Category: Meditation Techniques
Displaying 10 - 18 of 21 entries.

The 12 Steps of the Mindfulness Meditation Practice

  • Posted on January 30, 2015 at 3:17 am

By Charles A. Francis

As you know, mindfulness meditation is sweeping the nation, and for good reasons. Research over the last 20 years has confirmed many of the health benefits to the body and mind. But not many people understand how to get started in this up-and-coming meditation practice. And if you don’t use the proper techniques, then you won’t achieve the results you’re looking for.

The 12 Steps of the Mindfulness Meditation Practice is a new and unique approach to learning mindfulness meditation. It is designed to guide you through the practice in a simple step-by-step process, so you can get started quickly and achieve immediate and steady results.

How to Overcome the Most Common Meditation Obstacles

  • Posted on August 11, 2014 at 3:35 pm

By James Allen

Ever feel like the moment you decide to do something good, some cosmic twist of fate throws obstacles in your way? You decide to go on a diet—the very same day that your friends want to come over for pizza and beer. You decide to run every day, but then it rains all week. Starting a new meditation habit is no different. Here are some of the most common roadblocks that people face—and what to do about them.

1. A Chronic Lack of Time

Easily the largest of the obstacles is lack of time. There never seems to be enough as it is, much less for sitting around for 20 minutes doing nothing. One way around this is to take advantage of the time you already spend doing nothing, and convert it into meditation. Stuck on the bus for a 30-minute commute? Close your eyes, lay your head back, and focus on nothing but your breathing.

Mindfulness Meditation: Boost Its Benefits by Establishing a Routine

  • Posted on July 14, 2014 at 10:08 pm

By James Allen

While meditation, in its many forms, is beneficial even in small increments, research has shown that to get the long-term health benefits you have to practice regularly. If you’re looking to start a meditation routine, here are five strategies that can help.

1. Setting Your Meditation Goals

Before proceeding, take some time to establish your goals. Be specific. A vague goal, such as “I want to meditate more” isn’t really going to benefit you. With that said, here are a few tips to keep in mind:

Frequency. Ultimately, how often you meditate is completely up to you, but keep in mind that, generally speaking, the more regularly you meditate, the more beneficial it will be.

How to Slow Your Racing Mind

  • Posted on March 18, 2013 at 12:11 am

By Charles A. Francis

Do you ever find it difficult to slow down your mind? For some of us, a racing mind is a serious problem. When we’re agitated, we have no control over our mind, and it becomes extremely difficult to meditate.

An agitated mind leads to stress and a whole host of health problems, such as high blood pressure and heart disease. It even disrupts our relationships and sleep.

Fortunately, there’s a simple solution to this problem. No matter how fast your mind is racing, you can learn how to cultivate a calm and serene mind, and the good news is that it’s a lot easier than you might think. The only catch is that you have to be willing to take a few simple suggestions.

Mindfulness Meditation for Beginners

  • Posted on January 18, 2013 at 12:42 am

By Charles A. Francis

These days, mindfulness meditation for beginners is a subject that gives rise to a great deal of confusion. With the rising popularity of meditation, it’s surprising to find that basic instruction is often overlooked. At almost every meditation group and retreat that I’ve attended, it was simply assumed the I knew how to meditate.

It took me several years of trial and error to figure out how to meditate properly. In this article, I’m going to take some of the mystery out of meditation for beginners, so you’ll learn much more quickly than I did, and start making immediate progress.

4 Tips for Staying Committed to Your Mindfulness Meditation Practice

  • Posted on December 2, 2012 at 11:57 pm

By Charles A. Francis

These days there is much talk about mindfulness meditation. You often hear about how the practice will transform your life, and how you’ll achieve a multitude of health benefits.

While there are indeed many benefits of mindfulness meditation, for many people, these benefit seem elusive because they’re having trouble getting started and staying committed to their practice.

Which of these statements best describes your experience with meditation?

  • “I’m having trouble getting started, and staying committed to my practice.”
  • “I’ve tried different ways of meditating, but I still don’t see much progress.”
  • “I’m not sure of what to do when I’m meditating.”
  • “My mind is racing, and I have trouble sitting still.”

