Meditation has been one of the most important habits I have cultivated to help me with my depression and anxiety. This is where all my self-love and self-care started and I believe It is the most important part of the balanced life. This is how I beat my daily dose of night panic attacks and how I started building a healthy sense of self. It has been a key to get rid of my death anxiety. It brought me a deeper understanding and helps me every day in a road to manifest my best reality.
WHAT IS MEDITATION?
What is meditation? I think this Buddhist monk will explain it to you better than I could ever do it. All the meditation really is, it’s just the rest of the mind while being fully awake and alert. Yes, it’s that simple. Nothing else to it.
WHY SHOULD YOU TAKE UP MEDITATION?
I used to have awful panic attacks – every single night, it would hit me – whatever trigger would be fight with my partner, struggle with the negative people in my life or even death anxiety (In which I lost so much weight, cause I would be fascinated with the subject to the point where I would just stay up all night, get so invested in the research of mortality). My miracle cure turned out to be meditation and mindfulness.
I started meditating a few years ago, but I took it seriously about 8 or 9 months ago. It is true, what people say – it works, but you have to be committed and consistent. It didn’t work much, back when I first started, because I wasn’t doing it every day, I wasn’t too committed and I didn’t take it seriously. But now, It has had such an impact in my life because I have been doing it properly. I take special care to wake up a bit early and make sure I don’t fall asleep during it. It gives me amazing insight to my inner feelings and thoughts, it keeps me calm during the day and I feel amazing after a session.
So, without further ado, let’s get into this little guide I have put together for anyone that wants to learn about meditation and how to get down to it. Or just try it out.
START WITH AN APP
This is exactly how I started and from experience it honestly I think it’s the easiest thing to do as it’s not only a guided meditation (which is brilliant for beginners) but also it’s so easy to track How often you are meditating. My recommendations are:
CALM – This is my preferred choice. I like the meditations, It has some of the nicest views and nature sounds. I just wish there would have more of the free features.
HEADSPACE – Headspace is the app I have started with originally. As I have uncovered before I have dropped meditation after few first attempts. It didn’t really suck me in, I just don’t find it that good. Plus, it’s paid.
BREATHE – A very nifty one. This one is cool because you have to fill in a mini-questionnaire before you start, to assess what kind of meditation or breathing exercise you will need on a particular day. It’s great for tracking your everyday feelings and how well you are doing emotionally. I gotta say – I’m not the fan of voices that guide meditation. Just don’t find them too relaxing and that’s the only reason why it’s not my favorite one, because even though all the cool additional features are just not worth it if the guided meditations themselves are not that great.
DIGIPILL – It’s a nice one, because of how many different guided meditations it has, although I just find the guys voice a bit too deep for my liking.
Like you can see, there’s so many to choose from, there’s probably more to be fair, but those are the ones I have checked out.
ALWAYS START WITH GUIDED MEDITATION
There’s plenty of those on youtube to choose from. I like them at the beginning stages of learning to meditate and staying committed to it. Not sure about you, but without having a voice or at least music there, somewhere, I would fall asleep. I know, it’s terrible but tell me I’m not the only one! Please! Haha, No, don’t worry I don’t really beat myself for that – I think it just signifies that I relax so deeply, just like with the good massage or good facial.
The ones I recommend are:
BOB PROCTOR – this one is very helpful, especially if you want to break your money blocks at the same time, which is a key to any financial success. Although, it’s not really about that, it is helpful to everyday life. This one is my favorite.
DELILAH HELTON – another good one I have found by total coincidence when looking for mind clearing meditation. I really loved it. It relaxed me, left me peaceful and worked like a charm for my overworked then mind. My favorite ones are Mind clarity one and Nighttime Stop Worrying Meditation.
LOUISE HAY – Absolute pioneer of the self-growth. Such an amazing woman. My favorite meditation is the evening one for sure. You can listen to it here.
THE HONEST GUYS – Youtube favorites – I really like them, Not using them as much, but my boyfriend completely hated it, so I guess it’s a bit of a love/hate one. Try for yourself here.
