This is what you would do if you went to a Mindfulness class or listened to a mindfulness app.
It’s a lovely way to practice Mindfulness as all you have to do is get comfortable, close your eyes and let another person’s voice guide you.
You simply visualize what they are saying and respond, as best you can, without any judgement about whether you are doing it right or wrong.
Acceptance of how things are in the present moment is the huge benefit of Mindfulness.
Image: Natalia Figuere
What to expect.
A typical relaxation meditation would take you through a body scan. After using your breathing to relax, your guide will then gently help you mentally scan your body, part by part, noticing any physical sensations and staying connected with your breath.
You might notice your shoulders have crept up, your toes or stomach feels tight, or even your teeth are clenched. Noticing these points and then using your breathing to let them go helps us to turn our attention inwards and prevent these unconscious physical habits becoming a long term problem for us.
Another common visualisation would be to ask you to think of, or even build in your imagination, a favourite spot that makes you calm and happy. For you that might be a beautiful beach, a huge bed with your favourite bedding on, a soft chair in front of a fireplace, or somewhere outside by water. The guide will help you relax and focus inwards by asking you to focus on the sensory details of that place. Can you smell the sea, for example? What does the sand feel like against your skin. Where on your body can you feel the heat from the fire? What can you hear in this place?
Image: Artem Bali
There are numerous guided relaxations and meditations to try. Pick one that feels right for you. Choose a voice you find comforting to listen to and that uses language that makes sense to you. If you can’t follow what they are saying or if they are annoying to listen to then they are not right for YOU.
Choose a different one.
Here are some of our favourite free meditation apps for your phone.