There are many different types of meditation to choose from. So, if one doesn’t seem to be working for you then find another! This is not a one size fits all practice.
Types of meditation include Buddhist practices, transcendental, zen, mantra, chakra, sound, Reiki meditation, guided and active. There is a lot of information out there. To start jut think about what type of person you are, the amount of time and dedication you have, and where your interests lie. What do you intend to get out of meditation?
Many people find one that they love and stick with it. However, you may find that after practicing one for a long period of time that you may need to switch, and then maybe go back to it later. That is ok. Don’t judge yourself. Just remember that even though the practice of meditation has numerous benefits, it isn’t always easy. Some styles are better for different times in your life. The point is that you continue to work through the hard times because that is when you need it the most.
Here are some benefits from practicing:
- Healing the body
- Handle stress better
- Feel less anxious
- Increased energy
- Improved focus
- Deeper spiritual connection to oneself
- Increased amount of positive feelings
- Approach life in a calm and aware manner
Over time and practice meditation helps to quite the mind and bring your consciousness to the present moment, efficiently helping you to “let go”. Meditation helps you connect with your “true self”, and by doing so bring awareness to your connection to others and the whole of creation. It helps to calm the “monkey mind” and improves your focus, and as a result is calming and helps increase creativity. It is believed that almost any activity can be meditative if it absorbs your attention and keeps you present. Have you ever found yourself calm and aware while doing the dishes?
Some meditations to consider:
Qigong, tai chi, yoga – These exercises cultivate “life energy” and promote the circulation of energy (Qi) through the focus on breathing and movement. In particular these exercises circulate oxygen and blood. If you are interested in one of these, seek out a qualified instructor.
Activity mindfulness – Walking or doing other enjoyable activities such as sports, art, music or writing promote activity mindfulness. Doing dishes, gardening or cleaning can also be considered a meditation if we are focused and present while enjoying the experience.
Guided meditation – This type of meditation is where one sits and focuses on specific imagery given by an instructor or through audio. This form of meditation is often used in healing, as one can focus on specific parts of the body.
Sound – The focus of this meditation is on a sound, repeated mantra or vibration. For centuries people have known and understood the healing properties of sound.
Mantra – Mantra meditation is repeating a mantra such as “Om” or “Om mani padme hum.” transcendental meditation, a very popular and well-known practice includes a mantra and is usually practiced about 20 minutes twice a day. It might be a good idea to seek out an instructor for transcendental meditation, as it has specific techniques that might require a higher level of assistance.
Sitting – Sitting meditation is very common and can incorporate focus on sound, a mantra or breathing. Practices tend to originate from Buddhism, and established positions, such as the lotus, have been taught to encourage deeper inner connection.
Binaural Beats – This is a modern addition to the meditation circle. Binaural beats are special frequencies that put the brain into meditative states such as alpha or theta. The frequencies, which synchronize brain waves, have benefits such as increased awareness. Binaural beats tend to quickly enhance mood. They can be found easily using an Internet search.
Reiki – Many schools of Reiki, taught in the United States, teach that you are nothing but a conduit. That you are harnessing universal energy “Ki” (same concept as Qi) to utilize a healing response. However, Sensei Usui originally taught it as a meditation that you practiced in order to become the energy. Making it not that much different from the concept of Qigong and Tai chi.
The Japanese style of Reiki is taught in three classes, but is utilized and practiced in everyday life as a set of meditations and chants (mantras and sound vibrations) that are meant to help you on the path of finding true self. Healing of others takes place from your presence, and not from being a conduit.
If you are ready for meditation, start slowly with one that looks enjoyable. Remember to not judge yourself. You will be learning new tools. You may find that you just do not enjoy one style. That is ok! Keep working on it until you find a meditation style that works best for you.
Calandra Center for Health and Wellness offers many different types of classes on meditation and mindfulness.
We are conveniently located in Chicago’s South Loop and Arlington Heights Illinois. Offering acupuncture, Reiki, energy medicine, and NAET Allergy Elimination to the greater Chicago area.