Stressed? Here Are 4 Tips to Begin Your Meditation Practice
A recent study from the American Psychological Association finds that financial woes, coupled with a barrage of negative news of politics and war, have pushed a majority of Americans to unprecedented levels of stress. In addition, 87 percent of those surveyed cited rising costs of everyday items, such as groceries and gas, as a “significant source of stress.”
Although there is no quick fix to long-term stress, there are tools we can utilize to begin a routine of easing tension in our lives. Meditation or quieting the mind is a great way to relieve stress, improve focus and restore the mind to calmness. Our society rewards constant movement and action, making meditation a challenge for many. So, if you’re new to meditation, it’s important to practice patience with yourself.
Follow these tips to improve your meditation practice.
- Choose a time to meditate. It’s ideal to meditate before your day gets hectic. If this isn’t possible, remain consistent by committing to a time and place daily.
- Make your space special. Transform an extra room, or even a closet into a peaceful place to meditate. Add candles, incense or an oil burner to make it more tranquil. Invest in a meditation pillow for comfort.
- Focus on the breath. Establish a steady rhythm to slow a racing mind. Breathe slowly and deeply, releasing tension.
- Try focused meditation. If you don’t like closing your eyes when meditating, light a candle or incense and while meditating, focus only on the light. Connect with the flame and still the mind by directing your energy on the light.