Photo/ Danielle Dentremont
Meditation: social influencers are doing it, monks have done it for centuries and if you are reading this you are probably wondering how people do it. Basically, meditation is a process where someone sits on a couch or cushion and does nothing for a period of time. Yes, you heard that right, nothing, absolutely nothing. You must be thinking: why would I sit on a cushion and do nothing for a half hour? Well, meditation has been used for eons in human history to quell uneasy minds and to alleviate the stress induced by daily life. Also, there is evidence to suggest that meditation can reduce the effects of depression, anxiety and even heart disease. In this article, I am going to give a quick instruction for how to meditate anywhere and anytime—yes, I know that I sound like a lifestyle guru.
First, find somewhere that allows for you to get away from people, which is pretty easy considering the events in the last year. Now that you have found a quiet place to meditate, find a cushion, or a place to sit. Pull out your iPhone, iPod or, if you are into it, your Android (I am afraid I cannot place the vomit emoji in articles). Log onto Apple Music, Spotify or any service that will let you stream music and find a playlist of songs for relaxation. Preferably, I would just search “spa music” and click the first option to appear. Set a timer for five to twenty minutes, or however long you will think you need.
Second (this is usually the hard part for most people), you will have to sit in place and allow yourself to be alone with your thoughts. Now, this may sound hard, but like any “trustworthy” lifestyle guru that promotes rituals that can spark astronomical changes in your life, you will need to trust me on this. Do nothing, let your thoughts ruminate, however negative, stupid, idiotic or concerning they are. Let your thoughts exist, yet fail to preoccupy your mind with them. Now, you are probably confused as to what I mean by this. I am asking you to think, yet fail to give your thoughts any attention. For example, I am having a bad day so I decide to meditate: I start meditating and do all of those good breathing exercises (we will talk about those later), and my negative thoughts start to linger. Let these thoughts exist and let them enter the later stages of their half-lives. I know I sound like a chemist, but think of your thoughts as chemical compounds that will disintegrate slowly from your mind.
Second, breathe. Just breathe. I am talking about a steady flow of breaths in and breaths out. Personally, I like to take a breath in through my nose and exhale through my mouth. You can breathe at any pace you want to, just make sure that you are not “huffing and puffing” like a big bad wolf that is about to make a family of pigs homeless.
Third, stop reading this article and meditate.