When and How to Meditate
Once you have decided to invest your time and effort into learning how to meditate, it is also important to decide on the when and the how of meditation. Meditation will offer many benefits in the areas of health, concentration, stress, anxiety, and joy. Setting aside a committed time is a very important component of meditation. Making sure that everyone respects your commitment is also vital to the success of your meditation experience. Make a Commitment The first and probably the most important aspect of beginning meditation is to commit wholeheartedly from the outset. When you speak of meditation, let everyone know that you are going to meditate as part of your routine. Do not say that you are going to “try” meditation; that will only set you up for an easy escape from the beginning. Make sure that your words and actions are aligned with the commitment to meditate. Pick a Time Pick a time of day or night and make a commitment to stick to that time and date. Make sure that you choose a time that will always be convenient for you without any disruptions. If that means locking yourself in your room for a period of time before bedtime, get a sign that says that meditation is in practice and do not disturb. If you choose to practice meditation in the morning, get up a few minutes earlier every day to begin meditation. How Often When you first begin to meditate, keep your expectations in check. Start off slowly and increase the time gradually. In this manner, you will not start off on too high a level with too many expectations and then you will not be disappointed. Give it some time. Start off with 15-minute intervals each morning. Morning is best because your body has not fully awakened to the stressors of the day. Thereafter, when you begin to see the rewards of meditation, you will be able to increase and adjust your schedule accordingly. Posture Another important aspect of meditation is your posture. A pose that is too rigid or too loose will diminish the meditation experience. Sit with your spine upright, but not too stiff. Sit on the floor on a comfortable blanket or mat. Make sure that your neck is straight and your shoulders are not slouched, but remember to relax your arms and legs. It may take some time to adjust your position, but over time, you will realize what the right position is once you have experimented. Do not expect to be miraculously transformed in the beginning. Meditation - just like anything else - takes time, patience, and practice.