I believe you can help reduce stress with meditation. Buddhists have always known the benefits of meditation, both on the body and the mind. Recently, scientific studies have been able to define the effects meditation as beneficial, when it comes to reducing stress, improving memory, and increased productivity. And who doesn’t want that?
Meditate for happiness
There are many ways meditation can improve your quality of life. Through calming your mind and being more present, you may find a sense of ease in how you react to stress and the daily pressures we experience in our lives.
To practice mindful meditation, find a quiet room with few distractions. Set a timer for five or 10 minutes to start, and sit comfortably on the floor or in a chair. Let yourself feel your whole body, and sink into a comfortable position. Then close your eyes, and focus on your breathing.
Learning to breathe properly during meditation is an essential step in attaining the beneficial effects of meditation.
Standardize your breathing technique. During meditation, some people inhale and exhale through their nose, some inhale through their nose and use their mouth to exhale and some both inhale and exhale through the mouth. Choose whichever you prefer, but stick to it with every breath you take.
Regulate your breathing. Breathe at consistent intervals, establishing a rhythm. With practice, this rhythm should become second nature to you.
For beginners, it can help to count your breaths. Count one breath in, one breath out, and continue through 10 breaths, then return to one again. This process helps connect your mind to your breath, especially when thoughts can sometimes break your concentration. Every time your thoughts wander, start back at one. Eventually, you’ll be able to follow your breath without counting.
As you continue your practice and develop an ability to settle more with the breath, you’ll become more aware of the state of your body — the tensions it carries, its energy, its pain — and sensations that your busy life may have kept you from noticing previously. In the same way you’ve focused attention on your breath, you’ll be able to gently move that focus to tension and release it.
Meditation is all about habit, and practice. Like any other skill worth learning, it takes time and hard work, but the payoff can be huge.