Life is busy. And crazy and hectic and overscheduled and so much more. As women, we feel the need to be all the things all the time. We are mothers, sisters, daughters, wives, friends, employees, employers, volunteers, and household managers. Sometimes it can be overwhelming. We can put ourselves last to take care of the needs of others. Even though women are nurturers by nature, we often forget to nurture ourselves.
Lack of self-care can lead to us feeling tired and getting sick. It fuels depressive feelings and can cause us to break down. It is so important for us to remember that in order for us to be our best selves, we have to take time out to take care of ourselves. One way to start small with this task is to take time out for meditation.
Meditation has so many helpful benefits. Starting this practice in your life can help you lower your stress levels, improve your ability to focus, help you control an overactive brain and racing thoughts, and teach you to be more present in all of life’s moments. Many people report that adding meditation to their daily routine adds a general sense of calm to their world.
The best part about meditation is that you can start right now and it only takes a few minutes. Let’s be real for a minute. Nobody has a bunch of extra time in their day, but we could all probably find five to ten minutes. And for meditation, just five to ten minutes is a great place to start. You don’t need any fancy equipment, special clothing, or even a specialized space for meditation. Just you, just as you are, in a quiet place.
If you want to give meditation a try, here are a few simple steps to follow as you give it a go.
- Before you get started, set an intention and time limit. (An intention can be as simple as “try to mediate” or “clear your mind” and a beginner time limit of 5 to 10 minute is just fine.)
- Sit down in a quiet and calm space.
- Notice your body and your breathing.
Take note of how your body is feeling and adjust your position to be as comfortable as possible. Start to notice your breath as you breathe in and breathe out. Focus on making it an even flowing breath.
- Watch out for a wandering mind. When your thoughts start to wander, try to move them to the side and go back to focusing on your breath.
- Be easy on yourself. When your mind wanders and you have a hard time focusing, give yourself some grace. When you are new to something, it isn’t always easy right away. Over time you will get better at it and it will become easier to accomplish.
- End with a renewed sense of awareness. When your time is up, open your eyes, look around, notice the calm that you feel, and take into account the details of the environment surrounding you. Feel appreciation for it all, and thank yourself for taking time out for you.
Following these six simple steps will give you a small perspective into the world of meditation. If you enjoy it, there are lots of ways you can expand on the experience. There are a great deal of resources online to help you continue the journey. Many websites and apps offer guided meditations where you can listen as someone walks you through a meditative session. There is also music available to help you relax through it. If you decide that it can be helpful in your life, the possibilities are endless when you take time out to meditate.