Meditation – A Guide to Getting Started
Meditation came to me during a turbulent time in my life. I tried seeking help from many different resources but had trouble receiving help until I found meditation.
Meditation allowed me to create a space where I could sit with what was happening and find ways to move through. I tried different types of meditations, tried meditating at different times of day, tried with groups and solo, and more until I began developing a practice that works for me. I’ve been practicing for 7 years now.
Practice. Meditation is a practice. It is not something that will heal you overnight, though there are moments of sudden clarity, acceptance, and understanding that come with the practice that can make you feel changed in an instant. Think of meditation as an opportunity to use your breath, silence, and stillness as tools. With consistent practice, you will develop your ability to use these tools to relieve stress, increase focus, sleep better, and so much more.
So be patient with yourself and be patient with the process.
Where to begin?
I recommend taking it slow when getting started with meditation. This means you may not want to jump into a 40-minute guided chakra healing meditation your first time. Instead, maybe you'll start with a 1-5 minute body scan or gratitude meditation instead. Taking it slow allows you to be in control of your journey with no judgment. Below are some great options for beginners to try in their practice.
Not ready to sit still? Try a walking meditation.
5 minute - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=09EO9IJgOiI
10 minute - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8D3oh2Rdvyw
Want something to hold your attention? – Try a candlelight meditation.
Focus on a flame with candlelight meditation
Want someone to guide you? – Try a guided meditation.
3 minute - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YfuHtRNmpaQ
Apps to try: Insight Timer, Headspace, and so much more!
Don’t want a guide? - Sit in silence
How to prepare for and drop into silent meditation.
Need some noise? – Try music, nature sounds, or binaural beats
Chill beats - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hHW1oY26kxQ
Sunrise waves - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A2_yg19Pu7Y
Binaural beats with music - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LFGsZ6ythQQ&t=576s
Binaural beats pure tone - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=66tq9xji0xA&t=1372s
I started with guided meditations and still find myself revisiting meditations that I tried during my first year of practicing. I liked that there was a voice that I could focus on. The guiding voice helped me quiet the chatter in my mind more easily, so I could fully drop into the experience. I also tried candlelight meditations during my first few weeks of practicing. I appreciated the silence and having a small flame to focus on. The flame swayed, quivered, grew, shrank, and glowed softly which helped focus my attention.
Essentially guiding voices and candlelight helped me move through the initial discomfort that came with sitting still. There was some discomfort for me, and there might be some discomfort for you. It will pass. This is something new and unfamiliar to you, so be patient, show up for yourself, and allow the process to work its magic.