As meditation who is not a beginner, we can’t help but ask ourselves, am I meditating the right way or how to meditate correctly? This question especially bothers us when we can’t see the benefits even after meditating for a long time. Even with all the guides available online, there are still many unanswered questions. But it’s going to change today.
This blog post covers how to meditate correctly and the signs you are meditating the right way. That’s not all!
You are also going to get answers to all the common questions. For example, what should I do if I experience tingling and itching when meditating? How long do I need to meditate before I can see the benefits? How should I keep my hands during meditation? Am I a bad meditator if I can’t control my thoughts? And many other questions.
Before we get to all that, it’s necessary to understand what meditation is, not by definition but by purpose and what it means for us as human and spiritual beings.
Try this spiritually advance guided meditation to experience the effect of a good meditation session.
Table of contents
What is the value of meditation?
The human mind and body have their complexities, and it isn’t easy to keep the health of our minds in check. We can rely on healthy diets and workouts for our bodies. However, what we feed our minds is getting out of hand because we can’t control all the information we come across. What we can do is strengthen our minds with meditation.
There are various types of meditation that can help us in many different ways. So, Meditating can not only act as a workout for the mind but also as a detoxification tool.
In addition to that, on spiritual levels, meditation helps us to protect our energy. Help us grow and acquire the wisdom to navigate life.
Step-by-step guide on how to meditate correctly
Meditation can’t be categorized as easy or difficult because everyone is going to experience it differently. Some might find it easier than others after understanding the correct method. If you are in a quiet place right now, then try following these steps, or you can always come back later.
#1 – Get comfortable.
Finding a comfortable and quiet place will not only help you focus easily but will also make you feel safe. Make sure that no one can bother you for the next couple of minutes. Interruptions during meditation can cause you to feel anxious and worried the whole time.
You can lie down or sit upright for meditation; make sure that your spine is straight and your back supported. Maintaining a good posture is not a necessity, but it will help you stay somewhat alert and prevent falling asleep.
#2 – Keep a timer handy.
Keeping a timer allows you to track how much time you’ll spend meditating. You will not be worried about losing time or thinking about how much time has passed. Without a timer, you might not be able to focus because somewhere in the back of your mind, there can be a sense of hurry.
There’s also one mistake that people make, using a loud or unpleasant and loud timer sound. So, lower the timer volume and pick a pleasant sound. That way, you can still take your time to gently get out of the meditative state when the timer goes off.
#3 – Gently close your eyes.
Now that you’ve taken care of the place, comfort, and timing of your meditation session. The next thing is to close your eyes gently. Keeping your eyes open can make it more challenging to relax and focus. It is also an important step if you want to turn your attention inwards. Closing our eyes also helps us focus more on our feelings than just being aware of our thoughts.
If you don’t want to close your eyes immediately, you can focus on any object in front of you without blinking. After a while, your eyes will automatically start to feel heavy.
#4 – Take a few deep breaths.
Take deep breaths with audible sighs to help you relax, and it also helps us center ourselves. It instantly lowers stress and allows you to be at ease. It is the step that prepares you for the rest of the meditation. This makes it convenient for you to draw attention to your breath.
You can breathe at your own natural pace, or you can inhale, hold and exhale on the count of four. Counting will help you breathe in rhythm with focus, and it will also engage your mind.
#5 – Focus your attention on your breath.
Focusing on your breath will keep the mind from wandering. Paying attention to every detail of what’s happening while you breathe will keep your mind still.
Take note of how it feels when you inhale and exhale. Notice how your stomach and chest expand when breathing in and contract when you exhale.
#6 – Observe how it feels just to be present.
This step is the core of meditation. This step trains our minds to stay present. Usually, we love to relive the past or plan for the future. Sometimes a few feelings which you were unaware of can surface. They can be good or neutral and unpleasant sometimes. But by being present in your awareness, you can also learn to address those feelings better.
Observe your feelings as you continue to focus on your breath. Notice the feeling of being there in the moment and the present being the most important thing right now. Observe how it feels to “just be” in this very moment.
#7 – Become aware of your attention and thoughts.
As time passes, thoughts are inevitable. The mind will start to think about the day or what is next. It is entirely okay to have these thoughts when meditating. What’s not okay is to let yourself float away with those thoughts. If you are unaware and continue to think, it defeats meditation’s purpose.
Becoming aware of your attention drifting and thoughts doesn’t mean you need to force yourself not to think. Just becoming aware of your thoughts & being able to pull away is enough.
#8 – Be an observer of your wandering mind.
You can always choose to bring your attention back and focus on your breath. It can seem a little difficult at first. If you continue to bring your attention back and it continues to wander, it can get frustrating after a while.
So instead, you can choose to observe your thoughts and focus on the good that comes with them. On many occasions, you might get a brilliant idea or vision while meditating. Observing your thoughts and feelings can also help you understand yourself much better.
#9 – Open your eyes when you feel ready.
It’s important that you gently get back from meditation. If not, it can shock your body and mind as all your senses are focused inwards during the deep meditative state.
When you feel you are done meditating, and you are ready to open your eyes. Rubbing your palm together and then putting them over your eyes before you open them will help you gently get back from meditation. If you open your eyes right away, it can put a slight strain on your eyes.
#10 – Repeat a few positive affirmations.
