Updated: Apr 2, 2021
What is meditation?
Meditation is a form of using techniques such as focusing the mind on your breath, thought, an object in front of you, or an activity to train your mind to stillness and achieve a mentally clear, emotionally calm and stable state of being. Meditation can reduce stress and replace it with inner peace. It allows us to access a deep dimension that is beyond what the eyes can see and beyond what the senses report. You will be aware of when the mind drifts and bring it back to the focal point, be it your breath or an object.
In recent times there have been many scientific studies to show the benefits of meditation and mindfulness. Our brains stop processing information as actively as it normally would. We have around 50,000 thoughts per day. Meditation can help reduce those relentless thoughts and really quiet the busy mind so you can find clarity and a sense of ease and calm in your mind.
Meditation increases our ability to focus better. The more we meditate the less we feel anxious. We are able to be still and take that anxiety and become aware of it rather than having anxiety consume us.
The stillness we explore when we meditate triggers our creative being and coming up with new ideas. We have better memory when we meditate. We clear out the thoughts that do not serve us and it leaves space for a better memory.
However long you choose to meditate is down to the lifestyle and the type of person you are. You can start for 10 minutes a day and build up slowly. You can use guided meditation, there are lots on YouTube. You should start with the right intention and then build up. Keep your practice consistent and this will enable you to go deeper into your practice.
If you engage and immerse yourself into your meditation, you can go deeper faster. Light a candle or some incense and this will transform the whole experience into something that is very pleasant.
Using all your senses in your meditation will increase the sensations in your practice. Train your mind to engage with the senses and this deepen your practice.
You can keep your eyes open or shut. When you keep them open you can focus on the stars or clouds, but most prefer to keep them shut. This allows for little distractions. You can listen to a soft piece of meditation music, or some binaural sound which will tap into your subconscious. You can use mantras. You can use mala beads while practicing your mantra meditation.
Without a doubt, you need to practice your meditation with intention. The intention and the feeling/emotion behind the meditation is the important bit. Let yourself surrender into the meditation with deep intention and you will feel rejuvenated and fulfilled afterward.
What are the benefits?
There has been a lot of scientific research to the many benefits of meditation. It leads to stress/anxiety reduction and increases in focus and clarity, increasing your self awareness, reducing negative emotions and an increase in creativity, patience and tolerance.
Meditation allows you to see the world with your heart rather than your eyes and that can be a beautiful thing at the worst of times. You will feel every passing moment with all of your senses. It will allow you to connect with life with deeper purpose and meaning.
If you don’t have a meditation practice already, start today. Even if it is for a few minutes so you can train your mind to be calm and get some clarity within yourself. The most important this is to be consistent and prioritise the time to go into stillness.
'Quiet the mind and the soul will speak' - Ma Jaya Sati Bhagavati.