It’s very easy to feel like our minds are running at 100 miles per hour juggling jobs, family, friends and pets. One of the best ways to connect deeper to ourselves and slow down our minds is via mediation. Studies have shown it increases gray matter in the brain, helps with sleep, greatly reduces pain, and can make you more likely to live longer. When you personally experience meditation, you will see that the benefits go even beyond these. Meditation allows us to go into a deep detachment, helping us still our thoughts, clear our minds and bring forth a purity within our entire being.

Everyone can meditate. And it can start with just a simple breath.

To prepare yourself for meditation, allow your breath to deepen. As you breathe in, feel your diaphragm and your lungs expand. Let your muscles soften. Relax every part of you. Feel the air around you. Let go and be in the present moment. Feel yourself flow. Feel the energy around you. Close your eyes and let go of the world.

At some point during your meditation, you will enter “the zone”. This state is where all the benefits from meditating are obtained. It’s that feeling of connected-ness with everything around you. A loftiness that makes you feel so light that you feel as if you are floating. You are in complete control of your mind. Your concentration is solely on your breath, allowing your mind to stay clean. For this moment in time, try to think about nothing, just feel the inner peace.  Once you find yourself in “the zone”, keep going deeper into the feeling, this is how you know your meditation has started.

A deep breath will always soothe you. Breathing is the most important thing we do as humans, that why practicing breathing techniques can greatly improve your life. Keep in mind, you want to progressively increase how long you stay in “the zone” in order to further your development towards achieving a cleaner, higher vibe.

Ocean Breath (Ujjayi Pranayama)

Fill your lungs to the top to begin. Once full, take another sip of air. When you exhale, slowly release all the air. Imagine you’re fogging up a mirror. Tighten your throat, letting out a small amount of air at a time, as if you’re breathing out through a straw. As you breathe out, you want to mimic the same sound generated when you whisper. Make a whispered “ahhhhh” sound while breathing out for as long as you can. The goal is to gradually increase your exhale length to 15 seconds. Thirty seconds for champions! Practice this technique with the mouth closed.

Try this for 5 minutes to start. As you become more adept, increase the time in 5 minute increments up to 20 minutes.

Breath of Fire (Kapalabhati Pranayama)

Before you begin, start with a couple of deep breaths. This technique is achieved by pumping air out using series of fast, short and strong exhales. The inhales should mimic the same pace, but be more passive in nature. It should feel as if your lungs are refilling by themselves as a reaction to every exhale. Use your diaphragm to pump air in and out several times per second. Focus your energy only on breathing out.  Practice this technique with the mouth closed.

This breath in yoga is referred to as a “skull shining” breath and clears the mind quickly. This breath is powerful and can be intense. It can bring up several emotions that may have been hidden deep inside. If it starts to feel too intense, return to ocean breath, as it’s softer and more soothing.

Try this for 1-3 minutes to start. Gradually work up to 10-15 minutes.

Mantra Meditation

While breathing is a fantastic technique for your meditation toolbox, you can also use mantra meditation. People who love words will find additional fun from this particular method. There are many types of mantras to choose from. You can start with a simple phrase that soothes your soul.

Repeat your mantra out loud for 2 minutes, allowing the rest of the world to fall away each time you say it. Bring you focus purely to the moment. Then repeat it within your mind, hearing your own voice repeat the mantra for the following 13-18 minutes. When your focus starts to drift, gently guide you mind back toward the mantra you are repeating.

You can create your own mantra, using all affirming positive words. A few great mantas to start with are:

“Every day in every way, I am getting better and better.”

“Life is good.”

“I am vital and alive.”The Magnificent Seven 2016 film download

“I choose happiness.”

 

Written by: Zachariah Bourne & Andrilisa Read.

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