May is National Meditation month. Meditation is a training practice that allows you to become more aware of your thoughts and feelings. Meditation also helps you find inner balance and achieve a calm state of mind. It works by training your brain to focus on one thing at a time.
Want to meditate but not sure where to begin? Here are step-by-step instructions to make your meditation practice successful.
- Choose a time of day to meditate. Some people meditate in the morning just as they wake up or in the evenings after they have completed their daily activities. You can meditate any time of day, but you are more likely to stick to it if you set a schedule.
- Before you begin, adjust your space to make it more conducive to meditation. You can either turn off or dim lights, partially close window shades, light some candles, burn scented oils and/or play some meditation music. You can meditate anywhere, so these settings are not mandatory but the less distraction you have, the better your experience will be.
- It is recommended that you set an intention at the beginning of the meditation. An intention can be something that you want to align yourself with or something you hope to achieve coming out of the practice.
- Next, sit or lay somewhere that is comfortable like a chair or bed. You can also use a meditation pillow.
- Close your eyes and breathe naturally, focusing on your breath. As you draw awareness to your breath, your mind will disengage from other thoughts and activities. During the process of meditation, it is natural for thoughts to enter your mind. Observe them and then let them go by refocusing on your breath. The goal is not to ignore the thoughts. It is to acknowledge their presence, accept them in a non-judgmental way, and then allow them to move on.
- Repeat this process for two to three minutes. If you can continue this process for longer than a few minutes, then go ahead and do so until you are ready to complete your meditation. If you are doing this for the first time, you may only be able to concentrate for a few minutes. This is ok. Just keep practicing every day, adding a minute or more each time.
- At the end of your meditation slowly bring your awareness away from your breath and focus outwardly. You can slowly bring your focus back to your surroundings by observing sounds or focusing on different feelings in your body. You can even wiggle your toes or rub your hands together to help bring you back into the present. If you set an intention at the beginning of your meditation, express gratitude at this time that your intention has been met. Open your eyes slowly and bring your awareness back to everything around you. This completes your meditation.
If meditating on your own seems difficult for you, start with guided meditations. Guided meditations have a narrator that instructs you on what to do throughout the process. There are lots of guided meditations that serve different purposes. Check out our guided beauty meditation here. To enjoy more guided meditations for beauty and overall well-being, subscribe to our newsletter here.