The primary goal of mindful meditation is to calm your mind and clear away all the distractions and thoughts.
While practicing mindful meditation you may want complete quiet. Others, though, may like the challenge of tuning out a certain amount of background noise. And yet some others may prefer to listen to gentle music in the background.
Listed below are 3 incredibly easy ways to add a mindful meditation practice to your life:
1) Seated Meditation
The easiest way to add a mindful meditation practice to our lives is to simply set aside anywhere from 5-15 minutes in your daily routine. Almost all of us, no matter how busy our lives, can spare an extra 5 minutes. Wake up 5 minutes earlier to start your day, so that you ensure you have plenty of time to practice.
Find a place with limited distractions and sit cross-legged. The important thing is to try and eliminate all the distracting thoughts and focus your mind on one thing.
Focus on your breath, breathing in slowly through the nose and out through the mouth. Also, focus on maintaining a strong and upright posture with the crown of your head pointing to the sky.
Many meditators like to focus on the pineal gland, or what’s known as our third eye.
The pineal gland is located inside the brain, but the gateway to it, the third eye, is considered by many to be located on the forehead in between our eyebrows. The pineal gland is where melatonin in our body is produced; thus focusing on it can help improve sleep regulation.
No matter what helps you quiet your mind, stay focused on that one thing.
When you find your thoughts drifting towards what to take the kids for dinner or last’s night’s spat with your spouse, simple breathe out and come back to your focus.
Even the most seasoned meditators occasionally find their thoughts drifting. So, be kind to yourself and clear your mind as often as is necessary. Don’t worry that you aren’t doing it perfectly.
2) Practice Tai Chi
Think of Tai Chi as a form of moving meditation.
While it is a traditional Chinese martial art, it is a solo practice that does not (typically) involve contact or partner work. It is also a very slow and gentle practice that allows the practitioner to focus on breath and healthy movement.
Of course, you can find a local Tai Chi class, but there are also plenty of YouTube videos that allow you to practice at home.
Unless you’re an expert, start with what’s called the Yang-style short form which is features 24 different movements rather than the traditional 108 long forms.
3) Practice Yoga
Yoga, too, is a centuries-old practice.
It also comes in many styles, some more rigorous than others. What they all tend to have in common, though, is a calming and focusing of the mind through breath and healthy movement.
Like Tai Chi, you can certainly find a yoga studio near your home or work, but you can also find a multitude of videos that will enable you to practice at home.
The more rigorous among you may want to look into Bikram or Hot Yoga classes, which can be a very full-bodied workout. For a more gentle approach, you may prefer Hatha or a restorative “yin” style yoga.
But like any mindful meditation practice, you will naturally see benefits physically, but also emotionally and spiritually.
You’re Never Too Busy to Meditate
“Be mindful even if your mind is full.” – James De La Vega
We all feel the pinch in our busy weeks of trying to find the time to add one more thing.
It’s clear from what we’ve learned that the benefits of adding a mindful meditation practice into our lives can be an amazingly transformational experience!
But how do we fit it into our busy and ever-increasing schedules?
Like anything else, it has to be simple and it has to be something that doesn’t feel like we’re sacrificing.
We also need to be willing to fake it until we make it. In other words, like any new practice, it may feel unnatural at first and it can take anywhere from 21-28 days (or longer) to form a new habit.