During deep meditation, our mind reaches theta state, and this is the time when you are just returning to your physical senses. Our minds are more open to affirmations and suggestions. You can repeat affirmations aloud by yourself, or you can use affirmation audio as you get back from the deep meditation slowly.
You can affirm anything you’d like. For example, “I am attracting positivity and inspiration,” “I feel more at peace each time I meditate,” and “I am becoming the happiest and best version of myself”. You can also affirm anything specific to your goals for health, wellness, money, productivity, etc.
#11 – Notice how you feel.
It’s important to stay still and notice how you feel because it will help you understand how this meditation session has affected you. If you feel better and more at ease, you did everything right. If you feel anxious, then you can try guided meditation instead of trying to meditate all by yourself. So take a few moments to notice and observe your feelings regardless if you did affirmations or not.
Sometimes suppressed feelings can resurface, so that’s also fine. Give yourself some time. Take a few more deep breaths if you still feel overwhelmed.
As you practice daily, it will become easier to focus. Initially, it can sometimes feel overwhelming because you are trying to get used to the feeling of being present with just yourself. As you will practice more, your mind will wander less and less, and the minutes of peace and silence will become longer.
But how will you know you are practicing meditation the correct way?
Here are some signs you are meditating correctly
As important as it’s to learn how to meditate, it’s equally important to know if you are meditating successfully. It shouldn’t just become a means of temporary relaxation. Feeling relaxed, peaceful, and at ease temporarily doesn’t mean your meditation is successful. If you see growth, improved focus, and more emotional and mental resilience, that’s when it’s a success. Let’s check out more signs of successful meditation practice:
- An increasing sense of calm during the day
You feel more balanced, and a sense of calm has started to take the place of anger and resentment. Research shows that meditating 20 minutes a day can not only reduce anger but also protect your body from the effect of anger.
- You start to respond instead of reacting.
This is another sign that can tell you your meditation sessions are working well for you. We often react impulsively to many things during the day. If you have started to respond to things rather than reacting, then you are progressing well.
- Reduced frequency of headaches And Body Aches
This can only result from getting rid of the prolonged stress and tension. Chronic stress is one of the major causes of headaches, muscle tension, and pain. Meditation can significantly help with that. Healing and reduction in physical symptoms of prolonged stress can be recognized easily compared to emotional and mental effects.
- You have become more aware and thoughtful.
By practicing meditation every day, we are training our mind’s awareness muscle. With consistency, that constant mind chatter automatically reduces. You just don’t think; you start to become more thoughtful and aware of everything. You become aware of your surroundings, feelings, and the things that are happening.
- You feel more connected to yourself.
The connection to your inner self becomes stranger. You feel more open to connecting with others. The feeling of void and disconnect with yourself starts to disappear and get replaced with happiness.
- Your perception of the world is shifting.
When you meditate correctly, you will notice that the world around you is not feeling the same. You might start to see and notice small but beautiful things. You will also be able to feel a lot more compassion for the world than before. Everything might feel unexplainably different at first, but it’s because of the shift in our perception.
- Increased trust In Intuition.
To be able to experience this change can take the longest for many people. Some people are going to be naturally more connected to their intuition, and some are not. Intuition is something that we can only learn to trust more by trusting it more. If you are doing it right, through meditation, that intuitive voice becomes stronger and more recognizable.
Now let’s address some more questions on meditating correctly:
What does meditation feels like?
It is a completely individual experience, and it also depends on the type of meditation you are doing. Most people report experiencing very light, at peace, and calm during and after meditating. Deep relaxation is the first thing that you will notice as you start to meditate. Then it will progress from there to a sense of eternal fearless calm.
What should I do if I experience tingling and itching when meditating?
It can automatically go away after a few seconds because, at most, it’s our mind’s way of distracting us. If it doesn’t, then you can scratch a little. If you continue to focus and meditate, that slight itch or weird feeling on the skin will surely go away.
How long do I need to meditate before I can see the benefits of meditation?
It is going to be different for everyone. Many people claim to see benefits and health improvements within a week of starting to meditate. Some say they don’t feel any different even after months. Focusing on getting the meditation right is more important. There’s a possibility that the expectation can take away from the whole experience. Being patient and meditating consistently can be very rewarding in ways not even noticeable sometimes.
How should I keep my hands during meditation?
There are actually various hand poses with many different benefits associated with them. These hand poses are also called Meditation Mudras. One of the most popular is “Gyan Mudra”. This is also the simplest one. You just need to place both your hands facing upward on your knees. Then make a circle by touching your index finger to the base of your thumb. Keep the fingers straight.
Am I a bad meditator if I can’t control my thoughts?
Not at all; you don’t need to control your thoughts while you meditate. You just need to become aware of them as they come. You can always choose to return your focus. It’s okay even if you are not immediately able to recognize you are thinking and talking to yourself.
What if I can’t maintain the proper posture?
You don’t have to be strict with maintaining your posture. If you feel that sitting upright the whole time is not possible for you, then you can always use a chair that has back support. Sitting upright or lying down with spin straight and well-aligned is an important part of the meditation discipline. If you can’t sit straight, then it’s okay to start however you can.
Even though there are not many set rules for how to meditate, it is still important to understand the basics of it. The more often you will meditate, the easier it will be to understand what works best for you. The way you meditate is perfect for you if you are experiencing consistent progress and improvements. If you still have doubts, then the Enhanced Meditation app has plenty of guided meditations to help you enhance your experience.