Mindfulness Meditation: Beginner Mindfulness Tips

mindfulness meditation: beginner mindfulness tips
Hi! I’m Inga

I am passionate about helping women transform their mindsets and embrace self-worth, overcome the barriers that hinder their ability to become their best versions, and establish loving relationships with their partners, themselves, and others.

Meditation is a powerful tool that helps us manage the stresses of our busy lives. Regular mindfulness meditation helps create emotional balance, improve self-control, decrease anxiety and depression, and even boost concentration and memory. Meditation is a practice that can evolve into a healthy habit to drastically improve your quality of life by connecting your whole mind, body, and soul.

Meditation is a practice of concentrated focus and attention. While meditating, your attention can be placed upon a sound, an object, a specific visualization, your breath, a slight movement, or attention itself.

The purpose of mindfulness meditation is to increase awareness and appreciation for the present moment. When you enter a meditative state, you can instantly reduce stress, feel more relaxed, and enhance your personal and spiritual growth.

Mindfulness and Meditation Are Not the Same Thing

Practicing meditation is like practicing an instrument. Practicing an instrument strengthens your ability as a musician. Similarly, practicing meditation strengthens your ability to be mindful.

Mindfulness and meditation are not synonymous terms, but they appear together in the media so often that we may quickly think they are. 

Mindfulness refers to the power of our minds to give focused, nonjudgmental attention to our experiences as they unfold. Meditation refers to specific exercises that can be used to increase, improve , and refine our abilities as mindful human beings.

Not all forms of meditation, however, are designed to cultivate mindfulness. Meditation is an umbrella term for various practices used to train the mind in different areas or bring about certain states of awareness. Some meditations are oriented toward creating transcendent experiences, achieving a trance state, achieving nirvana, or gaining extraordinary powers.

Meditation itself, however, is not exotic, at least not in the way that we will study and practice it. The meditation we teach is profoundly ordinary; there is nothing extraterrestrial or transcendent about achieving intra-connectedness within our human selves.

Types of Meditation:

  • Stillness meditation – Vipassana, Hatha yoga, Tao Chi, Chi Gong
  •  Flowing Meditation – Reflection, contemplation, breath, concentration on object, mantra meditation, chanting, imagery, mindfulness, Zen meditation
  • Guided meditation, guided imagery

Practices Areas of Meditation

Different areas of meditation practices use different methods to achieve different results, including still sitting, lying down, movement meditation (like Qi Gong or Tai Chi), or short breathing space practices that you can use in everyday life. It can be very useful to try different meditation practices to see what you feel works best for you. If you already have an established meditation practice, sometimes it is useful to try new practices to reinvigorate your meditation work and create more positive effects.

The stereotypical depiction of meditation involves a person sitting in the lotus position with thumb and finger connected and chanting ‘Ohm.’ But this is simply not an accurate depiction of the wide variety of meditation methods practiced today. Many meditation classes have no religious context, and sitting on the floor with your legs crossed is not necessary.

Beginner Mindfulness Tips:

Make It A Real Commitment

As obvious as this sounds, this is where most people go wrong with anything they want to change in their lives. Are you likely guilty of this, too? You want to do something and tell yourself you will do it, but you never follow the plan you create.

You never genuinely do what is needed to get it done. Write it down, make the appropriate schedule, and stick to it, or you will never get there. Telling yourself that you want something is only the first step of action; commitment to the plan is where success starts, and it’s a commitment you can make.

Mastery Takes Time

For most people, meditation does not come instantly or easily, and its benefits may not be realized quickly. It often causes people to give up and believe it must not work. However, much like exercising or learning new healthy habits, learning meditation is a matter of dedicated and consistent practice.

Start slow, and don’t expect too much from yourself. Start each morning with a one-minute mindful exercise like a breathing exercise or meditation. Then, once you are comfortable with the time, increase it until you can do it longer and longer.

Practicing even  5 to 10 minutes each day regularly will produce transformative results over time.

Slow Down and Free Up More of Your Time

Stop being so busy and have more free time – being busy does not equal success. If you find yourself always rushing, you are likely not giving your best, only leading to failure or lackluster results. Learn when to say no more and take the time to evaluate yourself to be sure you are doing what is needed to be successful.

You Cannot Fail in Meditation

In meditation, there is no failure. Failure can only exist in meditation when you fail to pay attention. However, realizing that you stopped paying attention means that you are now paying attention and, therefore, succeeding at meditation. While this may seem confusing, through practice, you will see that you cannot fail at meditation as long as you do it.

Meditation practice is an activity that is best approached with an openness of mind and sincerity of heart. The best way to learn how to approach life this way is to begin meditating and continue practicing until you have learned how to approach both meditation and the world with an open heart and mind.

Try these strategies to live a more mindful life and increase happiness in life and relationships.

If you want to try guided meditation, download my FREE 10-minute stress management or confidence booster meditations here.

I also created a Zen Professional:  5-Minute Mindfulness Techniques for the Workplace video series to help busy professionals learn the basics of mindfulness and experience its profound benefits in just 5 minutes a day. You can learn more about it here.

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