With the benefits of meditation making headlines, you may be considering your own practice. But with so many commitments packed into an already full schedule, how will you fit it in? I get it!
Though a session of meditation may take just 5 minutes, sometimes it can feel completely impossible to squeeze even that in.
Here’s when I have the most success in sitting down to meditate.
First Thing AM
I’ve made it pretty clear here that I’m a rise and shine kind of girl…I love the morning! And while waking up to write has been my practice for sometime now, I’ve also incorporated a little meditation into that situation. Usually I’ll write for a bit then meditate. Then write some more to process my insights. Of course, I don’t do this every day. Sometimes in the middle of my meditation, I’ll hear M walking to the bathroom which signals my time is up. But early mornings are a great time to sit– the mind is still a little sleepy, and hasn’t yet encountered a days worth of dramas that fill the space.
The entire physical portion of yoga (or asana) is to set yourself up to meditate. When I practiced Ashtanga regularly it was built into the sequence, but now — not every teacher includes it in their class. The morning class I’ve been attending lately does, and it’s been fantastic. So by attending this class, I know I’ll get my meditation in — I don’t have to worry about finding time in my day…it’s already done. See if you can find a teacher who includes some time to sit at the end of their class — then you’ll reap the benefits without having to schedule it in.
For the same reason that yoga and meditation tag team so well, any type of cardio or workout complements a sitting practice. When you move your body to clear your mind, it creates the perfect conditions for stillness. I remember speaking to a seasoned meditator, and telling him I need to move my body before meditation…though he didn’t need that preamble of movement to meditate, he agreed that physicality before sitting is a good way to begin the practice.
At Night – In Bed
OK, so this is a bit less traditional–I actually lie down in bed with my headphones, and my meditation app. Yes, it’s recommended that you sit for meditation, with your spine straight to enhance an alertness within the body. And Yes, I’ve fallen asleep when meditating in bed. (Such a nice way to drift off!) It’s just a no pressure way to fit it in. And sometimes the guide’s instructions seep into my brain, so I have them stored for later use.
Whenever You Can
It’s nice to take 10 or 20 minutes to meditate, but that’s just not the reality for so many of us. Which is why it’s ok to sneak in bits whenever you can. Waiting in the car for the street cleaning to pass, or while someone else hops out for bread and milk ? Close your eyes and count your breath. Got a few minutes before the kids get home, and you have to start making dinner? Go into your room, close the door, sit silently and tune your awareness inward. Whenever you have the time when you might normally look at your phone or check email, see if you can use it to watch your breath instead. You may end up feeling better than before, and want to bring more of that into your day.
When do you meditate?
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Hello Elysha ? I’ve spent the better part of he past few months consciously incorporating meditation into my day. Not unexpectedly, my methods are very similar to others. A morning meditation, sitting up in bed, a yoga class with meditation and pranayama – so good. And then taking opportunities during the day to dip back into awareness. Lovely to read your thoughts again xo
It’s so good that you keep it going through your day. Pranayama is one of those things that while I’m doing it I don’t like it much, but afterwards…it becomes worth that effort. Thank you, Sara. So nice to see you again!
Afternoon is a good time for me.
Isn’t it interesting how it’s different for everyone….I’m pretty much useless at night!