Mo Mulla is a work from home dad who enjoys reading and listening to music, He loves being a dad and husband to a growing family. He also loves writing about his passions and hopes to change the world, 1 blog post at a time! Mo is currently running his website – parentalquestions.com, with multiple blogs on different Practical Tips & Advice For Everyday Parenting.
recently he has written a blog on meditation – and his ‘7 ways to achieve your relaxation goals’
Have you heard about meditation, and you are itching to try it?
In the last few decades, meditation and the study of mindfulness have seen a steady rise.
With the perceived mental and physical benefits, it is not hard to see why everyone wants to join this bandwagon. So, does it really work? And what can you do to achieve your relaxation goals if you are setting out on this journey?
Does Meditation Work?
While neuroscientists and psychologists have just started studying the effects of meditation, the practice has actually been around for centuries. One of the pieces of evidence for this dates back to between 5,000 to 2500 BCE in India’s subcontinent with the artistic walls of people in a meditation mode. However, the first written evidence of meditation dates back to 1500 BCE in Vedas.
That aside, recent studies have shown that meditation does, indeed, work. The practice, which involves training yourself to focus your mind for a particular period in silence or with the help of some chanting, is believed to be effective. Some studies have shown that meditation can help alleviate anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, and chronic pain.
Besides these, meditation is also believed to help in:
1. Reducing stress levels
2. Lengthening one’s attention span 3. Improving sleep
4. Reducing blood pressure
5. Fighting addiction
6. Reducing age-related memory loss
7 Ways To Achieve Your Relaxation Goals
Meditation, like any other activity, requires your undivided attention. To reap its benefits and achieve your desired relaxation goals, you must dedicate yourself to the practice. Below are a few tips on how to achieve this:
First, you must commit time in your busy day to meditate. Training your mind to relax is not easy, believe us. While MBSR (Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction) recommends one to meditate for at least 40 to 45 minutes, you can start slow and build your way up as you learn the practice. Start with 5 minutes every day and increase this time. Also, you do not have to meditate for that long at once. TM (Transcendental Meditation) recommends meditation twice a day for 20 minutes.
2. Get Rid of Destructions
Destructions are the greatest enemy of meditation. Ensure you set your meditation time and location where there are no destructions. Some meditate in the evening before getting to bed. Others choose to meditate in the morning or the afternoon. Whatever time it is, ensure there are no people to distract you.
3. Get Comfortable & Relax
Your body and mind need to be as comfortable and relaxed as possible. If stretching before this helps your body loosen up after a long day, then go ahead and do it. If you would like some background music for this, there are many meditation and relaxation music online that you can play.
4. Choose a Position
Contrary to popular belief, especially by beginners, you do not have to sit and position your body like a pretzel. A meditation position is a matter of personal preferences. You can meditate while lying down, seated on the couch, standing, or walking.
Your mind might wander before you fully learn the art, but always try to bring it back to the present. Forget the past of your plans. It helps to get a target, like your favorite relaxing spot or object. Focusing on your breathing can also help.
6. Stay Fit
Your mind is not the only thing that needs relaxing. A tense body will not help you achieve your relaxation goals. Ensure you get time to stay fit, maybe take a walk, for a swim, jogging or sign up at your local gym. You can even do basic exercises at home and invest in affordable home gym equipment.
7. PMR (Progressive Muscle Relaxation)
PMR involves tightening and relaxing various body muscles, like your jaw, shoulders, abdomen, neck, feet, among others. You get better at this as you practice it. It releases any tension on these muscles, and it helps induce some relaxation as you practice it.
While there is no much evidence on the full benefits of meditation, studies so far show that it helps. The results work differently in individuals, but meditation might help relieve your stress levels, depression, or anxiety and even increase your attention span. With the above 7 ways to achieve your relaxation goals, you can easily start reaping meditation’s fruits.