Mindfulness & Meditation

February 20, 2019

Mindfulness & Meditation

So how do you start a meditation practice? If you’re like most people, you know deep down that a mindfulness practice would be a good thing to try, but have no idea where to begin. I cannot tell you how many times I’ve heard, “I cannot meditate”, “I'm not able to sit still like that,” “I’m just not wired that way.” For most of us, meditation isn’t a practice you jump into, there are steps to take to prep your mind to sit quietly.

Our mind is a funny thing. Our senses--sight, sound, touch, smell, taste--are constantly taking in and processing information. The start of a meditation practice is learning to bring a singular focus on the senses and awareness to them. For example, a technique I like to use involves sound. When you sit quietly, just pay attention to the sound of your breath. Then start to notice the sounds of your immediate proximity, extend your awareness further and further to hear the sounds as far away as you’re able. Then, reverse that awareness back to your breath, pulling in to just the sound of the air entering and leaving the nose. When we are really quiet, we can even hear the sound of our own beating heart which is pretty cool!

My teacher, Dharma Richards, has created a lovely podcast with different guided meditations to help with this practice. Check out one of my favorites, a simple exercise to help you unwind. This can be done at home, at work or whenever or wherever you need a moment to de-stress. The benefits of practicing mindfulness are numerous, but most importantly, you’ll just feel better and is 5 minutes well spent.

So while you’re steeping your morning tea and setting your intention for the day, plug into a guided meditation. Here’s a link to an article that shares some meditation apps, or subscribe to Dharma’s podcast. If apps or podcasts aren’t your thing, take a walk outside and listen to the sound of your footsteps. This too is the start of a mindfulness practice. Creating a moment of quiet can come in any form based on your preferences. You’ve got this. Let’s be intentional together.


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