Simple Morning Meditation for Beginners
What is Meditation?
Many believe that meditation is an activity exclusively linked to Eastern religions. This is far from being the case, as meditation is to engage in a mental exercise such as focus and concentration with the purpose of achieving a heightened level of awareness.
Others believe that (morning) meditation is done only by sitting quietly with a point of focus. That is only one type of meditation.
The most popular types of meditation:
- In quiet meditation, one remains seated and focuses on one sound, one word, one spot or color in their line of sight, and releases their thoughts as they occur;
- In guided meditation, a leader will guide them through a meditation involving listening to the voice and imagining the things they suggest;
- In active meditation, there is a movement, most often repetitive, that brings the focus to one thing, one action or spot, these including reading, knitting, running, and several other activities.
The key to building and maintaining a meditation practice is to find the right type of meditation that fits your needs, whether it be active, guided, color, or sound.
If we interpret meditation as “focusing on one thing,” we could say that reading an interesting book, writing an important e-mail, listening to your favorite music, or having a conversation with your philosophy teacher are all forms of meditation. But in these cases, we lack the purpose of achieving awareness or enlightenment.
We can achieve a heightened level of awareness by using meditation techniques that fit into four categories:
- Focusing: We practice this basic technique by focusing on a particular object. The goal would be to stop thinking. Mastering this technique prepares you for the other techniques.
- Thinking: Instead of focusing on an object to stop thinking, we will focus on a particular subject or topic, like a problem or trauma you are dealing with. The goal is to focus on this problem to become able to bring positive changes into your life. The main goal of this technique is to practice a positive attitude.
- Visualizing: While you meditate, your mind is your most powerful tool. When we visualize, we create images in our mind, and by focusing, we will be able to change our life by improving our attitudes, modify our reactions, and to chase our dreams. This meditation technique can be challenging for beginners.
- Experiencing: This advanced technique is part of a process where you will have to open all your senses by focusing on each experience.
Each meditation uses at least one of the above-mentioned techniques. Never forget that these techniques are your tools and not the goals you have to achieve. Your ultimate goal has to be to become a happier person by being more aware of your surroundings.
Why should You Consider Meditation?
Meditation is a great way to calm the mind and allow focus and clarity. When practiced on a regular basis it has been shown to improve concentration and mood and can help to start the day strong and focused when practiced in the mornings before starting the day.
So, what are the main benefits of meditation?
- Improve your health;
- Develop insights into your own life;
- Become sober-minded;
- Resolve psychological issues;
- Cultivate mind, body, and soul awareness;
- Moving towards emotional balance;
- Learn to calm down.
Is there a Best Time of the Day to Meditate?
The general answer to this question is that the most popular times to meditate are before bed, to calm the mind and prepare the mind and body for sleep, and in the morning to prepare for the day.
Morning meditation can help to wake the mind and prepare for the challenges of the day, bringing the thoughts into focus and starting with a clear mind. This can bring clarity of thought and improve productivity throughout the day, as well as train the mind how to calm and bring it back to focus when something becomes overwhelming.
The precise answer to this question would have been the ambrosial hours, from ninety minutes before sunrise to forty-five minutes before dawn. Around this time, you will be rested, and you can use fresh, calm energy to focus on meditation with nothing to disturb you, thanks to the stillness and dim light.
This doesn’t mean that you have to sacrifice hours of sleep to meditate. This only means that it is best to meditate first time in the day. If you don’t have time in the morning, then meditate in the evening before going to bed.
Do not make your lack of time an excuse to skip meditation. Remember, meditating at any time of the day is better than not meditating at all, and everybody has the time to meditate at least ten minutes a day.
How Often Should You Meditate?
If you are serious about meditation, you should practice it daily.
If you want to achieve good results in a reasonable amount of time, it is advised to meditate each day around the same hour and at the same place.
Choose one (or a few meditation types) and stick with them until they become part of your daily rituals.
The long-lasting positive effects of meditation come little by little. There is no fast way to enlightenment.
This can help to slow the body’s reactions to stress and anxiety as well, including the increased rate of breathing and the heart rate, calming the feelings along with the racing thoughts.
How long Should You Meditate?
There is no precise amount of time that you should meditate to get the right results. For beginners, five to ten minutes of meditation would be enough. As you will notice, some beginners will even find it difficult to clear their minds and stay focused for one single minute.
The ultimate goal of meditation is not to be able to meditate for a very long time but rather to not have the need to meditate anymore.
You need to understand that you can’t actually “meditate” as meditation is a state of “not-doing.” It is a state where you are aware, and if you remain aware all the time, you would ultimately enter enlightenment. This is a permanent state. This means that once you enter this state, you can’t come out of it anymore.
