Meditation: Forget About Techniques
Surely you know about meditation techniques.
Don’t you want to relax?
Don’t you want to ease the negative chatter of your mind?
Don’t you want to become calmer, more focused in your daily life, less embroiled in unnecessary drama?
If you answered ‘yes’ to any of the above questions, you could be helped greatly by a meditation practice. If you’re willing. If you’re ready. As mentioned in my previous post, meditation requires commitment and patience.
But the deep secret is this: you need not observe a prescribed, strict, set of meditation techniques to meditate well.
But Don’t I Have To Do This Right?
Forget about that. Right now.
Meditation rules are downers. I feel constricted just following them. I am not a meditation purist. I meditate one way: My Way.
I tried to follow conventional processes in the beginning: to sit up, ramrod straight, cross-legged, palms raised. Result: back strain, agitated sore wrists, body fatigue, concentration loss.
Forget guidelines that don’t work for you; it’s the ‘doing’ that matters, and the outcome.
Meditation results in more calm, more awareness, less tension. Meditation is there for you to practice, whenever you need it. This is a huge comfort all by itself.
Just imagine a glorious meditation guide saying to you (in a manner of speaking) over and over again: “It’s Going to Be Alright. It’s Going to Be Alright.”
That’s what you can expect from a meditation practice: a promise of reassurance and comfort. You learn, through the breathing, the mantras, the stillness… that everything in life, for good or bad, will be alright.
And consider this: while it is beneficial to practice meditation regularly, you don’t have to. You can meditate when you want to.
Sounds reasonable, doesn’t it?
My Basic Meditation Techniques
- Remove all interruptive elements – children, spouse, pets, all forms of extraneous technology.
- Turn out the lights in the room.
- Get into a bed. Pull up the covers.
- Put a warm (not blazing hot) heating pad on your stomach.
- Put an eyeshade on, especially if prone to visual distractions.
- Put on headphones (for listening to a guided meditation.)
- Get comfortable in the bed.
- Lie on your back.
- Load this simple youtube meditation: http://youtu.be/hm2Wymc0FtQ (courtesy of Lara Patriquin.) (Or try other guided meditations. There are so many available online. Find one that resonates with you.)
- Follow the guide’s words – to the best of your ability. Don’t worry a whit if you have a million thoughts that cross your mind while the guide is ‘talking’ to you. This is normal; these thoughts will ebb and flow, even recede as your practice increases in frequency. The racing thoughts will also educate you. How? Find out!
But What If I’m Still Not Doing It Right?
There is no perfection in meditation. This is where most people get tripped up.
For me, it’s about feeling “different” when the meditation ends.
I won’t tell you what that feeling is. Or the “different.” You’ll have to find that out for yourself.
There are really no words to describe what meditation offers. Only subtle, stress relieving results. And only if you find a method that works for you.
It’s not about techniques, it’s about a journey to feeling more in balance, and finding comfort, with a subtle calm that seeps gently into your daily life. Meditation also offers unparalleled understanding into self-compassion, and why we must do for ourselves; that self-love and inner work is not selfish, but something we all need to be well.