Meditation has been around for thousands of years now, so it’s not something that’s entirely new. But it’s only recently that the importance of practicing meditation has been recognized. This practice isn’t about religion or mystical creatures as it may have been in the past. Today, it’s more about using relaxation techniques and mindfulness to reduce stress.
Albeit simple, meditation helps. In such a busy life that everyone lives nowadays, it’s easy to lose track of what’s valuable. Breathe for a few seconds. See the stars. Enjoy the moment. Develop a tranquil mind. No matter how busy you are, you can’t go wrong with taking a few minutes to meditate.
Continue reading, so you can learn about some of the best meditative practices that will help you manage and reduce stress.
1. Mantra Meditation
Mantra meditation refers to the process of repeating a calming word, phrase, or thought, so you can prevent distractive thoughts. Imagine this scenario. Today is a big day for you. But it’s hard for you to believe that you can do well. Tell yourself, ‘I can do this.’ Once you do, you’ll start to feel better and develop a newfound sense of confidence.
Mantra meditation brings in so many benefits to your life:
- It increases your focus.
- It creates positive changes in your brain, like improved mood and well-being, and leads to less fatigue.
- It improves verbal memory.
There are many ways you can apply mantra meditation in your life, depending on what you believe in. If you’re one of those who believe in the healing powers of mantras, a list of all reiki symbols might prove useful to you too.
2. Mindfulness Meditation
Mindfulness meditation is the practice of being more aware of the moment and the present. This means being involved in the activity, you’re doing and avoiding distractions. You aren’t stressing about thoughts in the past, nor worries of the future. Simple as it may be. However, many people still struggle with this. It’s easier to get caught in all your thoughts that you just forget to be more present.
People’s busy lives and tight schedules have made it more difficult to live in the moment and think for the present. This entails feeling what you ought to do at the exact moment. It can be challenging, but it can be done. To focus on the present, you can apply these techniques, like:
- Finding a quiet place where you can be on your own, focus, or concentrate
- Setting a time limit to ‘busy’ activities in a day and always making time for yourself
- Incorporating mindfulness as part of your morning routine
- Listening to your favorite songs
- Removing any unnecessary distractions in your life
Like mantra meditation, mindfulness meditation has profound benefits for your mind and body. Those include:
- Relieving stress
- Helping facilitate recovery from mental health issues
- Improving your general health
3. Progressive Muscle Relaxation
Progressive muscle relaxation is a relaxation technique that focuses on tense muscles and relaxing them. This depends on what type of muscle you’d like to concentrate on.
When you realize the contrast between muscle tension and relaxation, you’ll be able to be more conscious of what your sensory experiences are. You can start with your neck and head and then move downwards to the rest of your body.
Let’s take a look at what progressive muscle relaxation offers:
- It reduces tension and anxiety.
- It may ease your neck pain.
- It may help improve your systolic blood pressure.
Here’s how you can get started on progressive muscle relaxation:
- Practice it consistently, so you can establish a routine.
- Set aside a regular time each day, usually before going to bed.
- Listen to relaxing music.
4. Reduction of Stress Triggers
Making that conscious effort to reduce your stress triggers is another important meditative practice you should do regularly. The more you’re able to incorporate that kind of mindset and attitude in your life, the better you’ll be able to live a more relaxing, happier, and more content life.
For the most part, this begins with identifying your stress triggers. If it’s your job, you just can’t let it go, no matter how demanding it is. But what about your job has been stressing you out? Have you been working overtime constantly? If so, reduce it to one day at a time.
Many of life’s stressors are the demands you may have chosen by yourself. Reducing stress triggers can unload a lot of weight off your shoulders, so you’ll have more time to unwind and enjoy your life.
One of the most popular meditation techniques is perhaps yoga. Like meditation, yoga was significantly associated with religion. In modern times, however, anyone can do yoga. It’s meant to be more of a healthy exercise and a form of stress management. Today, many swear by yoga as part of their daily routine.
Yoga offers a lot of physical, emotional, and mental benefits. It’s a good exercise and meditation technique for anyone to practice, regardless of age and health condition.
Some of the many benefits you can gain from starting a yoga routine include:
- Improving balance, flexibility, and strength
- Easing symptoms of arthritis
- Sleeping better
These tips will help you practice yoga at home:
- Start with the 5’s: five counts of breathing, five minutes, and five poses.
- Try joining online yoga classes.
- Choose a comfortable spot where you can practice yoga.
Last on this list is visualization. This meditative practice is familiar to most and helps reduce stress. It’s common for virtually anybody to visualize, daydream, envision what they want to have and want to be in the future.
Visualization works because it helps you relax. It puts you in a better mood, allowing you to deal with stress more effectively. After all, there’s nothing more relaxing than picturing your future.
However, when you practice visualization, remember to focus only on the positive side. Don’t visualize anything negative. Otherwise, you’re going to become even more stressed than you already are.
Deciding to practice meditation will give your life a sense of balance and inner peace. There’s so much to life than simply going through your day-to-day routine. If you’re constantly moving in the same endless circle, then you’ll only feel even more stressed and miserable. So, try these meditative practices, and you’ll see for yourself how they are indeed life-changing and help you reduce your stress.