Have you ever tried meditation? If not, you’ve come to the right place. It’s become far more mainstream than it once was over the past few years as the benefits have been widely publicised.
Meditation isn’t something you have to put a lot of effort into learning, it’s about finding a practice that suits you.
To get you started, here’s a few tips.
Build it into your daily routine
On average it takes around 66 days for a new behaviour to become a habit. Like exercise, it’s important to build meditation into your daily routine if you’re going to stick to it and really feel the benefit. Whether that’s in the morning before breakfast or at night before bed, find a time that suits you – even if it’s just 5-10 minutes.
Create a set meditation space
Having a designated area for meditation will help you to focus and relate that space to calming the mind. This could be on your bed with the door closed to limit distractions, in a spare room or during the summer months out in the garden – wherever you feel calm. Just be sure to go there and get settled before you start, don’t simply sit at the kitchen table to meditate whilst dinner is cooking as you won’t feel the benefit.
There are plenty of things you can invest in to really make your meditation an immersive, relaxed experience. Incense sticks are great for calming the mind as well as Himalayan Salt Lamps. Meditation pillows are also great and you can find a cabinet like this to store everything.
This is essential to making sure your time meditating is worthwhile. The last thing you want is to be fidgeting with cushions or getting a numb leg half way through. Take a few minutes before getting started to really get comfortable as this is one less thing for your mind to think about.
Set your expectations
Whilst meditation can help to destress and calm the mind, it’s not a quick fix. Those that expect an immediate impact to their daily lives are going to be disappointed. It’s important to get used to your meditation practice and put time into exploring how your mind works. When you’re told to simply sit and do nothing, your mind will naturally wander until you get to grips with switching off.
Clear your mind
Before starting your meditation, take some time to clear your mind. Focusing on what you’re going to cook in half an hour or the project you need to have on your manager’s desk in the morning will only hinder your practice. Take a few minutes to sit and be still, taking your mind away allowing you to focus.
Focus on your breathing
This is key to really switching off and taking your mind away from those wandering thoughts. Focus on inhaling and exhaling, how your chest rises and falls and how you feel as the air flows in and out. When thoughts enter your mind, acknowledge them and consciously return back to focusing on your breath.
Get help with an app
If you struggle to meditate alone, there are plenty of guided apps available. Headspace and Calm have free features and are ideal for introducing you to meditation. Having a voice talk through the motions of meditating helps some people to stay focused and prevent thoughts taking over.
Don’t be hard on yourself
If you’ve had a particularly busy or stressful day, you may find it difficult to switch off and relax into your meditation. Whilst this is going to be frustrating, it’s important to try and stick to at least 10 minutes of meditation as these are often the days when you’ll benefit from it the most!
We hope this helps to get you started and begin to feel the calming effects of meditation on your daily life. If you’re looking for storage to keep your meditation space organised, you can find our sideboards and cabinets here.