Missed some of the past newsletters? No problem! Check out our stash of archived content!
Some Simple "Dos and Don'ts" for Getting Started
Stressed out? Anxious? Meditation can help you relax and focus, improving your overall state of mind and helping you deal with the daily grind. This simple weekly program by POV and meditation instructor Salil Wilson will help you learn how to get started and give you some easy ways to incorporate meditation into your everyday life. Each week we will tackle a different topic, so what's more fitting for our first week than to lay out some basic tips and give you a 10 minute meditation exercise that's easy to complete each day.
1. When — The best time to meditate is first thing in the morning, just after you get up. Make sure you set your alarm to get you up 15 minutes earlier than usual. Another excellent time to practice meditation is right before bed. You will find it easier to go to sleep and you will have deeper more fulfilling rest.
2. Duration — To start with 10 minutes is more than enough.
3. Where — Find a spot in your living space that you can set aside for meditation. Make it really nice with inspiring photos of nature or a spiritual figure you identify with, find some fresh flowers and perhaps burn some incense or essential oils. It is best if this space is used only for meditation – that way it will serve as an outer reminder for your new found inner discipline.
4. Music — The right kind of music can be really helpful in creating an atmosphere conducive to meditation. Try some different types and artists to find what you like. My favorite is “Flute Music for Meditation” by Sri Chinmoy.
5. Posture — Make sure you are sitting in such a way that ensure your spine is erect and comfortable. Don’t try to meditate lying down – you’ll just fall asleep.
6. Don’t get discouraged — Meditation is very simple but is not always easy. Learning how to quiet your mind is a life long process so don’t expect results overnight. Regular, punctual and sincere practice will definitely produce profound benefits to you life.
The easiest and most effective method to begin meditation is to focus you attention on your breath. Try this exercise below for 10 minutes.
1. Make your breath very slow, deep and relaxed. Your breathing is intrinsically connected to your thoughts and your emotions so by calming your breath you inherently calm your thoughts and emotions.
2. Start by consciously relaxing your entire body. Using the rhythm of your breath to release the tension around your eyes and face, soften the muscles in neck and shoulders, relax your chest and back. Feel your spine lengthening. Using your breath to relax and soften the remaining muscle groups.
3. Imagine you are breathing in peace and breathing out any worries, anxieties and tensions you may have accumulated during the day.
4. Spend the last 3 minutes trying to become aware of your heart beating while still breathing in peace.
About the Author
Salil Wilson has been practicing meditation for 27 years under the guidance of Sri Chinmoy. Salil also serves as the Executive Director of the World Harmony Run, an global Torch-Relay - promoting the ideals of peace and international understanding.