Meditation That Works for Everyone
There is hope for those of us who have tried meditating and failed get our Zen on. Instead we just sit there with thoughts buzzing through our heads, stressing out about how our feet are going numb. This is not peaceful, not relaxing and definitely not lowering our blood pressure. Do not despair! All it takes to get those benefits in a meditation that works for everyone and more are a few simple mindfulness exercises.
So what is meditation, really?
Meditation is not that well understood by most. Even many people who practice meditating regularly are really just holding still for a while, thinking about cool energy movement visuals and hoping for the best.
When we meditate, or do mindfulness exercises, what we are doing is effecting our state of mind. That is the purpose of meditation.
As far as the physical benefits of meditation are concerned it works like this. If you are mentally agitated, your body will be tense and under strain. If you are mentally calm, then your body will be relaxed and running smoothly. For the most part, relaxed is way better.
Now to the good stuff. The exercise that works for everyone.
The mindfulness meditation exercise:
Breath is the key. If you want to calm your mind then you need to give it an anchor point. That anchor point may as well be something that is good for you physically as well.
Deep full breaths trigger the body to relax. They oxygenate the brain more effectively. Full breathing also gently massages your internal organs. This increases blood flow and improves organ function a bit.
Now, the mindfulness exercise works like this.
Take a deep breath in. Pay attention as the air runs in through your nose or mouth, down your throat, notice the expansion of the chest and stomach as the lungs fill.
Breath out gently. Notice the air flowing out on it’s own, the relaxed contraction of the torso as the lungs deflate.
That’s it. Don’t think about how you should feel. Don’t try to stop thinking. Just breathe and pay relaxed attention.
The trick is. This exercise is so simple that you should all do it any time you think of it.
It’s great to intentionally set aside some time for meditation on a daily basis. Even more important though is working your breath throughout your day. Do it on your way to work, when you shower in the morning, while you’re walking your dog, playing with your kids, arguing with your boss, whatever. Anytime and every time you think of working your breath, do it.
Your state of mind is your choice. All you have to do is practice your ability to effect it.