“Stress is nothing,” said Manuel, the owner of the bar “El Paraíso de Ribes” in a small village near Barcelona.
I sighed with resignation, and focused on my computer screen. I was about to write about stress and meditation, and he says it’s nothing!
What Is Stress?
People generally use the word “stress” when they feel overwhelmed by life, work, and other obligations. Many often think they won’t be able to cope with “everything”, and the more they worry, the less they believe they can handle any specific situation. The circle of pressure keeps getting narrower until it finally explodes.
Anything seen as a challenge or a threat to your well-being is a stress. But imagine how boring and pointless your life would be without any stress at all! Some kinds of stresses are actually good for your health and well-being. However, there are a lot of unhealthy stresses out there:
- Family problems
- Financial matters
- Job issues
- Bad traffic
- Noisy neighbors
And when we’re stressed these are the things that normally happen to us:
- Blood pressure rises
- Breathing becomes more rapid
- Digestive system slows down
- Pulse rises
- Immune system goes down
- Muscles become tense
- We do not sleep
Should you be doing something to fight this madness? Absolutely. So it’s about time to learn more about meditation, one of the most important relaxation techniques available to fight off unhealthy stress and the havoc it can wreak on your body.
“Meditation is the dissolution of thoughts in Eternal awareness or Pure consciousness without objectification, knowing without thinking, merging finitude in infinity.”
“The affairs of the world will go on forever. Do not delay the practice of meditation.”
“In the beginning you will fall into the gaps in between thoughts – after practicing for years, you become the gap.”
Some people think as meditation as doing nothing, but in reality meditation will help you to get more things done.
Good Reasons To Meditate
Meditation boosts your health (increases immune function and decreases pain), happiness (decreases depression, anxiety and stress), and social life (increases your general sense of connection to others and zaps feelings of loneliness).
Meditation supercharges your productivity (in the same way that taking a break in between your working hours). It will raise your focus and attention levels, improves your ability to multitask, your memory function, and your ability to be creative and think outside the box.
Meditation improves your self-control (increasing your ability to regulate your emotions and your ability to introspect). It gives you perspective. By quietly observing your mind, you realize how many things you can do in your daily life for improving both yourself and the life of people around you.
How To Start Meditating
Basically, meditation’s objective is to raise your consciousness or energetic “vibrations”.
And here are some tips to get your Meditation mode ON:
- Choose the ambience that suits you best: calm music or silence.
- Find your meditation spot. Be sure it’s clean and free from external disturbances. It is crucial you feel safe and at peace, and don’t feel compelled to get that dust bunny in the corner while you’re trying to relax.
- Sit comfortably. Don’t worry if you’re not seated in a fancy lotus position you saw in some meditation guide. There is no “right way” to do it, so find the position that fits you best. Keep in mind that whatever posture you choose, sitting upright will help the flow of energy most.
- Clear your mind, breathe slowly, and relax.
- Quietly observe. See what is going on in your mind. What are you thinking? What are you feeling? Meditate as long as you want, until you feel refreshed and good to go (no more than 30 minutes is recommended for meditation beginners).
- End your meditation, returning slowly to the normal state (become aware of the reality that surrounds you and of your physical body first, and then open your eyes and get used to the regular world once again).
- Be thankful for what you have. Live.