Powerful Meditation Tips
These meditation tips are a collection of suggestions to help assist in your easy adoption of a regular daily meditation practice. There are many different types of meditation and these ideas may be applied to all methods.
Whether you are just learning meditation or are a seasoned meditator ready to explore further, these meditation tips are useful.
- Create a relaxing atmosphere for your meditation practice.
- Listening to mellow music or spiritual/chanting beforehand helps to prepare your mind for peace
- Subdued lighting will be calming, you may appreciate candle light
- Have a comfy 'throw' or shawl handy if it feels cool
- Favorite spiritual objects or beautiful things from nature contribute to serenity
- Consider which crystals or precious stones may offer an appropriate balance or accent for your present energy, and have those nearby
- Although essential oils contribute a lovely relaxing aroma to the air, they do much more than that.
Pure essential oils, diluted in water and heated in a diffuser, act on the biochemistry of our body as we breathe in their scent. Depending on the oil you choose to use, the affect will vary.
These are a few commonly chosen oils for meditation:
- Frankincense is recorded to have been used throughout history to enhance communication with the creator
- Ylang Ylang rejuvenates feelings of self-love, confidence, joy and peace
- Bergamot is said to calm the emotions and help relieve stress, tension and anxiety
- Relaxed and regular breathing is perhaps the most powerful of all meditation tips. This is best accomplished by learning to breath from the diaphragm. The diaphragm is located at the base of the ribcage / top of the stomach. The heart rests on the diaphragm.
Our breath can be seen as a bridge between our voluntary nervous system (ex. we use to consciously pick our hand up) and involuntary or autonomic system (ex. which runs our heart). Breath is easily operated on either of these systems, hence we can consciously control our breathing or simply let it operate on it's own.
With rhythmic diaphragmatic breathing, our nervous system is actually induced into a calmer more relaxed emotional state and blood pressure is reduced.
This breathing technique entails keeping our chest and stomach relatively flat during an in-breath, and allowing the diaphragm to expand. A mental image I find helpful is that of the lower rib cage flaring out. On the out-breath, the diaphragm contracts while again the stomach and chest remain relatively stable. Practice a comfortably slow and smooth breathing pattern in this manner.
Similarly to the fact that you cannot be emotionally depressed and grateful at the same time, you cannot be frantic if your breathing is regular, slow and deep.
- Another one of the most important meditation tips is to make sure you meditate with a straight spine. This aids the uninterrupted flow of our body chemistry, fluids, electrical and nerve responses... energy of all descriptions. If you lay down to meditate, you might find it most comfortable to put a cushion under your knees.
- Establish a routine. Valuable health benefits of meditation are achieved from twice daily sessions of 10-20 minutes each. Choose the timetable that best suits you and the rest of your life, and stick to that everyday. Personally I like to meditate as soon as I wake up, and last thing in the evening. Meditate in the same relaxing environment that you created for yourself, for every session.
- Ensure you will not be interrupted. If there are other people in the house, arrange your responsibilities so that everyone knows you are occupied with something else very important, during your meditation time. Turn off or disengage telephones.
- When practicing self meditation, set a timer with a gentle signal to notify you when your session is complete. Knowing that you will receive a signal allows you to fully let go. It gives your mind one less thing to think about. When I haven't used a timer, my mind invariably shouts out at some point, 'are we done yet'?!
- Certain types of meditation promote specific hand positions. Hand positions are seen to be a factor in the way energy flows through the body and certain methods deem this more importantly than others.
Some techniques do not mention hand positions, ie. heart meditation. If that's the case, use these meditation tips to try a few different positions to find one that feels best to you:
- place both hands comfortably in your lap, palms up, with one hand cradling the other
- in the sitting position, rest each hand on the respective thigh, palms up and open
- in the sitting position, rest each hand on the respective thigh, palms up with the tips of thumb and first and second finger touching
- in the sitting position, rest each hand on the respective thigh, palms down
- if laying down: rest arms and hands by your side, palms facing up, or down
- arms by sides and resting hands palms down on tops of thighs
- arms by sides and resting hands on ribcage, or lower abdomen/top of hipbone
- Guided meditation can be great when learning to meditate, and also useful if you just want to expand your repertoire and try something different. There are many helpful and insightful guided meditation recordings available, and they vary greatly among the numerous types of meditation.
Here is an 8 1/2 minute sample that provides a few further meditation tips, and gives you the opportunity to experience one type of guided session:
Bridget Woods Kramer on the coast of England.
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