Meditation for self-care
What is the most requested style of class that I have received as an Activ Life yoga teacher in the last three months? Meditation.
In my last blog I touched on meditation and the ability to incorporate one minute into your daily routine. Why is this important? Just 10 minutes a day could change your life.
Incorporating this simple self-care exercise into your bedtime schedule can transform your relationship to yourself, to others and the world around you. It can cover you in a blanket of calm and comfort, and heaven knows, we could all do with a big hug right now.
If you've been confused by mediation in the past, you're not alone. Mediation can be hard to define. It's difficult to know what to expect, because for everyone, the experience will be different. The sensations, visuals and emotions that rise to the surface will vary every time you move into a state of meditation.
If you're new to meditation, find a comfortable seated position, perhaps raised slightly on a cushion or blanket. You can lean up against a wall or lie in bed if you've brushed your teeth. Now focus your attention on your breath. Listen to your breath. Feel the coolness of the air as it enters you nostrils, and the warmth as it exists the body. Feel your diaphragm rise as you inhale, and release as you exhale. Slowly count as you inhale, and slowly count back down as you exhale.
While the practice of meditation dates back centuries, it has recently gained a newfound popularity. Why the sudden popularity boom? Meditation is accessible to everyone and can be tailored to accommodate a variety of time constraints, demanding responsibilities, physical disabilities, and lack of space.
Meditating can not only reduce growing anxiety in a volatile world haunted by Covid-19, it can also stimulate creativity. When you focus on the present, the sounds of the sea, the scent of candles, the sensations of sunlight on your fingertips, sand on your toes (especially if you live in the Cayman Islands) and a gentle breeze on your face, all other outside distractions that blur clarity, disappear. This opens up a large doorway of opportunity to harness ideas and build empires.
Whether you choose zen meditation practiced in seated position with eyes closed, a guided visualisation where you imagine a desired outcome, transcendental meditation that encourages use of a mantra, or mindfulness meditation that allows you to fully experience the present by focusing on various tasks in your day, this is the most inexpensive and accessible self-care available.
Give it a go now. Try the 10-count meditation. Count each in and out breath until you reach 10 and then start over again. You may lose count, but it’s so easy to just start over and start to train your brain to not wander off. Even when you think you don’t have time to do it, sitting for just 5 minutes, can be a reset button for the whole day.
View our guided meditations in the Activ Life Online Studio.
Happy New Year!
Louise FitzRoy is the Principal of Activ Life, a leading health and wellness company based in the Cayman Islands. If you enjoyed this article you may also like: 3 New Year's yoga resolutions and Stress less with this one mindful step.