When I read or hear the word “meditation”, I and maybe you picture a person seated, cross-legged on top of a mountain under a clear blue sky, with evergreen trees cascading the landscape. Fresh air surrounds the person; they close their eyes and breathe in the clean, cool air in complete silence. As that person descends the mountain, we picture the person with a clear mind and becoming a “new” person.
Meditation is not about changing “who you are”, to better oneself, or to become a new person; it is an act of bringing awareness to a person’s sense of self. Practicing meditation can decrease stress and can alleviate mind clutter, producing clarity. It opens a path for us to see and identify core beliefs that we can change. The act of meditation is a form of training for the mind to pay attention. Through meditation, we can bring the brain to a mindful state that allows us to pay attention without judgement.
We can practice meditation on top of a mountain, but in reality, we can meditate anywhere, anytime. There are different forms and ways of meditation: walking meditations, nature walks or runs, video, audio, during and after a yoga practice, seated, body scans, and many more ways that may be specific and special to an individual. End result, we gain an awareness of one’s self, thoughts, feelings, emotions, and environment.
Meditation can be a useful practice to bring us into the now before starting a day, a meeting, a lecture, a task. Along with mediation, journaling is also a useful tool to bring our thoughts, feelings, memories, and sensations down to paper. Meditation is a tool for self-care.
Here are a few links of audio and video meditations: