.” Or “I can’t do it.” It’s true that it’s not easy; the mind is a busy bee, constantly looking for stimulation. Some days you’ll feel good, and the mind may quiet. Other days, maybe not. Just know that it is a practice, and when you keep it up, progress will come.
How do you meditate?