Meditation Techniques for Beginners
There are many different ways to bring the mind to a sense of clarity. Meditation techniques can be as simple as staying mindful of each breath, while as little as seven minutes a day will bring profound results. Any amount of effort put into meditation rewards one with a greater sense of self and a more fulfilling experience of life.
We’ll be taking a look at some of the easiest meditation techniques for beginners to start with. While quick and calming, each is suited to meditators of all skill levels.
Try more than one technique and you’ll soon see how different types of meditation can help bring you towards a lifestyle of happiness and mindfulness in no time.
The simplest way to start meditating is to focus your attention on your breath, and then inhale and exhale. This can be done standing up, sitting, or even lying down in a comfortable position. Mindful breathing should be practiced for 10-15 minutes a day but it can be used at any time to bring yourself to a state of calm. Inhale deeply through your nostrils for three seconds. Hold your breath for two seconds and then slowly exhale all the air through your mouth. Observe the feeling of your breath passing through your airways and into your lungs.
Feel the flow of each breath and see if you can focus your attention on all of the sensations of each breath. When the mind wanders, gently guide yourself back to placing your attention on your breathing. There is no need to reprimand yourself, it is natural for the mind to wander. Over time, it will become near effortless to meditate on your breath for longer and longer durations without any distractions and a deep sense of relaxation.
Counting your breaths is a deceivingly simple form of meditation that develops the ability to stay focused in the present quite quickly. It delivers fantastic results for most people and is coincidentally one of the simplest meditations to start. As with breathing meditation, assume a relaxed position of your preference (seated or lying down) and begin to breathe in through your nostrils.
Count each complete breath from inhalation to exhalation as a single step. Never allow yourself to count higher than seven and then start over. You’re welcome to adjust the top end of your count to anything you prefer but you’ll be rather surprised by just how often the mind becomes distracted and ends up counting to a much higher number. No matter how many times you have to reset without reaching your goal, always treat your mind like a child. Never divert your attention back to its point of focus with force just positive gentle encouragement.
Breath of Fire
The breath of fire is a yogic breathing technique which cleanses and raises alertness. This ancient Kundalini meditation can take some getting used to and should be avoided by anyone who experiences vertigo, and also by anyone with high blood pressure or pregnant. Performing the breath of fire regularly strengthens the solar plexus which is a region of the energetic body which often retains negativity due to non-acceptance. It’ll relieve pain and give your mind the boost that it needs to function optimally, ideal for prepping before work, a taxing task, or anything that requires heightened mental acuity.
Start by sitting straight up making sure to fully extend the region between your navel and heart. Breath and out using your nose only. On each inhale, imagine your stomach filling with air and press your belly out. When you exhale use your abdominal muscles to push the air out of each breath. Start slowly to get used to the action of your belly rising and falling and then pick up pace. Shorten each breath and breathe faster and faster.
You’re trying to keep the inhalation and the exhalation at the same duration. You can expect a mind pleasing tingling sensation after taking your first few breaths. Ultimately, you’re aiming to do roughly three sets of thirty seconds each, upping the total length of your meditation to a total of four minutes by the time you are proficient.
Yoga and Moving Meditations
Yoga is a form of active meditation which opens up a world of opportunities to those new to meditation. The asanas and postures of yoga help you unite with the greater self, what many call God, consciousness, and the universe. Practicing yoga is an exercise for the mind, body, and soul. The flow of moment leads the mind to place its attention upon the moment.
One doesn’t even need to leave the house to start with something as simple as a sun salutation. There are tons of video guides ready to show you this and more ways to start your day mindfully using Yoga. Don’t limit yourself to yoga alone when there are many forms of moving meditation. Try other art forms like Tai Chi and Chi Gong to balance yourself back into the flow using active meditation with movement.
Walking meditation is also known as mindful walking. It Zen Buddhism it is known as the practice of “kinhin.” This form of meditation serves as a bridge for mindfulness between other activities while remaining a standalone extension of conventional meditation. As one becomes used to remaining in a meditative state while moving it is much easier to maintain focus mindfully when doing other things. Traditionally, one begins a walking meditation directly following a traditional session of seated meditation. This makes it much easier to continue in a balanced relaxed state rather than reaching one from a conventional place of thought.
Try to walk mindfully as often as possible, reverting to a focus on your breath and the sensations that arise from your journey. Another method of walking meditation is to count your steps. For example. Left 1, right 2, left 3 while making sure that your breaths match your steps. Keep a good posture and stay aware of all sensations and thoughts arising in the moment.
