Meditation has many benefits. It reduces depression, increases awareness, lowers blood pressure, and makes you feel fresh and beautiful. People who meditate regularly handle stress better and live longer. Studies have shown that stress can cause a variety of physiological and physical problems such as insomnia, anxiety, weakened immunity, etc. There is however, increasing evidence that if we can reduce stress in our lives, we can improve our mental and physical health. Thus meditation is the means by which you can reduce stress in your life.
Getting Started
First, find a quiet place where no one can disturb you. Switch off your cell phone, and stop worrying about the outside world.
You can either sit on a chair, or lie flat on your back with your arms on your side. If you sit in a chair, you should sit up straight so that your spinal cord is perpendicular to the floor. However, more experienced practitioners suggest sitting in a comfortable position rather than lying down. This is because if you are too relaxed, you might fall asleep.
Sit comfortably, with your eyes shut. You might want to start with 5 minutes at first, gradually building up to 20 minutes, twice a day.
Ways of Meditating
Now that you have seated yourself in a good posture, you should take deep breaths to relax. Start counting these breaths. Count an inhale and exhale as one, the next inhale and exhale as two. When you get to four, start over with one and so on. This will keep you focused, and your mind will not wander. Although it's rather difficult to keep a blank mind, you need to have one. This of course comes with practice, and once you master it, it's just minutes before you are totally stress-free!
Concentrate on your breathing, as much as you can, because the objective of meditating is to clear your mind. You will notice that the more you try to clear your mind, the harder it will be. Do not try too hard. Instead of trying to fight your thoughts, just let them flow through your mind. Whenever you find that your mind is wandering after a passing thought, escort your attention back to your breathing. Keeping your mind clear is not easy. A lot of thoughts will come in. That is the nature of the mind, and you have to control it.
When your time is up, sit quietly for a few seconds. Gently stretch your fingers and toes, and get up slowly. Now enjoy the relaxed feeling of inner peace as you go about your day. You'll have a whole new outlook on life.