Self-Love Challenge: Week 7: Meditation Guides and Techniques
13-WEEK SELF LOVE CHALLENGE
WEEK SEVEN: MEDITATION GUIDES AND TECHNIQUES
PREVIOUS WEEKS IN CASE YOU MISSED THEM:
INTRO TO WEEK SEVEN:
Meditation can be a hard topic for many.
Even for people who have consistentlymeditated before, there will always be days that are a struggle for them.
Meditation is an art.It’s a learningprocess.It’s a way to grow in acceptance.
Meditation is not about silencing the mind, but about allowing your soul to speak to you.
It’s about finding a divine connectionwith yourself and learning to accept who you are.
Like stated in the intro, meditation is a way to connect with your divine soul.
It’s allowing your mind to stay quiet while your soul speaksto you on all levels.
It’s a way to gain acceptance to who you are and who you want to become.
I have found it to be a beautiful process because everything you seek(courage, inspiration, ideas, etc,) is already within you. You just have to find it.
Once again, whatever you seek is already within you.
So, how do you do it?
Honestly, there are many ways that are considered meditation that we will get to later.
I started adding mediation into my morning routines and it has added so much valueinto my day-to-day life.
Meditation allows me to calm my mind, re-ground myself to my inner being and starts my day with clarity.
The process of meditating every morning did not come easily to me. It took a while to get in the rhythm of it.
However, when I surrender to it I totally hit the refresh button for my day. It has the ability to relax you, ground you, and give you clarity.
You may be wondering how you quiet the mind. My answer to you is that it’s a huge process. You’re not going to be able to be in complete silence for a long, long time so do not get frustrated if you expect this to happen.
Thoughts will come up and they will try to distract you.
When this happens, just label them with whatever makes sense to you. For instance, notice a thought, label it as a worry, or as a to-do list, then let it float away like a cloud.
Notice the thought. Acknowledgethat it’s there. Then let it float awayand bring yourself back to your breath.
Notice, Acknowledge, Breathe.
It’s okay if this is difficult for you to do. It takes a lot of practice and training of the brain.
One of the first things you need to accomplish when beginning to meditate is to find a peaceful spot.
You may need to create this spot if it doesn’t already exist to you. Add anything that calms and ground you. For me, this includes some crystals, a Himalayan salt lamp, my mala, and essential oils.
Your place of zen could also be an excluded place out in nature. Somewhere that brings you utter peace and serenity.
Once you are in your calming place, find a comfortable position. This could be a comfortable seat or laying on your back in savasana.
Now, it is good to realize that there are many waysto accomplish a meditation.
It could be from one minute to one houror whatever works for you. There is no right or wrong way.
I’m going to walk you through three different techniques you could possibly meditate. This way you can get a feel for what one will work best for you.
1. PLAYING AROUND WITH YOUR BREATH
Focusing on your breath is a wonderful way to begin meditating. Deep breathing clears your mind and relaxes your entire body.
Way 1:Inhale for 5. Hold for 6. Exhale for 8. Repeat multiple times.
Way 2:3-part Breath. Inhale into your chest, hold it there then inhale into yourbelly, hold it, then inhale into your entire body, exhale it all out slowly. Repeat multiple times.
Way 3:Alternate nostril breathing.Watch this video instructed by Nadi Sodhanato understand alternate nostril breathing.
2. USING A MALA
Mala’s typically have 108 beads. The 108 signifies many different things depending on the culture. One of the meanings is that the diameter of the sun is 108x the Earth and it is said to remain harmonious between the sun, the moon, and our energies with our quality of life.
Another significance is in breaking down the numbers. The universe is represented as 1 thing, as nothing(0), and as everything(8/infinity).
Regardless of what you believe the mala signifies, it keeps count of your breath and how many times you repeat a mantra.
What is a mantra?A mantra is a motto/an affirmation. It could be something that you want to carry with you for your entire day or something that you want to repeat to yourself until you believe that it’s true.
Examples of mantras:
I am loved, I am loving, I am love.
I am worthy of love and healing.
I am grounded.
I am confident.
I am happy and joyous.
I am manifesting my desires.
Om Shanti, Shanti, Shanti: Peace within, Peace around, and Peace universally
Sat Nam (Sa Ta Na Ma): birth/life/death/rebirth: true identity
Choose any of these mantras or one of your own that resonates with you more. Set an intention for your practice.Find your quiet place and comfortable seat with your Mala.
With each bead of the mala you willinhale while saying your mantra, move to the next bead and exhale while saying your mantra again. Repeat this cycle until you move all the way around your mala. Use it as a guide, surrender to the practice.
3. GUIDED IMAGERY
Guided imagery may be the easiest to begin with because you’re doing less work.
You can find guided imagery on Youtube or through apps on your phone (such as: Virtual Hope Box, Guided Mind, Calm, Simple Habit, Headspace, etc).
You simply pick one that seems enjoyable to you, find your comfortable position in your quiet place, and deep breathe while listening to the voice of the meditation.
Remember, if an unwanted thought comes to mind, notice and acknowledge it, and then let it go.
BOOK RECOMMENDATION FOR WEEK SEVEN:
The Heart of Meditation by the Dalai Lama.I’ve read this book multiple times and each time there’s always something new to learn that I overlooked before. I think that’s the beauty of it. It forms to where you are at in life right now.
GOALS FOR WEEK SEVEN:
1. Download a guided imagery app and get acquainted with it (such as: Virtual Hope Box, Guided Mind, Calm, Simple Habit, Headspace, etc).
2. Find or create your place of peace and serenity.
3. Try meditating at least 3 separate times this week.