10 Minutes A Day To A Happier, Healthier You

Location Is Everything: Find a location that is quiet, comfortable, and where you can be alone for at least ten minutes. I have peaceful little corner in my home with candles and incense. I find the space so inviting, I want to sit quietly in it. Sit down, relax and rest your hands on your lap. You don't need to worry about how to hold your hands, just do what feels most natural to you. You can sit on the floor cross-legged on a cushion, or use a chair. Don't even think about lotus position if you're new to it! The goal is to be as comfortable as possible with good posture. If you're using the cushion on the floor and your back becomes sore or your legs fall asleep try switching to a chair.

Relax & Breathe: Close your eyes OR leave them open and place your focus on the flame from a candle. There is no right or wrong way. This is about you relaxing and being at peace. Begin by taking slow, deep breaths inhaling with your nose and exhaling through your mouth. Relax into your breathing. Let each breathe flow naturally. The first few intakes of air are likely to be shallow, but as you allow more air to fill your lungs each time, your breaths will gradually become deeper. You will feel your body begin to relax and your breathing will start to flow naturally.

Just Be: Once you are in calm and relaxed state it is time to empty your mind. This is the part where many beginners become frustrated. Why? Because you're about you meet your "Monkey Brain". Not thinking about anything is much more difficult than one would imagine. When I began meditation this was the part that drove me crazy. It felt like the moment I tried to empty my brain, my brain went into overdrive! That's okay and it's normal. Each time you notice a thought let it pass (just like a floating cloud is what my teacher taught me) and go back to focusing on your breathing. I won't lie there many days, weeks and months I was in a cloud forest. Be patient with yourself as you may/will find yourself repeating these cycles of letting go many times. Don't be discourage, nothing worth having comes easy. As your meditation practice develops you will notice that the space between thoughts increases. If you're a very active Type A like me you can try going for a run, bike or to the gym before your meditation session to drains off some of that excess energy. When your ten minutes is up open your eyes and stand up slowly. Have a good stretch, shake out your legs and give yourself a high five! You completed your meditation!

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