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The Mindfulness Series: 7 - Mindfulness In Meditation



In this series:

1 - What Is Mindfulness?

2 - Mindfulness In Times of Chaos

3 - Mindfulness And The Body

4 - Mindfulness And The Mind

5 - Mindfulness And The Spirit

6 - Mindfulness As A Growth Opportunity

7 - Mindfulness In Meditation

8 - Bring It All Together: Holistic Mindfulness For Your Entire Essence



The terms “mindfulness” and “meditation” are often used synonymously, but they are not exactly the same. There is a good reason they are often used together, though. You can use meditation to become more mindful and unlock all the benefits of mindfulness for yourself.


Mindfulness Vs. Meditation


Mindfulness is the act of being present in the moment. There are many ways to be mindful, such as through affirmations, a morning routine, or progressive muscle relaxation. It does not matter exactly what you do to be mindful, as long as you are being authentically in the present.


Meditation is a formal practice that involves being mindful, but it is only one example of mindfulness practice. People often associate meditation with a spiritual practice, but it can be used by religious and non-religious people alike to become healthier and more aware of the present.


When you think of mindfulness and meditation, recognize that meditation is a formal practice that involves being mindful, but mindfulness is not just meditation exclusively. Similarly, meditation is not just about mindfulness; there can be other goals of meditation in addition to mindfulness.


It may be helpful to think of mindfulness as a general outlook on life that can be observed through a variety of practices, such as formal meditation.


How To Practice Mindful Meditation


There are a variety of meditation styles to choose from. If you already meditate, then you can continue meditating in the style you are most comfortable with. For those who are new to meditation, here is a simple mindful meditation practice to try at home:

1. Set Aside Special Time


Life can be overwhelmingly full of deadlines, jobs, and errands. Set aside special time for your mindful meditation to ensure that your practice does not get swept away in the sea of tasks. All you will need is a little bit of time, a quiet space, and maybe a pillow or blanket to make the experience more comfortable.


2. Create Your Space


When it is time to do your practice, turn off all potential distractions. This includes setting your phone on airplane mode, dimming the lights, and telling family members to not enter your meditation space until you are finished.


If you want to use a pillow or blanket, place them where you intend to meditate. Though they are not necessary, they will make sitting more comfortable and relaxing. Also, set an alarm clock for however long you want the practice to be.


3. Observe The Moment


Sit down in your meditation spot and gently close your eyes. Allow your breath to flow naturally and let it deepen on its own. Take this time to observe the moment, setting the tone for your mindfulness practice.


Remind yourself that the point of this practice is not to quiet your mind. Instead, it is to pay attention to the moment, which includes your thoughts, feelings, and sensations. If you try to quiet these things, your practice will be entirely useless.

4. Be Kind To Your Thoughts And Let Them Come


Your mind is destined to wander during this time. Take the time to notice and appreciate your thoughts, no matter how big or small they may seem at the time. Be honest and kind to the thought as well, always remembering to talk to yourself the way you would talk to a stranger.


As soon as the thought comes to its natural end, come back to your present moment. In everyday life, it is easy to let our thoughts ramble like a never-ending ball of yarn. Prevent this by happening by coming back to your present.


5. Finish


Whenever your time is up, take the time to note if you feel any different. Doing this will allow you to learn from the meditation and do better in the future. If you need help understanding your feelings, take the time to journal about the experience, and really reflect on it.


Recap


Meditation is a great practice for your mindfulness. Even though it is not exactly the same as mindfulness, it is a tool to connect with the present to become more mindful in a formal setting. If you decide to meditate, remember to be kind to yourself, accept thoughts, and reflect on the experience. Doing so will maximize the effects of the meditation.


 

Calm.Peaceful.Inspired

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