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Use These 10 Tips to Get the Most Out of Your Meditation Practice (From a Meditation Guru)

Erik Vienneau
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So you’ve started a meditation practice, but now you’re looking to take your meditation to the next level. These meditation tips will help you do just that – and you’ll realize that meditation really isn’t as complicated as it seems!
 
When you first start your daily meditation practice, everything seems a bit intimidating. How long do you sit for? What was that noise? Sh*t, did you remember to turn off your curling iron? All those buzzing thoughts will immediately jump into your mind as soon as you sit down for a moment of stillness.
 
With practice, and these meditation tips, you’ll find that your time on your meditation cushion gets a bit easier and feels a bit more natural. Read on, and happy meditating!
 

Use These 10 Tips to Get the Most Out of Your Meditation Practice

These 10 meditation tips will teach you how to cultivate your daily meditation practice.
 

1. Choose a practice and stick with it

There are endless types of meditation practices. Mindfulness, present moment awareness with non-attachment, is the perfect foundational practice to start with.
 
 

2. Make your plan

You don’t have to dive right in with super long meditations. Research finds that just 20 minutes of meditation per day shows better results than inconsistently meditating for longer amounts of time. Commit to 30 days of 10 minute meditations to start building your new habit.
 
 

3. Commit to a friend

An accountability partner drastically increases regularity around your practice. Commit to sending a daily accountability text to a friend who also wants to learn how to meditate daily. You’ll be amazed how often that text will inspire you (or your friend) to hit the meditation cushion.
 
 

4. Meditate first thing in the morning

You’re busy. We get it. So, meditate before your day gets rolling. It’ll give your day a positivity boost, and you’ll be thankful that you started your day with some self-love.
 
 

5. Don’t expect it to go well

Don’t expect to sit in pure bliss and stillness your first few sessions. Instead, try and be cool with whatever thoughts, feelings, and sensations that arise. They will come and go. Don’t attach to them. This is called equanimity, and it’s a far more attainable goal than perfect stillness and bliss.
 

 

6. Find a quiet spot to practice

It’s time to put Roger out in the yard (and perhaps your dog too!), so you can have some peace and quiet. Try to burn a candle or put a picture of someone who inspires you on a table. Make your practice sacred. This is your time – honor it by creating the space.
 
Hint: Don’t use your bed . . . you’ll fall asleep!
 
 

7. Assume the position

Find a firm cushion and sit your booty down. It’s important that your cushion is high enough so that, when sitting cross-legged, the bottom of your knees rest on the floor and your hips are elevated above your knees.
 
Keep your spine straight. Your chin is tucked. Gently rest your tongue on the roof of your mouth and allow your lips to be slightly parted. Rest your hands on your thighs, palms down. Allow your eyes to close gently, or keep a soft gaze 3-5 feet in front of you. Mindfully breathe in and out through your nose.
 
 

8. Set a timer

Turn your phone to silent and use it as a timer, but avoid the temptation to check your phone! Put your phone behind you where you won’t look at it.
 
There are also some great apps you can download while you learn how to meditate. Consider downloading the Welzen App or Insight Timer.
 
 

9. Don’t get discouraged

When you quiet down each day, you’ll likely be amazed by the craziness of your chattering monkey mind! Be kind to yourself. The point of meditation is not to stop thinking, but to learn how to observe thoughts without attachment.
 
When you do the practice below, you may have to come back to your breath 100 times in a session. That’s OK! Just like in the gym, when you learn how to meditate you’re exercising a new muscle. The muscle of mindfulness.
 
 

10. Do it for yourself and others

In the Buddhist tradition, this is called Loving Kindness and Dedicating the Merit. Know that, when you meditate, you are practicing self-healing. And through healing yourself, you’re healing this world.
 
What you’re doing matters. Your state of mind has an impact. At the end of your meditation, bow forward with your hands at your chest, and send out the wish that all beings find peace.
 

There’s No Time Like the Present to Start Meditating!

With these meditation tips, forming a daily meditation habit becomes just a bit easier. I hope you enjoy your time on your cushion, and that you find everything you’re seeking!
 
Remember – no two meditation practices will be the same, and some days will be better than others. Trust the process and enjoy the journey down the path of mindfulness. See you on the flip side!
 

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Erik Vienneau

Erik Vienneau of AWAKE Mindful Living meets people where they are along the path of wellness to offer opportunities to discover a peaceful and health-filled life. When he's not on his cushion you'll find him being simple and easy with friends and family. He believes "Peaceful Minds Create a Peaceful Planet.”

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