Living mindfully opens up a whole new world of awareness. This mindfulness meditation technique is very easy to learn and will bring many rewards.
Mindfulness was the first formal meditation technique that I learned and used. I was shown how to meditate in this way by members of our local Buddhist community, who were so kind as to hold free meditation lessons each week. But this meditation is for anybody, and it does not need to have any spiritual significance for you to gain the benefits.
Obviously, the more you practice meditation, the more effective you will become and the benefits you experience will be greater.
But everyone has to start somewhere, so let's get to it!
Mindfulness meditation could be described as an observation meditation technique, where we don't really 'do' anything. The process is a very passive one where we notice things, but we choose not to react to them.
We notice our thoughts as they come in and the feelings that arise, but we just observe them without judgement and let them drift away. We notice external sounds and other distractions, but we do not react to them.
We let go of our analytical mind and just allow ourselves to be in the present moment. This brings with it clarity, insight and peace.
Get yourself ready by finding a quiet and comfortable spot where you can be assured of no interruptions. Be seated in a comfortable chair with your back straight and your feet flat on the floor. If for physical reasons you need to recline then do so.
If you prefer to sit cross-legged on the floor this is okay but just make sure you can stay comfortable, with your back straight.
Loosen any tight clothing and you might like to take off your shoes.
Begin by allowing yourself to relax. Close your eyes and take some slow, deep breaths into your abdomen. Feel the muscles in your body loosen, especially the ones around your face, neck and shoulders. Now allow yourself to breathe naturally.
Use your breath as a focus to keep you anchored in the present moment. Just observe your breath and notice something about it. It could be the feeling of the air flowing through your nose, or the expansion and contraction of your lungs.
Just keep your attention on your chosen aspect of the breath, but don't try too hard. You should not be concentrating, just gently focusing.
Thoughts and images will come into your mind. Notice and acknowledge their presence, and then just let them drift on by. Do not hang on to them, or judge them in any way. Just notice when you have a thought and then gently go back to noticing the breath.
You may also be aware of outside noises. Do not react to these or start an inner dialogue. Allow them to be and then go back to the breath.
If you find yourself having a lot of thoughts, and you probably will in the beginning, do not get angry or frustrated with yourself. This is about allowing yourself to 'be' and allowing whatever comes, without judgement or reaction.
Spend approximately 20 minutes being mindful in this way. When you are finished, sit quietly with your eyes still closed for about two minutes, to allow yourself to return to normal consciousness before going about your day.
Write down notes of any insights or other experiences you may have had, however do not feel disappointed if you don't have anything to write.
No matter what happens, your meditation has been successful, even if you had many thoughts. The fact that you just let them drift away means that you have benefited from this meditation.
When you are new to meditation you can be bombarded with many thoughts and feelings, but this is all part of the journey. Just accept and allow this as part of the experience, and gradually they will begin to subside and you will experience more quiet during your meditation.
Emotional release is an important part of meditation, so don't fight it. Click here to learn more about the emotional release that you may experience during your mindful meditation.
If you continue to practice mindfulness meditation on a daily basis, you will begin to experience your reality from a whole new perspective.You will achieve greater self awareness and begin to let go of your negative beliefs and judgements. You will notice your true nature, and the true nature of the world around you.
Like to try some other easy types of meditation? Click on my links below:
For more on how to meditate for beginners, such as where, how often, etc. please click here.