yogafire

Meditation Techniques For A New, Individual Practice?

28 posts in this topic

The two types of meditation that work best for me is slackline Yoga and Counting the breath.   I've tried many other techniques but, usually end up getting super impatient or have a hard time staying focused.

With slackline yoga you have to be present the entire time, the moment your mind starts wandering you will know instantly because you'll come off the line.  It's really an incredible practice for stilling the mind, finding focus and balance.  Here's an intro video to slackline yoga if interested.  

   Here are my two favorite counting the breath meditations to create peace and focus:

1.  Erich Schiffman-counting down backwards from 50

2.  Thich Nhat Hahn Counting Your Breath:  Making your breath calm and even is called the method of following one’s breath. If it seems hard you can first begin by counting your breath. As you breathe in, count 1 in your mind, and as your breathe out count 1 and so forth. Continue through 10 and return to 1 again. This counting is like a string which attaches your mindfulness to your breath. The exercise is the beginning point of becoming completely conscious of your breath. Without mindfulness you will lose count. Once you have reached a point where you can truly focus your attention on the counts, you have reached the point where you can abandon the counting method and concentrate solely on the breath itself.

Also, any of Thich Nhat Hahn's books are excellent if you are wanting to learn more about mindfullness and meditation.  They are simple to understand and delightful to read.

As mentioned previously a good way to make it consistent is to sit for a realistic amount of time.  For most of us five minutes is doable.  Commit to doing meditation for five minutes each day for a week at a set time everyday (I prefer first thing in the morning when I wake up) and see how it goes.  

Of course, try the suggestions you are most drawn to for meditation in this thread for yourself.  And decide which works best for your needs.

Edited by kcharts

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I'm glad that this topic got started again , because then I saw it! There are a lot of awesome tips in here that I hope to return to. 

Things that worked for me:

Counting the number of breaths. If I lose count I start over at 1. 

Guided meditation

Chakra meditation

I made my own meditation beads as well and I count those!

 

I can only seem to meditate in savasana because that's where I'm most comfortable. I also like to do it before I sleep to calm my mind. But I heard once that it shouldn't be done before sleep. Does anyone know the right answer for this?

yogafire likes this

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Thought I'd share some fun things I learned after attending a meditation class led by a Tibetan monk (who lives in the US now).  Our instructor was so approachable, and yes, he's an experienced practitioner, but attributed it from daily habit since he was young (grew up in a temple). He was so easy going about it that I felt more relaxed to just try it out and not try to overthink specific techniques, like I have been trying in the past.

Interesting things I learned from my instructor:

  • You can meditate with your eyes open - ideally a soft gaze down your nose
    • He explained that's why he always meditates at temple - if he meditates at home, he starts noticing which pictures are misaligned and that distracts him!
    • When we were in Thailand, I asked my husband if I should check out a temple he just came out of that.  He said, "No, it was super awkward because there was no one else there, and a monk was sitting there, staring at me and meditating with his eyes wide open!" Unfortunately, I didn't check it out myself, but, this instruction reminded me of this event and made me laugh inside.
  • Tibetan and Buddhist monks also chant in Sanskrit during meditation, even if they're Chinese speakers. I thought that was lovely - a universal language.
  • Asana and meditation seem to go together naturally - one will want to do more of whatever he or she is not already doing. For instance, in this thread it sounds like there are people like myself who practice asana more regularly than meditation, but want to meditate more.  Our instructor revealed that even though he meditates 1.5 hours a day, he wants to do more yoga, and really feels good after classes. I was ignorant - it never dawned on me that it would go the other way - monks also enjoy the everyday yoga studio!

Note: this is all based on one guy, so, the last point doesn't apply to everyone!

msinkblot likes this

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