Yogamint

in depth

09-Oct-2011

A Minute to Win It

Meditation for Beginners

Meditation is a time-tested tool for stress reduction, calming the mind, gaining clarity and increasing intuition and concentration. Growing up, I saw my father meditate daily and heard his advice through my teenage years: "know the inner self and meditate." Until I began a daily practice I didn’t understand what this meant and why it is so crucial as we go through the ups and downs of life.

When you meditate consistently, you access a deep well of joy and peace. Often my yoga students tell me that they (or their minds) are too busy to meditate. Paradoxically, this is exactly why you need to meditate. The discipline of stilling the mind teaches you that you are the master of your own mind. Who is the silent witness and knower of all your thoughts? Let's check it out in one short, sweet minute!

Find a quiet place. Sit in a comfortable position with spine tall, but not tense. If a chair is more comfortable, you can sit tall with feet on the floor. Support the low back with a pillow if needed. Close your eyes. Bring yourself into the present moment. Become aware of your body and surroundings.

Take a few deep sighs. Observe, and then regulate your breath by rhythmic, deep, slow inhales and exhales. Allow the mind to wander at first. Focus at the brow point, the navel or the heart center where the mind can rest. When the mind drifts, bring it back to the breath, which brings you into the present moment.

Start with this practice for one minute a day for a week. Even if your mind isn't calm during the meditation, notice the effects after a daily practice. Increase this simple practice to 3 minutes and then 5 minutes and keep going! Stay patient and consistent and you will find you will anchor your life with a daily meditation practice. Living in the moment only takes a moment!

One Moment Meditation Video and Breath Awareness Exercise

Stacie Dooreck (Saraswati)
Certified Sivananda and Kundalini Yoga Instructor
www.sunlightyoga.com

Recommended: Meditation Secrets: Ultimate Beginner's Guide by Matt Le Tutla and The Sivananda Companion to Yoga by Sivananda Yoga Center

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