Eating and Drinking Meditation
Mindful eating and mindful drinking should become core meditations within your daily practice. It is literally as simple as holding your attention on the act of eating or drinking and nothing else. As with conventional meditation, as thoughts arise gently guide the mind back to your point of focus which is the direct sensations arising from the act of eating or drinking. Pay attention to the feeling of the food or drink in your mouth as well as the flavors, texture and contemplate the value which the sustenance is providing.
These two forms of meditation are especially helpful during the early stages of meditation as they help you become aware of the triggers to your thought patterns. Once you are experienced, you can integrate mindful breathing expanding the scope of this type of meditation. Eating and drinking mindfully also unlocks our ability to discern which preferences are best suited to our unique desires. Not everything that we come to like is exactly what it seems.
Meditation unlocks the root cause of habitual eating, drinking and other types of habits as well. There is no more effective way to help yourself understand your own reasoning than to follow the guidance of a trusted program like Meditation Mastery Secrets. Using it diligently will reveal the profound benefits of meditation.
Best ways to become accustomed to creative visualization is to intensely imagine colors and shapes before moving on to more complex sensations like sounds, smells, and tastes. Assume a relaxed position and clearly envision an object in a particular color within the mind’s eye. Bring yourself to a relaxed state as you visualize the image as vividly as possible.
Starting with basic pictures and simple conceptualization is the easiest way to help improve and develop advanced visualization skills. If you’re struggling with something as simple as a two-dimensional object in a single color then go for something even more abstract like a point or line. The aim is to have the object fill your mind while all attention on your body and surroundings fades away. Those who experience difficulty visualizing can try to project an image of the motion made by their hands or arms as a whole. Draw out shapes and lines before you while imagining the picture forming in your mind with your eyes closed. The process becomes easier and easier and serves as a great foundation for reaping the most benefits of guided meditation and other advanced forms.
Guided meditations are about the easiest for anyone to get started with. Beginners can find an endless selection of scripted meditations available online, while courses like Meditation Mastery Secrets hold some of the best material out there. A guided meditation will take you through a series of visualizations designed to bring you into the present by means of total immersion in an emotional experience.
If you are the type of person who finds following a guided meditation spoken out by another too difficult then write and record a script for yourself. A guided meditation doesn’t need to be filled with visual stimuli in order to be meaningful but the more sensations evoked, the greater the effect of the immersion.
Many meditators add appropriate stimuli to their sessions including tools such as the right type of incense, the right flavor food or drink prior to meditating, and the addition of other audio cues and stimulus such as sounds from nature and recordings. Guided meditations can be as straightforward as a series of positive affirmations or creative enough to be seen as a total stage, setting and play for the mind.
Meditation upon a candle flame is an extremely relaxing way to meet two goals of meditation. First, we calm our minds and guide our thoughts towards the present while naturally slowing our breathing as a consequence. Second, meditation upon a candle flame or other fixed object such as a yantra used in traditional Vedic beliefs helps to hone the creative visualization skills of the meditator. Set a timer with a fixed duration, mark a mark to follow on the candle, or pick a candle of the right dimensions if you’re a seasoned meditator.
Assume a relaxed, seated posture with a straight spine and let your gaze fall upon the flame. Doing this in a darkened room is highly beneficial to focus but entraining oneself to meditate at any time is preferred for habitual meditators with more practice. Guide your mind back to holding focus on the flame and observe the thoughts and sensations which arise. Meditation upon a candle can be combined with other points of focus such as an affirmation, mantra, or other mental imagery. Combine associations such as the color of your candle with an affirmation for meditation and you’ve turned a beginner meditation into advanced practice. There are lots of ways to hone your meditative focus using a fixed object like a candle.
Staying Aware of the Now
Meditation is a practice which allows you to provide your full attention to any point of focus. You are going to encounter hundreds and at times thousands of thoughts before you accept that in order to let the thought pass, you have to simply be aware of the thought, not take action.
Contemplating a thought in search of action or judgment is nothing but the machinations of a restless mind. The possibilities, questions and negative sensations such as “My face is itching” or “I think my neck is starting to hurt” are nothing but interference stemming from a lack of peace. One can see meditation as the art of letting go. You need to let go of tension in the body, chaos in the mind, and stress on the soul. Begin by learning how to let go of the body and then move on to progress through your thoughts.
The more you meditate the more you remind yourself how to live in the moment. One of the most effective methods of navigating meditation and the mind is provided by Meditation Mastery Secrets. Follow their program today for definite results requiring nothing more than a few minutes of your day.