Let me start by saying right now that I am no expert on meditation. What I can say though, is that I have been doing it for the past eight years, and if I don't have my hour‘s meditation slot before going to bed, I will feel that I have not completed my day.
Many of my clients, when exploring their spirituality, ask what they should do to start their journey. I always reply with one word, “Meditate”. Why? For me, spirituality is about grounding oneself, connecting with the spirit world around me, becoming one with the whole.
It’s about Existence, connecting with the universe and all its’ wonders. I find meditation is one of the best ways to find this connection, this grounding, to simply just BE.
I've already written about "Meditation and Mindfulness" but today's article is keeping it really simple. Read on and find out how to start meditating and make it a daily practice (plus why you'll want to make it part of your life).
What People Have to Say About Meditation
I see the panic setting in on my clients’ faces as they hear the word “meditation”. The excuses start pouring out, “Oh, but I can’t keep still for more than two minutes”, “My mind is always full of thoughts”, “There is no ways I can empty my mind and be still”, “I don’t have time to meditate” and “There’s nowhere for me to meditate”.
The best is “I thought meditation was for those hippies, you know, the ones who sit cross-legged and hum while visualizing beautiful forests.” I let these excuses run their course and then I quietly proceed to tell my clients how I meditate – quite simple really.
Keeping Meditation Simple
I create a little ritual every evening. I sometimes meditate in bed. Other times I use my Place of Wellness, my healing room. I set the timer on my phone, light some incense, turn off the lights, and then close my eyes.
Sometimes, before I close my eyes, I use my singing bowl for five minutes to settle my mind and clear the energy. I focus for a few seconds on my breathing and then I speak to my favorite spirit guide.
Sometimes, I have an urge to connect with one of my spirit animals but whoever it is, I greet them and they greet me back. From then onwards, I ask for help, set my intentions for the meditation, or simply ask for guidance, advice or let my guides decide what I need to know.
What Meditation Has Done for Me
Meditation has taken me to places I never thought I would go to. I've seen faces, symbols, signs that sometimes make sense to me but most times don’t! I don’t question them; I just accept them for what they are.
Occasionally, I will have a vision of something or someone – I am still learning to accept these visions. I use meditation to heal others and to heal myself. Most importantly, meditation helps me to connect with those around me. These are my spirit guides and animals who I know love, support, and protect me at all times, have no judgment of me, and whom I can trust to guide me in good times and bad.
It’s a very reassuring place to be.
Just Do It!
When I started meditation, I was also skeptical until one evening I just knew I had to do it. So, setting my timer for five minutes, I sat in my bed, closed my eyes, and focused on my breaths, counting each breath up to 100 and then counting backward from 100 until the five minutes was up.
I let any thoughts that came into my mind wander in. I acknowledged them but then went back to my breaths and continued counting them….99,98.97.96….I did this for a few nights until I felt I could step it up to 10 minutes.
Then I was able to do 15 minutes with my eyes shut and a fairly calm mind. I don’t know when it was that I realized I was in a deep state of meditation. But, it was after a few weeks of starting the process when I realized one evening, that I was in another “state of mind”.
From then onwards, I aimed to do an hour every night. I've learned many other ways of using meditation to do shaman journeys, to heal, to discover my past lives, and to meet those who have moved on.
Some Tips to Help You Discover Meditation
There are many books describing how you can meditate. There are many courses you can take, and if one googles the word “meditation” on the Internet, there are endless articles about meditation and how one should go about getting into that “perfect state of meditation”.
I don’t discourage my clients from learning more about meditation but I do encourage them to go the simple route and just start simply. From then onwards, your journey of discoveries will take you where you should be taken. It’s really that simple.
Here are some tips to get you started:
Tip #1: Be Comfortable
Set up a place where you can meditate every day. This can be your bed or a room set aside for meditation. Even a little nook in your bedroom, lounge, or in your garden will work well as your meditation spot. You can choose to sit on a chair, a couch, or buy a beautiful meditation cushion such as this beautiful HiHealer Meditation Cushion.
Tip #2: Create a Ritual
I always like to give thanks for the day (before or ahead of me), express my gratitude, and ask for my guides to be with me. I then burn some incense - my favorites include lavender, Dragon's Blood, and patchouli. Vanilla is another one of my favorites and of course, White Sage.
It's always a good idea to keep some in-store so you never run out. Try this Satya Incense Gift Set which includes various beautiful scents.
Tip #3: Calm the Mind - Use a Singing Bowl
If you're feeling frazzled before going into meditation, play the singing bowl. I often use mine to calm my mind down before closing my eyes and starting my meditation. The singing bowl is very good for aligning all your energies and bringing them into a state of calmness. The sounds of the singing bowl are known to settle down your chaotic brain waves.
Add this gorgeous singing bowl to your meditation inventory - Tibetan Singing Bowl Set from Himalayan Bazaar on Amazon.
Tip #4: Breathe!
Your mind will do everything it can to distract you! Keep bringing your attention back to your breath. Notice where your breath is. Feel it in your stomach and imagine it moving up through your lungs, and out through your mouth. Inhale. Exhale. Focus on your breath. And, let your thoughts come and go. Don't resist them and don't fight them.
Read Jesse Coomer's book, "A Practical Guide to Breathwork: A Remedy for the Modern Human Condition" if you want to find out more about using your breath more efficiently, both in meditation and for healing your body.
Tip #5: Start Slowly
Don't force yourself to sit for one hour when you start meditating for the first time. Start by doing five minutes for a few days, slowly increasing it every few days to another five minutes. At some point, you'll suddenly find yourself meditating anything between five minutes to one hour or even longer.
And, if you don't manage more than five minutes ever - that's absolutely perfect! Five minutes does wonders for calming your mind so don't beat yourself up if that's all you can manage.
Read "The Book of Secrets: 112 Meditations to Discover the Mystery Within" by Osho for more methods on meditations and find one or more to suit your style.
I will keep plugging meditation! I'm a firm believer in meditating whenever possible. Why? Because I've seen the benefits of this daily practice. It brings me constantly to a place of grounding, calmness, clarity, and spiritual connection.
Meditation doesn't have to be complicated. it can be done anywhere, at any time, by everyone. It's not the domain of the yogis, the shamans, the gurus, or anyone else for that matter. It's open to everyone and I encourage you to start making it your daily practice.
You won't regret it.
This post was originally published on March 1st, 2021, and updated on January 21st, 2022.
* Any product links mentioned in this blog are "paid links."
** Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API