If you answered “yes” to any of these statements, then you’re not alone. I had all these problems when I started, and so have most of the people I’ve talked to. The good news is that there is a simple approach to overcoming these problems.

Letting Go of the Past with Mindfulness Meditation, Part 2

  • Posted on October 31, 2012 at 4:25 pm

By Charles A. Francis

Letting go of the past can be quite a challenge for many of us. Pleasant memories lure us back to happier times in our lives, and unpleasant memories can be filled with unresolved issues. There is nothing inherently wrong with remembering the past. Rather it’s our inability to let go of our attachment to it that keeps us from being happy in the present.

This doesn’t mean that we should forget the past. It only means that we need to stop clinging to it, if we want to find freedom from our suffering. We’ll still be able to enjoy pleasant memories. In fact, we’ll enjoy them even more when we overcome the desire to recreate them. We’ll also learn to accept unpleasant memories, because we’ll be able to accept them without expecting amends from people who have harmed us.

The Mindfulness Meditation Retreat: Your Most Powerful Tool for Spiritual Development

  • Posted on May 31, 2012 at 4:50 pm

By Charles A. Francis

Have you ever wondered if there was a way you could speed up your spiritual development? I’m sure you know of some people who are so peaceful and serene that nothing seems to bother them. The secret of their success is actually quite simple. They’ve figured out what works, and they do it consistently.

Why the Slow Progress?

The reason many of us have trouble with our spiritual development is because we don’t avail ourselves of some simple tools that can be tremendously effective. In Buddhism, they have what is called the Noble Eightfold Path. If you’re not familiar with them, these are essentially basic practices that will help us achieve enlightenment, or freedom from suffering.

Meditation and the Busy Woman

  • Posted on April 18, 2012 at 1:33 pm

By Mary Sovran

The average woman today is so busy taking care of everyone else in her family, that she doesn’t have much time to pursue her own interests. At the end of the day, she is exhausted. Fitting in meditation would seem like an impossible task.

If a woman stays at home and has children, she is busy with their schedules. In the morning, she is getting them dressed and ready for school, making lunches, etc. Then the obligations of the day begin with, laundry, cleaning, and other chores. She has to decide what to make for dinner and attend to that. When the kids get home it’s snacks, helping them with homework and cleaning up after dinner.

If she holds down a job, she has all of the above obligations plus getting to work and performing at her best all day. Most women learn to multitask out of necessity. It’s no wonder she feels anxious and frustrated, and yet she expects perfection from herself.

After her busy day, she and her partner may have a moment for conversation before the bedtime routine begins. Hopefully there may be time before bed to relax a little.

Even if she hasn’t any children at home, or a job, she is probably still very busy with volunteer work, church activities, taking care of her home and pets, and a social life. However, she can still find the time to meditate if she schedules it in.

Many women in our society put themselves and their needs last on their list of priorities. They feel that their children, partner, and household duties come first before they can consider time for their own pursuits. This is a mistake because if she doesn’t take care of herself and value her own needs, it will lessen her ability to care for the people she loves.

Your meditation practice will change the whole atmosphere in your home. It will make a big difference in the way you treat your family members. It will help you to be calmer in dealing with everyday problems. You’ll be kind, appreciative, loving, patient, slower to anger, and less critical. There will be less tension, and family members will be more relaxed and open to discussing problems.

If you value your personal time, you can fit meditation into your day somehow. It doesn’t require a lot of time. You might set the alarm clock a half hour earlier than usual, or you could find a quiet spot to be alone for 30 minutes just before bed. I do my sitting meditation in the morning as soon as I finish my breakfast and before I get started with my daily activities. I try to fit my writing meditation in after lunch or just before dinner when I have a few minutes.

The combination of daily sitting and writing meditation has made a tremendous difference in the quality of my life, and I know that it would do the same for you. Now, just going to the grocery store has become an enjoyable experience. Instead of being frustrated with a long line at the cash register, I talk with people including the cashier. Some of them have even become my friends.

In the past, simply driving to and from the store could be infuriating if I got behind a person driving 20 miles per hour. Now I have compassion for the driver and realize that there has to be a reason for this low speed.

While it may seem impossible for the busy woman to fit meditation into her schedule, it can be done. The time and effort involved is well worth the trouble.
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