Meditation: Meditation Types, Benefits And Tips For Beginners

Close your eyes and imagine it’s night time, somewhere around 9 pm and it has just rained. You went out because you like the smell of the Earth after the rain. Now, you’re out because you also wanted to take a mindful walk. Everything looks so peaceful, and you’re enjoying your walk. You make your mind to be aware of the surroundings, your body, and breaths. The present is the only awareness you have now.

Have you done this before? It pretty much sums up my definition of meditation. Meditation itself is a general buzzword like the word sport, as there are different types of meditation practiced by millions of people around the world. Some even associate meditation with yoga, since yogis practiced it a thousand years ago — others with religious leaders such as Buddhist monks or spiritualist. However, meditation has a single purpose, no matter how they call or who practices it – to improve our wellbeing and life. Backed up by science as well, meditation has proven to bring many benefits to regular practitioners. To learn more about meditation benefits, steps on how to start meditating, and the different types of meditation, scroll down this article.

Meditation

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Meditation Benefits

According to different research, one of the main reasons people practice meditation is to reduce stress and control anxiety. As meditation helps you to be aware of every thought that comes into your mind, if you regularly meditate, you will be able to identify negative thoughts and keep your mind calm. Therefore, your stress and anxiety levels will be reduced and even the quality of your sleep will improve.

Another important benefit of meditation is that it helps people manage physical pain. Notably, there is one type of meditation known as mindfulness that many doctors recommend to the patients suffering chronic pain. Meditation among other benefits also develops self-awareness, generates positive feelings and increases focus. As life is becoming more hectic day by day, being self-aware in everything we do helps us to increase productivity and be more effective. Also, there is a special type of meditation named loving-kindness meditation that aims to develop empathy and positive feelings in ourselves and others.

 

Meditation For Beginners

The good thing about meditation is that you can perform it in the comfort of your home. If you are a beginner to meditation there are some tips that you can follow to learn the procedure. First of all, you don’t always need to say various chantings or sit in a certain position to meditate. All you need is to start simple and small. However, remember that simple doesn’t mean easy as you have to be consistent in order for your meditation to reach the wanted results.

It is recommended that you first start meditating 2 to 5 minutes every day. All you have to do is to find a comfortable place, close your eyes, and straight you back. The next step is to be aware of your thoughts. Try to be conscious of your breaths, body, and surroundings. Since you’re a beginner at it, don’t be discouraged if your mind wanders away. Reassure to bring it back on the present moment, every time your mind wanders adrift. You can set the time every time you try it. So, after a month, you can double the minutes and see the improvement yourself.

 

Meditation Types

Mindfulness –  This type of meditation is the most common one among meditation types. The best thing about mindfulness is that you can practice it everywhere. Be it waiting in the queue, taking a shower or while walking. All you have to do it is to avoid distractions and focus on the present moment. Be aware of your body, breath, thoughts, feelings, sounds, and objects around you.

Meditation

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Loving-kindness meditation – This type of meditation aims to foster a feeling of positivity and empathy, first for yourself and then for all the world’s creatures. To practice this kind of meditation you have to close your eyes and focus on positive mantras such as ‘May I be healthy, peaceful, and strong.’ The practitioner has to sit in a comfortable place, and first follow a teacher or an audiobook. It usually lasts 15 to 20 minutes per day.

 

Transcendental Meditation –  Transcendental meditation (TM) is a meditation type that was first brought to the U.S by the Indian Maharishi Mahesh Yogi in 1960. This meditation technique as well tends to improve the quality of your life. The goal is to transcend the mind towards a serene and quiet place. It is also recommended first to start it guided by a certified teacher of this technique.

 

Concentrative Meditation – In comparison to other types of meditations, this meditation aims to keep the practitioner focused on a specific thing for the entire period of meditating. You can choose to focus on your breath, a single thought, a sound, object or any entity. Every time your mind drifts away, you have to make sure to bring it back to the focus you first chose. This technique is very beneficial because it helps you increase the ability to focus on a task for a longer time.

 

Guided Meditation – Another form of meditation is guided meditation. Like the name itself, it focuses on external sources like audiobooks, youtube videos or apps that guide you to meditate. Although this form of meditation is useful to help you be more aware of the present moment, it is less recommended. For some people, the ideal meditation technique would be one that doesn’t rely on external factors. Let us try first to choose one that teaches us to meditate relying on ‘internal’ factors.

Meditation

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As it was mentioned earlier, there are also a lot of other types of meditations and blending them is never a mistake, if done right. Sometimes we don’t have the resources, nor the time to try all of the meditation types and find one that fits the best, but if we focus on consistency, regardless of the meditation type we choose, progression will happen. After all, the change is in our mind. Now, whether you have a well-formed background on meditating or you are just a beginner that came to learn some new things about meditating, I hope this article has served you well. Good luck on your journey to self-improvement!