If you're looking for a way to relax and de-stress, look no further than meditation. It's a great way to clear your mind and calm down after a long day. And meditation only takes 10 minutes! Here are some ideas for getting started.
We know you've probably got the basics of meditation at this point in your journey, so let's just cover those bases quickly and get onto these hot, hot tips.
The Basics of Meditation
In cased you don't know a lot about meditation, we're going to review the basics right here!
Learning About The Present Moment
First off: meditation is all about being in the present moment. That's why it's also known as mindfulness meditation. So focus on how you feel in your meditation practice: even if it sucks. That's ok. Recognizing those feelings can help you move through them easier, and meditation is key.
It's Not Focusing on "Nothing"
Secondly, you're never going to be able to maintain focus on "nothing" for very long. Our brains are optimized as little idea generators. That's ok. The important practice is really just bringing your attention back to your breath or present moment when you get distracted. To meditate is to be self-aware of your own bodily functions and where your brain is.
Meditation Is A Muscle
Finally, it's a muscle. Start with just a few minutes. You can't expect to jump into meditation and be successful for an hour or more. Five or ten minutes are totally enough when you're starting a meditation practice.
Alright, here are some tips and ideas for 10-minute meditation sessions! Meditate away, dear friends.
Idea 1: A Loving Meditation
A loving meditation is a peaceful, happy meditation. With either a simple guided meditation or your own mindfulness practice, you should be able to bring about a sense of loving in your own life.
To begin, sit in a comfortable position with your eyes closed. Focus on your breath and breathe deeply and slowly. Once you feel calm, begin to think of things that make you happy. It could be a memory, a place, or a person. Picture these things as vividly as possible and let the happiness wash over you.
Having problems with lovingness?
If you're in robot mode, don't worry: you can still reap the benefits of a loving meditation if you don't feel super strongly in the moment. Go through the motions and trust that the practice will eventually help you develop a sense of love and peace. It's perfectly healthy and natural to feel things more in certain contexts or times of your life.
Idea 2: Play With Your Heartbeat In Meditation
Focusing on your own heartbeat is a great way to have a simple 10-minute meditation session. You can do this meditation with your eyes open or closed, but we recommend starting with your eyes closed so you can focus inward more easily.
Start by finding a comfortable position and placing one hand on your chest and the other on your stomach. Breathe deeply and slowly for a few minutes, focusing on the rise and fall of your chest and the thump-thump of your heart. In the moment, does it feel too fast or slow? Search for how your body is feeling in this moment of mindfulness.
Feel the blood flowing out of your heart and into your lungs; back from your lungs to your heart; and out to even the tips of your fingers and toes. You are alive. You are feeling. You are in control of your own heartbeat. And for this moment, everything is just as it should be.
Idea 3: Listen to the Sounds Around You In Meditation
This 10-minute meditation is all about listening to the sounds around you and letting them flow over you without judgment. It's a form of mindfulness meditation practice that helps you be aware of things other than your body and mind. Meditating in the present like this is a great meditation practice if you have a noisy house like I do.
I have four million pets, and so, meditation is often about using their breathing, grunts, and slurps as a way to evoke calm inside of me. I don't have to search for distractions in these ten minutes - it's a great way for me to practice mindfulness.
Meditate on the birds singing, on your own breathing, even on your furnace kicking on and off. The only thing that I struggle with when I meditate like this is the spoken word. I can't listen to my partner on a work call. Language completely messes up the benefits of meditating like this for me.
Idea 4: A Body Scan Meditation
This is a great 10-minute meditation for people who have a lot of tension in their bodies or minds. It's a way to let go of all that pressure, even if it's just for ten minutes.
To begin, sit or lie down in a comfortable position. Begin to search your physical being, starting at the tips of your toes. How do they feel? Are they curled up or relaxed? What about your ankles and calves - how do they feel? This type of meditation asks you to pay attention to every inch of yourself.
As you move up your body, note any areas of tension. It's okay if you can't fix them in this moment; just be aware of them. Once you reach your head, focus on your face and scalp. Mindfulness is about recognizing the state of our bodies. As we develop these skills, we'll be able to recognize any sign of stress or anxiety. That is one of the many benefits of meditating regularly.
If you're struggling with a body scan, you can use a guided meditation from YouTube or any free meditation app. Guided meditation often uses scanning to help you be aware of your current situation.
Idea 5: The 3-Breath Meditation
This is a simple but effective 10-minute meditation that only requires three deep breaths. It's a great way to start your day or end your night.
Sit in a comfortable position with your eyes closed. Inhale deeply through your nose, filling up your lungs. Hold that breath for two seconds, and then release it slowly and deliberately. Hold at the bottom of your breath for two seconds.
On your second breath, repeat the process, but hold the breath at the top and bottom for four seconds. When you meditate like this, you are being intentional about your bodily functions. Meditation like this is a great way to calm yourself during anxiety.
On your third breath, hold for six seconds. When you've gone through that cycle, you can start back over at the 2 second breath holding. Varying your breath holding is a great way to keep meditation interesting to your brain.