Alternative ways to meditate
It isn’t always possible to find a quiet space and sit in peace on a daily basis. Here are some other methods to help you reach your meditation goals.
Not all of us have the time to sit and appear to be doing nothing, even though the act of meditation is far from nothing, it is actually one of the best things we could possibly do for ourselves, and so finding other ways to meet your wellness needs can prove very rewarding.
Meditation has been shown to provide remarkable benefits to those who manage to stick with it, including:
- Blood pressure normalization
- Stress reduction
- Greater resistance to stress
- Improved cognitive function by reshaping the actual brain
- Promoting neuroplasticity
- Anxiety reduction
- Immune system improvements
The true purpose of meditation is to go beyond the mind and experience our essential nature, to find peace and happiness. Going beyond the mind is easier said than achieved, as it is the mind itself which obstructs us from achieving this awareness. For those who experience difficulty in meditating the traditional way the following methods can help you achieve similar benefits of meditation without having to sit quietly alone in a room…
Cleaning up your act
It may sound bizarre but carrying out a monotonous household chore can actually provide you with the perfect situation to meditate. Cleaning windows, vacuuming, polishing furniture, washing the car, are probably things which we would all prefer to avoid, but it has to be done at some point so why not make it something positive and worthwhile for your personal wellness, not just a boring routine task? As long as you manage to avoid general thoughts creeping in you can absolutely be present and reap the benefits of meditation whilst cleaning the house!
Work it out
Taking a leisurely walk, run or swim can give you plenty of time to clear your mind and focus on your mantra for the day. Before setting off make a decision as to what you need to work on and create the mantra which will carry you towards your goal. Repeat this and only this in your mind when you notice any other thoughts creeping in. And if they do, let them out again without hanging on to them or making judgements. Make sure you concentrate on your bodily movements, how your foot feels, how the water feels as you push it past you, how the air feels on your face, how your weight shifts as you move.
Practice practice practice
A yoga or tai chi session is a great tool to take you to a meditative state. Both practices reinforce all the sentiments of meditation whilst keeping you present. Focussing on the breath and movements rather than your thoughts and external distraction makes for achievable mindfulness.
Mind what you think
When we react to outside influences, whether it be positive or negative, or dwell on something that may be happening to us, we are subjecting ourselves to a mind full of judgements. A way in which to practice what meditation teaches us is to be aware of our thoughts and reactions and refrain from making judgements which will, in turn, clutter up and stress out our mind. Acknowledgement of challenging situations and then moving on, rather than harbouring the thought or reacting to it, is far more conducive to a peaceful state of mind.
Take a breath
If you are experiencing a challenging moment, feeling stressed, or simply need a peaceful boost, stop what you are doing and concentrate on your breath for a couple of minutes. Set a timer and just breathe, clear the mind, locate any negative thoughts or judgements that are clouding and fogging up your head and breathe them out. If you find it difficult to zone out try counting your breaths and see how many deep inhalations you do in two minutes.
In actual fact you can turn anything into a meditative practice as long as you are avoiding any outside mental stimulation, such as from the television or a book. As long as you have made the conscious decision to remove yourself mentally and feel the world via your senses, you are experiencing a form of meditation.
cited from Mark Sisson at marksdailyapple.com.
Online diploma course in Meditation
Here at the School of Natural Health Sciences we offer a distance learning diploma course of 11 lessons in Meditation. This Meditation course, takes the student on a journey through both Eastern and Western ‘meditation techniques’; from ‘Chakra Balancing’ to ‘Walking the Labyrinth’. No previous qualifications are required, as this course covers the appropriate basics for those studying this subject for the first time.