Stress is a silent killer. Most of us have experienced or witnessed this at some time or the other.. Stress affects everything that we do―neither can we work efficiently enough, nor can we take proper decisions. Adding to that, a person who is undergoing stress is prone to certain medical conditions like heart diseases, hypertension, and diabetes.
It has been found that using certain meditation techniques helps reduce, and with the passage of time, prevent stress from affecting us. It would therefore do us good to learn some easy meditation forms to help in dealing with stress effectively. If you've never done meditation before, it would do you good to begin with some basic exercises first.
- To begin with, choose a comfortable spot.
- Make sure that you're wearing loose and comfortable clothes.
- There should be no distractions when you sit for meditation. So keep the phone, TV, and other noise-making objects away.
- Sit on a rug or mat and fold your legs in the lotus position (the heels of both feet, under the thighs).
- Keep your back straight. Initially (before you get used to this), you can rest your back against a wall. But make sure that it is always straight. Give up this practice once you're able to sit without support.
- Sit quietly and close your eyes.
- Relax all the muscles of your body, one by one. Start with the muscles of the feet and move up till the head. Tell yourself that you can feel the stress ebbing away from each and every muscle. Slowly, you will start to feel yourself relaxing.
- Since you are new at this, it is understandable if you start to get distracted and your thought process shifts. Try to focus your attention on your breathing.
- Breathe deeply and evenly.
- Concentrate on the air being inhaled and exhaled, concentrating on the way the air fills you up and then leaves you.
- Do this for 20 minutes each day.
- Repeating this technique twice or thrice a day will only add to the benefits it reaps.
- It is said that meditating for 20 minutes per day (if done right) is as good as making up for 4 hours of rest.
Focus on Objects and Sound
- Place an object, like a mug, or candle before you.
- Now, start examining the object.
- Look at all its details―the shape, size, texture, and temperature.
- Concentrating and focusing your entire attention on the object at hand will help you build your focusing powers.
- Sometimes, having a word that you can say out loud and then focusing on all its nuances can help.
- Many people use the word 'Om' (Pronounced Oommm) to help concentrate better.
Create a Happy Place
This technique has been found to be very effective. Create a 'happy place' for yourself. Include all the things that make you happy and help you relax. Now, build situations around this and imagine it in all its entirety, covering all the nuances, and including as many senses as you can in this exercise.
More and more people these days are choosing to take up exercises like yoga and Tai-chi, which combine exercising and meditation, and thus lead to stress relief. These are a series of exercises that involve mastering several poses and postures in varied degrees of difficulty. They also include breathing workouts and techniques. When one focuses on these exercises, there is very little else that can distract you.
Meditation techniques for stress have been around for ages, but it is only now that we have begun to realize the far-reaching positive effects that they have on us. Being one with your mind and soul is truly the best way to relax and reduce stress. When you try these techniques, you'll experience it for yourself.