PROGRESSING TO MEDITATING ON YOUR OWN
Some people actually prefer to start with meditating on their own. Some progress to it. I have progressed to it after 3 months of meditating with guided recordings every single day. You can do it either with open eyes or closed eyes, it doesn’t matter. I recommend starting with closed eyes, although if you are tired or sleepy definitely do It with open eyes. so, I guess the official guide goes like this:
- Find a comfortable space to sit down, where you cannot be disturbed and it’s quiet enough for you to rest.
- (Optional) Gently place your tongue on the roof of your mouth. This connects two energy channels in your body, which, once linked create a balanced flow of energy through your body.
- then, with your eyes either open (soft gaze) or closed, inhale slowly, deeply and fully through your nose with the intention of filling your belly and lower back first, then your chest, upper back, and shoulders. You might even take the deeper plunge and fill your throat and head along the way. Exhale slow and gently out through your nose.
- If your nose is clogged, you can do it with your mouth, but I think Breathing through your nose is much more effective.
- When you notice your mind is wandering while you are meditating, please simply say ‘thinking’ to yourself and then bring your attention and your awareness back to your breath. When you find yourself thinking about anyone or anything, please, just bring your focus back to inhaling and don’t judge yourself.
- Never fight or resist any of your thoughts or emotions. Simply and kindly say ‘thinking’ and shift your attention back to your practice.
- Give yourself permission to let go and relax. Allow the body to open and release any stress and tension you’re holding. Your breath will melt it away and heal any blocks you have accumulated in your body.
- You can repeat this practice as often as you want or can. And as you have seen, you can do it anywhere. It’s quiet and discreet.
I recommend using some Binaural Beats or Meditation Music in the background. This one, that one and this one are my favorites. Another really good video to check out all about meditation is this one from actualized.org.
MYTHS ABOUT MEDITATION
There’s definitely some myths flying around about meditation, which is so not true, but sometimes they can discourage people from even trying to take it up. Even though, statistically it is one of the most effective things you can do to ease your depression episode (Even more effective than medication!).
YOU CAN DO IT ANYWHERE – You just need a quiet place. It could be a sleepy bus in the morning or a bubble bath. It just about not thinking. About not actively thinking, breathing and about not using your monkey brain.
It’s NOT religious – You don’t have to be a Hinduism practitioner or Buddhist to take up meditation. It’s just like you don’t have to be a practitioner of Hinduism to take up yoga. It could be a religious act, but it doesn’t have to.
It’s NOT spiritual – As much as it doesn’t have to be religious, it also doesn’t have to be spiritual. It’s just an act of self-love and quieting down your busy brain. It could be spiritual, but it doesn’t have to.
Just a couple of loose tips to make this thing work and see real results in the shortest amount of time.
STAY CONSISTENT – It won’t work otherwise. It has to be done every day. Not nearly everyday – every day. This is the only way to go and this is how you will take the full advantages of the act of your practice. Why don’t you make it a habit? For more tips about it:
KNOW YOUR WHY – For me, in order to stay motivated I need to know why I’m doing it in the first place. And I can assure you – meditation is absolutely essential to any self-development, so if you want to get on board of the self-growth train, you will have to take it up – sooner or later.
IT’S NOT A MEDITATION IF YOU ARE TRYING TO HARD – another thing, that people forget is that it’s not a true act of meditation when you are trying too hard to stay focused on meditating. You are supposed to let go. Don’t stress it, don’t take it as a chore. Just let go.
Thank you for taking a chance and reading this blog post. If you suffer from anxiety, anxiety attacks, and depression and haven’t tried meditation yet, please do give it a try. This is how I banished a large portion of stress and suffering from my life and I just want to spread the word as I know first hand how much of the baggage it is to drag your depression and anxiety around with you on the daily basis. Been there, done that.
Please, let me know if you are practicing, or if you want to start, or where are you in your practice. I’d Love to hear from you all about what you would like to read on my blog and if you like the posts. Please, let me know in the comments or if the matter is more private, feel free to contact me using my contact form here. I respond to all the emails I get.