I stumbled upon meditation as I began to practice yoga. I had been a smoker for over ten years, drank almost every weekend and lived a really cluttered life. My mind was all over the place. Then I began to practice meditation, and my life changed. For the first time I really believed I could quit smoking, drinking and I could take control of my life.
It was really overwhelming at first. When I thought about meditation my mind conjured up images of floating monks and endless chanting. But as I researched it further, and began to practice, I realised that meditation was not as overwhelming as I had first thought. Now I meditate everyday, whenever I feel the need to calm my mind, dull a smoke craving, or feel an emotion that I’m struggling to come to terms with. Here is a guide on how to approach and begin on your meditation journey.
First of all, it is important to remember than anyone can meditate anywhere. You do not need fancy candles, music, or chanting, however if those things help you then by all means use them. You can meditate whilst on the bus, waiting in line, or at your desk. It is as simple as closing your eyes and breathing . That’s it. When I first began, I felt really anxious because I could not stop my thoughts from coming, but then I realised, that’s ok. Appreciate the thoughts you have whilst in meditation, and then let them go. Don’t put pressure on yourself to calm your thoughts, after more practice it will come naturally.
Start by sitting comfortably, even lying down. Close your eyes and breathe. Every person is different, the most important thing is to find out what position and breathing style works for you. Focus your attention on your breath, if you want you can recite a mantra (words that are positive in order to transform your thoughts and feelings). When your mind feels calm and relaxed bring yourself back to reality, open your eyes and continue your day with a fresh perspective.
Meditation will help you to gain a clearer perspective in your life, and help you to fulfil your true potential. Meditation can range from relaxed peaceful down time, to a focused exercise in self-reflection. I have been smoke free for almost two months, I don’t drink anymore and I find it easier to cope with anxiety and stress. I have realised my true dreams and potential and have a new-found lust and excitement for my life.
Give it a go, you never know, it might just change your life.