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It's not selfish to take time for yourself.

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It's not selfish to take time for yourself.

I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again: not only is it not selfish to take time for yourself, but it’s essential that you do!

Pushing the “pause” button and honouring your body, mind and soul with a simple relaxation ritual can work wonders on your health, mood and general wellbeing. Especially in today's surreal world.

There are many different forms of meditation, there is no right or no wrong. It all depends on what type you resonate with. It’s just like exercise, with what makes you feel the best – running, yoga, boot camp, pilates, walking, swimming?

Some of the different ways of meditating are – mindfulness meditation (which is focusing on the breath and observing your thoughts and actions in the present moment without judging yourself), guided meditation with music, candle focus meditation (place a candle where the flame is in front of the third eye and focus on the flame), open eye meditation (looking into some else’s eyes or a mirror for 20 minutes), TM, breath meditation, and many more.

The most essential thing with meditation is to be comfortable. You don’t want to be sitting for 20 minutes and thinking that your legs, arms or bottom is hurting as it will distract you. It is best to sit in an upright position with good back support whether that be sitting on a chair, on the sofa, on a meditation cushion or on your bed. Place your hands comfortably sitting over one another or gently in your lap. You may like to burn a candle and some incense, however, this is optional of course.

It is important not to lie down when you meditate as your body is in ‘the sleep’ position and it will think that it’s time for bed and you may fall asleep. The only exception to this is you are in bed sick or are in hospital.

Here are some tips on how to meditate (even if you’ve never done it before):

  • Set aside a time when you will not be disturbed and turn your phone off (or on silent mode).
  • Find a comfortable place to sit.
  • Close your eyes.
  • Inhale through your nose, and exhale through your nose.
  • Avoid the urge to move, itch, scratch or adjust your clothes.
  • Simply sit and observe the breath and the sensations that are showing up throughout your body.
  • Don’t fight the painful sensations hoping that they go away, and don’t hang on to the pleasurable sensations hoping that they stay. Accept that any of the sensations (pleasant or unpleasant) you may be feeling will indeed pass. Just as any cravings or aversions you have in life pass also.

Please don’t be discouraged by the frustration of trying to still your mind. Starting anything new is difficult at first. Meditation is a life-long practice. Take small steps. Try at first to meditate for just 5 minutes a day. Then 10 minutes and so on.

It’s far better to practice for a short period of time every day consistently, than longer durations less frequently.

If you would like further tips and assistance with quietening your mind, Janoah van Kekem - a friend of mine - has a brilliant course called: 21 Days to Mastering Your Meditation. You can check it out HERE.  

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