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This post will explain to you how to make meditation work for you. It is for you, if you are new to meditation or if you can say yes to the following:
Have you tried getting into meditation before but you didn’t stick with it? It may have been because you didn’t enjoy the process. Maybe your teacher was fixated on making sure you were doing it right. Or maybe you found it was too hard to control your thoughts.
Whatever the reason, you gave up. But that doesn’t mean you can’t pick up meditation again. Instead of approaching it as another item on your to-do list, look at it as a form of self-care. The trick is to make meditation work for you and not against you. Here are some tips to get you started meditating again.
Experiment with Different Times of Day
Some people swear by morning meditation. They get up earlier than anyone else in their household and spend twenty or thirty minutes meditating. It’s what works for them.
But that doesn’t mean you have to meditate in the morning. You might find that you prefer to meditate in the early afternoon when you can enjoy the sunshine that comes through your window. Or maybe you find meditating before bed a simple and relaxing way to drop off to sleep.
It doesn’t matter what time of day that you meditate. There is no right or wrong time. There’s only the present and how you choose to enjoy it.
I personally meditate when going to bed, often even in bed. Before starting to meditate at night, I used to struggle to fall asleep. Sometimes it was because of thinking too much and sometimes, well, no idea. After at least 30 minutes of turning and tossing, I finally fell asleep. Then I started a combination of meditation and gratitude routine when going to bed and I now sleep like a baby. 🙂
I still like to meditate during the day sometimes when the day gets hectical. So, just try yourself what time suits you most.
Give Yourself Something Visual
Some people complain that when they try to meditate, they can’t concentrate. There are still dozens of thoughts they can’t seem to release and they feel restless, too. If that describes you, don’t worry.
You may need to have something visual to look at during your meditation sessions. You might try focusing your attention on a flickering candle or meditating while you stare at your vision board. If you can’t burn a candle physically, go to a site like YouTube and search for burning candle for meditation. Several videos will appear that you can choose from.
I am sure you have heard of people using a rosary for prayer? It helps them focus on the prayer and as well for meditation. You could try using one, or as a non-christian, you can use mala beads instead. If you wonder if using a rosary in meditation is okay, then I recommend you reading Rosary in Meditation by LoyolaPress. In case you would like to try out a mala, you should read the Mala beads ultimate guide by MindBodyBeautifulSoul.
For me it worked to just accept the thoughts, let them come and go. The only trick here is to not actively engage with those thoughts and try to continue thinking.
Sometimes I do a breathing exercise at the beginning where every time I breathe in I think about breathing calmness in. And every time I breathe out I let my thoughts flow out with this breath.
Pick a Safe Space
When it comes to meditating, it’s important to choose to do so in a spot where you feel safe to make meditation work. If you have an emotionally volatile spouse who explodes into a rage in the kitchen (like I do sometimes, I must admit. But the outbreaks are short and I still love cooking.), you may have trouble meditating in that room of your house.
Some people dealing with trauma find it’s helpful to meditate in small, closed spaces like inside a closet or underneath a desk. This gives them a feeling of safety and allows them to slip into a meditative state.
Others prefer meditating outside in nature, on a field, by the beach, in a forest…
Then there are many people who have made a certain area of their home a meditation space. I will get deeper into this one in another post soon.
Don’t give up on meditation right away if you don’t enjoy it. Instead, look at meditation as an experiment and try different styles and techniques until you find what you enjoy. And you won´t regret sticking with it once you see results.
Another great article I read recently and I really recommend you reading is Meditation diet: 10 Tips on How to Eat Well for Meditation by Two Steps From Bliss. I have learned a lot from it and it might help you getting your meditation to work for you.
I hope this works to make meditation work for you. If you still have questions, you can always contact me, ask in the comments or book your free 30-minute call with me. I am always here for you 🙂