When I first started hearing the word “Meditation” I had all sorts of visions of hard core yoga or crazy retreats where they make you wear paper pants. The more I learned about what it truly was, the more I was intrigued. When you are looking at ways to cope with the stress life often brings, you should really consider meditation. If you have read any of the previous blogs that have gone out, I wrote one about stress and what it does to your weight loss goals. The blog may be holiday centered, but the principles are still the same, if you haven’t yet read it you can here. It seems simple enough, be still, clear your mind, and just be, not hard, right? Man it’s hard! I am one of the many adults that can’t just be still and just exist. I have to be moving, doing, going, but that isn’t good for us. We need that down time, we need to be able to just breathe and be. Meditation is where you learn to do that.
I always recommend starting small and working your way up to whatever time your schedule allows. I will warn you, once you get into the habit you crave it. The solitude is addicting. There are no real rules as to where or when you meditate, I find meditating when you first get up sets the tone for the whole day. Although there is something to be said for meditating at night due to the many sleep benefits. Bringing down your stress levels is the goal and whenever that can be accomplished is the key. Chronic stress leads to many things, weight gain and chronic inflammation are just a couple.
There are many different apps out there to help you learn to meditate and several that I recommend. The ones I recommend are 10% Happier, Headspace, or Calm. Some of these do require a purchase, but they are worth it. These apps will help guide you in learning how to meditate and find your style of meditation. I personally like a guide when I first start, but once I get the hang of it I can usually do it myself. Making sure you are consistent with it for at least a month is key in making sure you stick with it and to start seeing results. Below you will find a “quick start guide” to meditation. If you are needing more help or guidance, feel free to contact me.