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Meditation 101

Meditation 101
We all know that meditation, mindfulness and getting in touch with our inner selves is a good thing, after all - a healthy mind and a healthy body go hand in hand. Meditating can be daunting, especially without much prior knowledge. Think of this as a Nonna Diary crash course in meditation. We’re going to talk about the benefits of meditation and mindfulness, recommend some great resources for guided meditation and discuss how to make meditation work for you in the long term.

 

Guided Meditation

Regular meditation has been proven to significantly reduce stress and anxiety, increase self awareness and emotional health. Studies also show that meditation can increase our attention span and reduce age related memory loss. Mediation can also lower blood pressure and help you to improve your sleep pattern. Sounds good, right? Guided meditation apps and podcasts are a great way to start. Calm is a guided meditation app that helps with meditation and sleep. Sessions on Calm are typically around 10 minutes and the app tailors a program especially for you. The app costs €60 annually, but some of the guided meditations are free.

If you’re not looking to spend that much money, there are some great guided meditation accounts on Spotify. Our personal favorite is the Daily Meditation Podcast by Declutter the Mind. The episodes are very specifically titled, for example - ‘Meditation for Those Who Can’t Sit Still and Fidget” and ‘Mediation for People in a Hurry”. This means that you’re sure to find a guided mindfulness meditation to suit you, your mood and your circumstances.

Meditation Throughout The Day

You can integrate mediation into your life on much smaller levels also. For example, try this if you're feeling a little stressed out and overwhelmed at work. Sit in your chair with both feet on the floor. Sit up straight with your palms on your knees. Try to clear your mind as best you can. Breath in for four counts, hold this breath for four counts and exhale for four counts. Repeat this process until you begin to feel more centered and grounded. Scrunch up your shoulders for three seconds, then release. As you release the tension from your shoulders, imagine you are releasing all of the stress and worries that you were carrying in your shoulders. This is a great little self-care tool to have in your back pocket for when things get to be a little too much.

The main thing to remember about meditation is that there is no right or wrong. It’s all about centering yourself in whatever ways work best for you. Meditation can take up as much time as you feel is necessary - from sixty seconds to an hour. In order to benefit from meditation, it’s crucial that it fits in around your life, otherwise it's not sustainable. It should feel like a little self-care treat, not a chore!

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