o Time: Ideally you’ll want to meditate in the morning and again in the afternoon around 4:00 so it energizes you. Otherwise, if you do it in the evening and you’re tired, it’ll put you to sleep.
o Length: 10-20 minutes twice per day is a good goal to work towards. If that is too much, you can start with once a day for five minutes to practice and add more minutes and another session when you’re ready.
o Location: You can meditate anywhere you want and that works for you. Typically we recommend finding a quiet place with no distractions. The only place we don’t recommend is in the car while you’re driving. If you’re a passenger on a bus, train, car or airplane, that is okay though. In fact, some people who are well practiced can meditate for an entire flight.
o Position: Sitting is better than lying down so you avoid falling asleep. Try to sit up straight so you can breath deeply and if you’re in a chair, uncross your legs to keep your feet flat on the floor so you can stay rooted.
o Finger Placement: You can simply rest your hands on your lap or you can touch your index fingertip, your middle fingertip or your ring fingertip to your thumbs during meditation. You’ll notice your breathing patterns will be different with each position though so use a position that allows you to take nice deep breaths.
o Questions: If you have a problem that you’re having difficulty resolving, or something that is on your mind, feel free to pose the question before your meditation and then just let it go. The meditation will help you release the pressure and stress this problem has on you or may even provide you with a spontaneous solution during your session or afterwards.
o Mantra: A good mantra to repeat in your mind is saying “So” when you inhale and “Hum” when you exhale. You can just say this mentally so you can focus on your breath. As you get deeper into the meditation, you can gently let go of the mantra and allow your mind to reach a calm and peaceful place.
o Background Noise: Some people enjoy quiet during their meditation, and others enjoy background noise like soft instrumental music or nature sounds. Beginners also enjoy guided meditation recordings so their minds are less apt to wander into their thoughts. We have a free meditation available for you to try when you sign-up for our mailing list.
o Distracting Thoughts: The goal of your meditation is to stop thinking. Trying to silence a thought, is a thought. However, the awareness of a thought is not a thought. Leave your thoughts alone and let them drift away. They’ll gradually go away naturally because you’re not paying attention to them.
o Visualizations: Visualizing goals or problem solving is an active thought process that isn’t naturally part of meditation. They will be a distraction for you. If you want to, do so before you meditate, and then use your meditation to give your mind the rest that it needs.
o What To Expect: With practice you will be able to shift into meditation quickly because your mind learns how to reach that calm and peaceful place. As you are learning, it will take more time to allow your thoughts to dissipate, otherwise known as your “monkey mind”. Be patient with yourself and use different techniques that work for you until you’re able to consistently reach that quiet mindful place.
o Common Physical Sensations: Ticklishness, twitching, tingling, sleepiness, spontaneous movements, coolness, warmth, waves of energy and expansiveness are sometimes felt during meditation and are normal sensations. Simply continue with your meditation and just go with the flow. If you happen to fall asleep, that is okay because that is what your body needed at that time. If it continues happening, it’s important to maintain a healthy sleep schedule so you aren’t living an overtired life.
At CATA, we teach our students how to listen to their inner voice also known as your intuition, your instincts or your gut feeling. To learn more about your meditation practice, or developing your intuition, join our intuition development circle where we meditate as a group and then practice our intuition in pairs and small groups.
If you’re interested in a guided meditation, sign up for our newsletter below and we will send you a free audio file to practice at home.