Unless you live under a rock, you’ve probably heard a thing or two about #meditation. I know, it’s a scary word.
Maybe you’re picturing a bald monk in a robe, sitting on a rock in the middle of the Himalayas. Maybe you’re stereotyping in your head some sort of hippy person having a transcendental moment. Fact, is, meditation is in no way only reserved for certain people, or certain believes. Meditation is, according to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, the act of “ engaging in contemplation or reflection ”.
In the recent years, a huge numbers of health specialists such as neurologists, doctors, psychiatrists and other physical and mental health researchers, dedicated (and still are!) their work to the study of meditation and its incredible effects on the human body. Many studies have shown that meditation can be beneficial for people struggling with a multitude of conditions such as :
Irritable Bowel syndrome
Post-traumatic stress disorders
Meditation has no way be proven to act as a treatment for any of these health issues, but might help some people dealing with them, or easing them. I know for a fact that this practice is even sometimes prescribed to help people experiencing the physical or mental effects of stress. I think, though, that beginning a meditation practice can be very intimidating and weird and boring and useless and… So, before delving into it, identify the WHY, of all that. Do your research, find some relatable stories (hint : there are tons!).
For me, the biggest WHY is that meditation helps me calm my mind and my very (VERY) active nervous system, and allows me to clear the space in my head to, then, be more relaxed, creative, energetic. In other words, it kinda stops the hamster from spinning endlessly in my brain and brings me back to the present moment. It is also really important that you get rid of unrealistic expectations or stereotype based ideas of what it should be or look like in order to avoid pointless frustrations and discouragements.
Meditation will not make you levitate.
Meditation does not have to be lasting hours.
Meditation is not thinking about nothing.
So, in order to ease your glide into meditation, let me suggest a simple yet quite effective mind exercise that will help your body, your mind and your soul to relax, find stillness, and therefore, find peace and reduce the stress level you are experiencing.
Find a comfortable seat in a comfortable place using comfortable props (cushions!) if you need too.
Lengthen your spine, relax your shoulders, close your eyes.
Place your hands on your knees, to induce a better grounding sensation.
Inhale deeply through the nose, inflating your belly and chest, open your mouth and sigh to exhale calmly, three times.
Come back to your regular breathing pattern.
Begin visiting your body from the inside. Scan every little part of your body. In your mind, check what’s up with your right foot, your left knee, your neck, and so on.
Direct all your attention to your body. Observe each part calmly, without inventing a story around it. Observe.
When you checked in with every part, slowly open your eyes.
You have meditated!
How are you feeling? What has this meditation evoke to you?