By: Quiana LaRae
How often have you considered developing a self-care and/or wellness routine that involved meditation?
Every ounce of you has every intention to sit for an hour a day to meditate, and very quickly that hour turns into 45 minutes, then 30 minutes, then 20, 15, 10, 5 and finally non-existent. If you are like most human beings in the western world you are deeply consumed by calendars, social media, competing priorities, and trying to get some sleep in between it all. You may even have found yourself falling asleep as you try to quiet and focus your mind before you start your day, or as you wind down from the day. Then beat yourself up for not being able to get it down.
You should sit in meditation for twenty minutes a day, unless you are too busy — then you should sit for an hour. ~Author Unknown
Here’s the thing about meditation, it’s not a one size fits all thing. Meditation is a practice that is personal to you and it is a practice you develop over time. According to Headspace, there are several different types of meditations. Some common types are emptying, reflective and focused meditation. Each of these meditations can either be self-directed or guided – being led by another person either in person or through a recording.
When practicing emptying, you direct your attention on quieting and emptying your mind. Some people report seeing a blank white space or a black white space. The idea is to allow the images, noises, thoughts and ideas dissolve by directing your attention to being completely emptied.
Another common meditation is reflective meditation. It is common for people to practice reflective meditation through writing, journaling, drawing, or coloring. To begin the practice of reflective meditation, think of a topic you want to focus on or a question to answer and allow your thoughts and feelings to flow on to the page.
A third, but not final, popular meditation is focused meditation. Meditation, in general, is focusing the mind or redirecting our attention. It is common for people who are new to meditation to begin their meditation practice by finding something to focus on to help redirect their mind and attention. Some people choose to light a candle and focus their attention on the flame, while others do things like clean or run or practice yoga.
A great candle to use for this type of meditation is the Meditate Candle by Blue Sage Eco Boutique. It is made with natural soy wax and an essential oil blend of rosemary, lavender, and sage – a blend that helps to ease, relax, and focus the mind. The idea of focused meditation is to take your mind off the thing that has you stuck, or swirling, or causing stress or anxiety.
So, now that you have a few options to choose from, you can select a meditation that works for you. Also, I do recommend setting a timer to begin developing your meditation practice; however, I don’t think it’s necessary to put pressure on yourself to begin meditation for an hour (unless that’s where you’re led). I would start with 3 minutes and work your way up.
Here’s a bonus for you. Honestly, I love minute meditations. I do them everywhere, standing in line, driving, restroom breaks. It’s literally me focusing my attention on my breath as I move about in the world. For one minute, I take deep breaths in through my nose and out of my mouth no matter where I am. It’s super subtle and I use it throughout the day.
When I discovered the power of literally “taking a minute” it changed everything for me. Focusing on our breath is a quick and simple way for us to get into our bodies and remind ourselves that we are human and sacred beings all at the same time. It helps us to focus and bring awareness to what is happening around us and in us, and it only takes a minute.
Bringing meditation into your self-care and wellness practice does not have to be stressful or a daunting task that you must pass. Allow it to enter your life with ease and let it be authentic to you.
Do you have a meditation practice? How long do you meditate? Tell us in the comments below.