Fun fact: the physical practice of yoga was founded thousands of years ago to prepare the body for meditation. That’s right! Yoga was invented as a way to prepare the body to find stillness for long periods of meditation!
Start with a 5-minute mediation practice! You can meditate lying down or sitting upright in a comfortable position. The goal of meditation is to calm your mind and find inner peace. I recommend that you practice ideally right after you wake up or right before you go to bed. I also like to meditate when I feel anxious or stressed as a way to connect inward and to the present moment. Begin your daily practice and you will be so surprised at how meditation can transform your life. You are in your mind all day long and meditation helps your mind become a sacred and safe space to be.
- Find a quiet place to sit or lie down. Find a space where you won’t be easily distracted.
- If you choose to sit during mediation, it can be comfortable to sit with the with your hips slightly higher than your knees. You can prop your hips up using a yoga block, blanket, or pillow. Let your hands rest on your knees, palms down for grounding into the present moment or palms up to receive something, maybe guidance, energy, etc. Lengthen your spine charging energy out the crown of your head. Relax your shoulders, and lift your chest slightly.
- If you choose to lie down find a supine position lying on your back. Your legs can lie long in front of you with arms by your side. Your palms can face down for grounding into the present moment or palms can face up to receive something, maybe guidance, energy, etc. Maybe you bring one hand to your heart and one to your low belly to tune inwards.
- Set a timer for 5 minutes. I use the app Insight Timer! Or you can practice along with one of our meditations. The end of our meditations will always be signaled with a singing bowl chime.
- Gently close your eyes.
- Notice the natural flow of your breath. Notice the gentle expansion and contraction of your low belly and your chest. Feel the flow of cool air through your nose and the warm flow of air as it exits your nose. Begin to find a pause between the inhale and the exhale, and the space between.
- Most people think meditation is the absence of thoughts. That is not at all the case. Thoughts will come and go but the point it not to hold onto them. When thoughts arise, don’t judge them. Allow them to be there, but just simply watch what thoughts appear and then let them go. When you find your thoughts are taking over return your focus back to the breath. Is it soft? Is it heavy? Is it slow? Is it quick? Is it long? Is it short?
- Another tool to focus on your practice is to repeat a mantra, word, or affirmation either out loud or silently in your head. Some affirmations could be: “I am okay” “I am enough” “I am all that I need.” You can use mala beads as a way to repeat your phrase over and over again. There are 108 beads on a mala necklace plus the guru bead. Starting at the guru bead, use your thumb to count each smaller bead, pulling it toward you as you recite your mantra. Do this 108 times, traveling around the mala, until you once again reach the guru bead.
- When your 5 minutes are up, bring your hands together at your heart center. Take a big breath in, and then open the mouth exhale. Take a moment to extend gratitude to yourself and make a mental list of three things you are grateful for.