Embrace calmness through meditation, says RAJIV PARTI
good way to embrace calmness is through meditation, which wields the calming influence of Spirit. Not only can meditation reduce stress directly, it can also help create the quiet, reflective mental environment that enables you to better contemplate spiritual ideas and principles. There are various kinds of meditation. The one I am explaining here may be termed ‘sitting meditation’ and is expressly designed to tone down your mind’s chatter, calm your body, and help you create a more peaceful approach to life’s ups and downs.
It counteracts stress response by promoting a relaxation response that restores your body’s natural balance. Here is a simple procedure that can get you meditating right away:
- Choose a word or short phrase that means something to you, such as ‘love’ or ‘life is great’. This is your focus word or phrase.
- In a quiet room, assume a comfortable sitting position on a straight-backed chair or, if you prefer, sit cross-legged on the floor with your back straight. Make sure the room temperature is comfortable, not too warm or cool. Rest your hands comfortably in your lap.
- Now close your eyes and breathe slowly in and out through your nose. Allow the air to go deep into your diaphragm, expanding your belly, and then breathe out — slowly, in and out, taking nice deep breaths.
- As you inhale and exhale, don’t think of anything, just feel the movements of your chest and diaphragm, back and forth, back and forth. Each time you exhale, repeat silently to yourself your focus word or phrase.
- Maintain an accepting attitude towards what you are doing and don’t worry whether you are doing it right. If thoughts enter your mind, say to yourself something like, ‘it’s okay’ or ‘don’t worry’ and let the thoughts drift away.
- Go back to simply experiencing your breathing movements, repeating your focus item each time you exhale.
- When you feel that it is time to end the session, sit quietly, eyes closed, for a minute. Let other thoughts enter your mind naturally. Then open your eyes and sit calmly for another minute before rising.
This kind of meditation can help treat a range of stress-related disorders. Daily meditation for 15 to 30 minutes in the morning can reduce stress throughout the day. It may take time to build up to that time span. You may want to start by meditating for five or 10 minutes and then add more time as you become more comfortable with the procedure.
Meditation is a wonderful way to counteract stress and meditating for ten to 30 minutes at a certain time each day, perhaps in the morning, can have salutary effects. But meditation can also be done on short notice, and for only a minute or two, perhaps even at your workplace. This is mini-meditation, and it, too, can help you relax and counteract stress.
Reset Your Mind
Mini-meditation is similar to regular meditation but takes less time. For example, if you are sitting in your office and need to reset your mind and body owing to stress, begin by making yourself comfortable and as far as possible, block out extraneous noise. Then close your eyes and begin breathing in and out deeply and rhythmically. While you do this, focus your experience on the movements of your chest and diaphragm.
Feel how your chest and belly expand as you inhale and deflate as you exhale. Each time you exhale, silently say to yourself your focus word or phrase. Do this for a set number of breaths, perhaps a dozen or so, or for a minute or more. When you feel you are done, sit quietly for a moment with your eyes closed. Then open your eyes and feel the refreshing sense of calmness that came through mini-meditation. You should only have to do this a few times before it becomes a natural tool that you can use to counteract stress and calm your thought processes. Feeling At Ease With yourself, Konark Publishers