In the last Self Care blog, I not only talked about mindfulness but also put out a quest for you to monitor your daily thoughts throughout the day and record these thoughts each evening over the course of two weeks. If you were able to do this every day, you are a dedicated and devoted person of practice, congratulations. Even if you tried it a couple of times, this is still a great outcome. It can take quite a while to get into a regular meditation routine so don’t beat yourself up if you don’t get it perfect, there is no perfect. It takes great patience to train the mind.
If you are truly wanting to break free of the confines of your own mind, following this six-week series will be a great way to get into a regular practice. Each fortnight there will be a short mindfulness vlog for you to access via YouTube which will also prompt you to practice over the following two weeks until the next vlog comes out.
Today I have chosen breath work as the first mindfulness sessions as it’s one of easiest places to hold our attention. We breath in, we breath out. We don’t need to rely on something outside of ourselves to assist us with this practice as long as we are alive, we have our breath. It won’t leave us or switch off, giving us one of the best methods to start our mindfulness practice.
Be patient and kind to yourself, sometimes the stuff that arises when sitting in mindfulness can be heavy. This can be due to multiple reasons however in this circumstance, take a break and come back to it when you’re ready. If you feel like you need more support with this, I am available for 1.1 phone/online mentoring to assist you on your journey. Otherwise consult your Dr/medical profession if you are unsure.
Before we get stuck straight into the meditation there are some handy hints to take you through first.
Inform others in the household (if any) you will be busy for the next 10 minutes or so
Turn off phone/electrical items such as tv/radio etc (As you get used to the practice of mindfulness it’s a good idea to start the least distractions possible.)
Find a comfortable, quiet space, ensure you have taken care of bodily distractions ie drank a little water, used the bathroom etc
Now to prepare your body for the practice
Everyone has different needs and what is right for one person may not be right for another.
The first method which really supports the back is by sitting in a chair with a backing, back straight, feet planted evenly on the floor, head is in alignment with the spine
Be seated on the floor with a cushion/meditation chair/large rolled up towels (ensuring that your buttocks is higher than hips which allows your back to be supported)
Lie down on the floor with a cushion under your neck and under your knees if you have any back problems.
If cool, wrap a blanket over yourself and make sure you are comfortable
Here are some things to keep in mind after the meditation.
Have a drink of water
Journal your experience. You might like to add how you felt before, during and after the meditation practice.
Slowly transition back into daily routines
Click on the link for the vlog (meditation is 2 mins in)
The next quest I have for you is to set aside a little time each day, 30 seconds or 30 minutes. How long you decide to meditate will depend on how much time you have available. I would start with 5-10 minutes if you have never meditated before.
Dedicate a space and time in which you can sit and breath. Thoughts will continue to come and that’s perfectly ok. The aim is to not push these thoughts away, the aim is to allow them to be in the background without being drawn into each and every thought that we have. However, I will cover a little more of this each fortnight as we go along.
If you choose to journal your experience, you will have questions which is great! Feel free to leave me a comment with any questions you may have and I can try and answer these in the following vlog.
Remember to breath!