Meditation for Beginners

meditation for beginners

Do you feel a little dubious about meditation? By sharing my journey of discovery, I trust it will give you insights to know what to expect from yours.

Science backs the untold benefits of meditation, though I’m not approaching the subject from that point of view. Instead, it is about my personal experience and how I made a start in my meditation practice and how you can too.

Meditation – Spiritual Science

Previously meditation was dismissed by Western religious traditions. It was considered almost evil due to its ‘sinister’ origins. In modern times some believe meditation to be leaning towards the whoo-whoo side of things. Hey, there is no judgment – we’re all entitled to our beliefs. I think it bears saying that a great deal of what is vilified by religion, the media, and sometimes, science – ends up being something that benefits humanity! That said, I’m setting the same challenge for you, given to me: don’t knock it until you try it!

Now, I should tell you that I am not a whoo-whoo type. I love hard facts. Science is my bag (sure, even scientists get it wrong at times). I lead with this so you understand I didn’t start meditation as a spiritual exercise. It’s important to note that most religions incorporate meditation in some form. Prayer is a form of meditation. Why am I banging on about the religious aspect? I suppose because I have heard religious people make bizarre claims about anything that’s slightly to the left of what they practise or are familiar with. For the most part, I tried meditation out of morbid curiosity and because I was told it was ‘bad’. I wanted to find out what all the fuss was about. If I’m honest, I approached meditation with healthy scepticism.

How I Made A Start

On my journey into meditation, I came across the wonderful Dr Wayne Dyer. My initial thoughts were that I would find meditation arduous and mind-numbing, something to dull the senses. I was surprised to discover that dialling down during sessions was profoundly beneficial to my overall performance.

Here is a link to the meditation I first used. The introduction music is a little dated. If you can get beyond the music to the core of the message – you will experience bliss!

What Happens During Meditation?

During meditation, things seem to filter out. Mental is renewed, stress dissipates. There comes a sense of ‘knowing’ and renewed well-being. In my times of meditation, I can temporarily forget about my schedule and my 1000 point to-do list. Meditation provides a space to relax, think deeply, and be instructed by the soul. It creates a sanctuary to withdraw to and silently be. Aside from this, the razor-sharp mental clarity that comes after a session is unrivalled and probably what I love most.

I think it’s different for everyone, depending on what they aim to achieve in their meditation times. The common consensus is that meditation enhances the ability to cope with stress and the pressures of daily life with renewed vigour.

I have no doubts that once you engage in practising meditation, you too will experience similar benefits!

When To Meditate

If you are starting this journey, I recommend trying 20 minutes in the morning and 20 minutes in the evening before bed. Morning meditation helps you to ease into the day. Bedtime meditation helps to disengage, quiet your mind and ease you into the realm of sleep. Also, it’s less tedious than counting sheep.

I prefer morning meditation because this helps me to set the tone for my day. Most of my clients will tell you I’m one of the calmest people they know. I have meditation to thank in part for this.

By setting your day up in a way that aids how your day flows, you will experience greater ease in your schedule. Meditation, plus structure and practice, returns results!

How To Meditate

Below are some pointers to begin your meditation practice:

  • Find a safe, quiet place where you can sit uninterrupted. When I do eyes-closed meditation, I tend to stay at home. Sometimes I go to the woods or the park, but I am always aware of who is in my surroundings. For personal security, I don’t close my eyes. Instead, I pick a direction to look in and stare with a relaxed gaze as my mind goes into chill-mode.
  • If you are brand new to meditation, the best time to start is on a day when you don’t have to be in the office. This way, there is less pressure, and you can take your time and enjoy your meditation. I recommend that you start with a guided meditation.
  • Wear loose, comfortable clothing so that you do not feel constricted.

Posture

  • Sit in a comfortable chair or on the floor with my back against a wall. In guided meditation – the instructor will sometimes tell you which is preferable or give you more detailed instructions.

Practical Must-Haves

  • Comfortable clothes – yoga pants and a loose top or shirt are great for meditation. Light-weight clothing is perfect. I don’t encourage practising in your fluffy slippers and PJs unless your session is before bedtime.
  • Noise-cancelling headphones – they help to maintain focus.
  • A quiet space – there will come a time when you will be able to be surrounded by people and manage to steal 5 minutes to quiet your mind. Until then, find a solitary spot where you can practice in peace.

Getting You Started With Meditation

As previously mentioned, I started out using Dr Wayne Dyer’s meditations. More specifically, I used I AM – Wishes Fulfilled Meditation. I highly recommend this as a starting point. Dr Dyer mentions some biblical references etc. Don’t be tempted to throw the baby out with the bathwater. Watch the video below and let me know if you enjoyed it!

I wish you a wonderful time in meditation.

Please feel free to contact me should you have any questions or wish to discuss anything in this post. You can contact me via my Contact Page or book a call with me by clicking the button below.

Respect for your journey.

Try Out Wayne Dyer's 'I Am' Meditation

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JAN LAUREN IS A MEMBER OF THE NATIONAL COUNCIL OF PSYCHOTHERAPISTS

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