I really enjoy my yoga community! For getting started meditating, I’ll share a few things that work for me. Meditation has calmed me, lowered my blood pressure, increased my air intake by 200% (yes, I measured), and made my life “lighter”. This may be something you are interested in…. so give it a try! I’d also recommend relaxation yoga, restorative yoga, yoga nidra and attending Compline at Stanford University Chapel (Sundays 8pm) or finding a mediation or yoga hiking group.
I often have ‘monkey mind’ after work and dinner… that makes meditating difficult. Also, experiment with different times of day or days of week and various places. You’ll find one that works.
- Take a silent walk around your block at home. Being outside can reset your mind.
- Get in the most comfortable position to meditate (but not sleep)… try a chair, if sitting on a mat is not working.
- Use bolsters/pillows to stabilize your posture, eye pillows (or washcloths work) to gently shut out light, trying relaxing from head to toe first, calling each area and consciously relaxing that spot.
- Breathing – (this is my biggest help!) imagine a square.
- Inhale: Count 1 2 3 4 slowly while breathing in – imagine moving from Left to Right along the top of the square
- hold breath for 4, imagine moving down the right side of the square
- Exhale: count to 4, gently exhaling, imagine moving from Right to Left on the square.
- hold breath for 4, imagine moving up the left side of the square
- Repeat (you may alter the number of counts to 2 or 3 or 5 depending on your breath, but keep a consistent number on each side of the square), the calmness and repetition combined with giving your brain “something to do” really helps.
- Meditate with a friend or a sleepy dog or with white noise. To involve your sense of smell try a bit of lavender essential oil on your palms / or soles of feet.