Forget your preconceived expectations about meditation
Meditation has been characterized by a cross-legged person, in perfect harmony, transcended into some altered state. If you expect to achieve that on your first try, you are going to be disappointed. Perhaps mastering meditation will get you there, but rest assured it won’t happen on a first try.
It’s important to manage your expectations. Putting pressure on yourself that meditation must be a certain way goes against the whole idea of meditating. Accept what is and what is not.
Allow yourself to feel, to think to experience and don’t try to force any particular outcome.
Meditation can be nothing more than a few quiet moments of deep breathing.
Don’t expect your mind to be free of thought
I had read that authors or inventors were enlightened with their best ideas while meditating and that these ideas came in visions. Perhaps like me, you have also assumed that your mind would become a blank slate in meditation. The truth is, thoughts will come and go during meditation and fighting them will actually close you off. It is better to acknowledge the thoughts that enter your mind and then find a way to go back to the intention of your meditation. We’ll look at this in more depth in future posts.
Guided meditations are a great place to start
There are numerous resources to help you get started meditating. Classes are often offered free of charge in many communities; books, DVDs and CDs are wonderful sources of education. If you are just dipping your toes into the waters of meditation, a great way to introduce yourself to the idea is through guided meditations. Guided meditations help you to breathe deliberately and freely, to let go of needing to control the outcome; they help you to ease into meditation. YouTube is a great resource.
Here’s a great resource to help you begin: How to Meditate: A Powerful One-Minute Meditation with Natalie MacNeil
This short video introduces viewers to the importance of breathing and introduced the idea of an I am Mantra. This quick video is a relaxing, brief intro to get you started and it doesn’t require any special positions or equipment. I encourage you to give it a try!