A Day in the Life of a Meditation Guru
Many people think that personal peace is this out-there, unattainable notion, that it is for practiced monks, devout yogis or dedicated practitioners of Eastern medicine. Have you ever taken the time to explore this on your own, suspending judgement and just making a small effort to test these preconceived notions?
I encourage you to suspend judgement for ten minutes a day and simply observe what happens.
There are many methods for clearing out negative energy from the mind and promoting positive thinking and personal peace, meditation is one of them. Being able to calm the mind can be a challenge, but with practice, it will become second nature and you will find that much of your life is intertwined with the outlook of a relaxed, meditative state.
The key to reaping the benefits of meditation is to try and incorporate it into your life in a repetitive nature. You can do one meditation and feel great immediately after, but then get right back into your regular routine and negativity begins to sneak its way back in. If you are consistent with the meditations, it becomes routine and you begin to see aspects of your meditation practice filter their way into your daily life.
Here is a short and effective meditation to work on clearing out some
negative emotions and promoting a sense of peace:
1. Sit wherever you are, home, office, airplane, car (passenger or back seat only, no driving and meditating!). Place your hands on your knees or in your lap. You can place your hands in the “gian mudra” position by letting the backs of your hands rest on your knees and connecting your thumb and index finger on both hands. However, none of this is necessary or required. Just be comfortable.
2. Recognize how you are feeling. In this instance, recognize any negative emotions or feelings floating around in your mind or body. Pinpoint where you feel that negative feeling in your body and calmly observe it in a non-judgmental manner. Let it be and know that it is okay to be experiencing this negativity; it is completely normal.
3. As you begin to take inventory of how you feel in your mind and body, take some slow, deep breaths. Feel the breath make its way into your nose, all the way down your throat, into your chest and down into your core, swirling back up and out through your mouth. Begin to feel the breath in your body and listen to it as it comes in and goes out without much effort at all.
4. Breathe into the spot in your body where you feel the negative feeling. For example, if you feel anxiety or stress in your chest, take a deep breath and feel it flow through your chest. Allow the uncomfortable feeling to be there. Sometimes it’s even useful in the instance of experiencing anxiety to welcome it, using a “bring it on” mentality. Let it come and welcome the negative feeling warmly. Allow yourself to feel it and do not attempt to fight it.
5. Whenever your mind starts to wander, allow your mind to go back to your breath, listening to the sound of it and feeling it as it enters and leaves your body. It’s completely normal to have several thoughts swirling around as you’re trying to focus on your meditation, let them be there, just observe them.. A good way to handle thoughts during a meditation is to simply recognize them, accept them, sit with them and then release them, picturing them as clouds floating by in the sky or stones in a stream.
6. Finally, sit and just be. Continue to breathe, listening to each breath and feeling it in your body. Practice acceptance of the negative feelings, watch them come and go and know that all is well and that you can breathe through anything that life throws at you.
Practical day to day tip for meditation: When you’re getting started with this and trying to work this into your routine, use your phone timer for help. Start by setting your phone timer for 10 minutes either first thing in the morning before you start your day or right at the end of it. This way, you’re carving the time out, you know how long it will last and you’re doing it at a time where you have the 10 minutes to spare. As you continue the routine, you may increase your time or do it sporadically throughout your day where time permits. Another great tip is to download a meditation app. One that has come in handy for me is the “Stop, Breathe & Think” app. This app has guided meditations but also has a meditation timer for a more “free style” form of meditation.
You’ll find that with regular practice of these simple meditation tips and instructions, you may better handle negative feelings. You won’t be so hard on yourself when you start to feel bad about something and you will begin to have a healthier relationship with the negativity that sometimes permeates your day. You can begin to accept things as they are and the struggle of control will lose it’s luster as you surrender to life as it is. It is liberating and can change your human experience for the better. Following this routine will teach you to practice acceptance — in meditation and out of meditation — in your daily life.
Danielle contributed a version of this article with YogiApproved.com