To give you an example, according to Buddhist texts, Gautama Buddha meditated for forty-nine days under a Bodhi Tree (ficus religiosa) in India before attaining enlightenment (Bodhi).
Where Should You Meditate?
If you choose to meditate indoors, it is important that you separate your meditation from your other daily activities. You do this by making a meditation corner in your house or by creating an entire meditation room. If you have no space at all, you can select a particular cushion or chair that you will put on a particular spot of your house each time you start your meditation ritual.
Characteristics of our indoor meditation space:
- Your personal “privy place”
- Natural light;
- Fresh Air;
Any quiet place outdoors that inspires you can be a nice fit for your daily meditation
Stop Making Excuses, Start a Morning Meditation Practice
- Start today, not tomorrow
- Go easy on yourself; Rome hasn’t been built in one day
- You don’t need to make time for meditation as a few minutes a day will do
- If you have problems focusing in the beginning, this is normal, and it will get easier by practicing
- If you don’t like sitting still, don’t worry. There are a lot of types of meditation: standing meditation, meditation laying down, walking meditation, running meditation, swimming meditation, eating meditation…
Benefits of Morning Meditation
Regular practice of morning meditation can bring many benefits to both the body and the mind. It allows control over the thoughts that enter the mind, creates a calm and peaceful mind, and can be started in as little as five minutes every morning. Finding the form of meditation that works best for you, is the key to creating a maintainable morning meditation practice.
Morning meditation allows you to:
- Wake up early;
- Take a daily Me-moment;
- Start your day with clarity and focus;
- Install a buffer moment between your quiet sleep and your hectic life;
- Lower your stress levels and increase happiness;
- Set up a routine or ritual;
- Clear your Mind.
Preparing for Morning Meditation
Sit on the ground with your legs closed and stretched in front of you. Try to touch your toes. Go as far as you can and relax. Repeat this exercise a few times.
Now make a V-form with your stretched legs and try to touch your toes on your left foot, then try to touch your toes on your right foot. Try to go as far as you can. Repeat this exercise a few times.
To finish, pull the top of your right foot towards you with both hands. You are allowed to bend your leg. Hold a few seconds and relax. Repeat the same movement with your left leg. Do this exercise a few times.
Lay on the ground with your legs stretched and your arms straight next to your body. Your hand palms are facing up.
Focus on relaxing each part of your body, going from your toes up to the top of your head.
Once you feel completely relax, you can sit straight and start your 10 minute morning meditation.
10 Minute Morning Meditations
When beginning a meditation practice, finding five to ten minutes each day for quiet meditation is enough. This can be as simple as taking a few minutes when you awake before starting the day, and as you become more comfortable with the practice, you can extend the amount of time you spend meditating.
Let’s take a look at six 10 minute morning meditations:
1. Greet the Day Meditation
- Be ready to begin just before the sun comes up.
- Find yourself a spot where you face the East.
- Take a few deep breaths.
- Focus on the sky upon you and the earth beneath you.
- Focus on the sounds of nature.
- Feel your own energy.
- Feel your body in harmony with nature.
- Feel the energy flow from the earth and the air towards your body.
- Contemplate how the sun rises slowly and greet the day.
- If you feel like it, you can sit down for longer than 10 minutes.
- Only stand up when you feel ready to start your day.
2. Greet the Sun Meditation
- Wait until dawn.
- Stand with your feet slightly apart and let your hands hang loose at your sides.
- Inhale and stretch your hands above your head.
- Bend back as far as you can.
- As you exhale, bend over and place your hands next to your feet.
- Your hands both remain on the ground. You put your right leg back as you inhale. Then put your left leg back as you exhale.
- You are now in a push-up position with your arms fully extended.
- Hold this position and inhale.
- Exhale and lower yourself. Only your hands and feet touch the ground.
- Inhale again and press, bending at the waist and raising your torso with your arms.
- Exhale and raise your hips. You look between your straight legs.
- Inhale and put your right foot forward.
- Exhale and put your left foot forward.
- Inhale and stand straight while extending your arms above your head.
- Exhale and lower your arms.
- Repeat these movements until you reach 10 minutes.
3. Thought Clouds Meditation
- Sit in the lotus position.
- Make sure your back is straight, your shoulders are relaxed, and you are looking straight ahead.
- Focus on a meter in front of you.
- Breathe normally through your nose and avoid chest breathing as much as possible.
- Make sure all parts of your body are relaxed.
- Start counting your breaths with each exhalation.
- When you have counted to ten, start over.
- If thoughts come to mind, label them “thinking” and go right back to counting your breaths.
- Meditate this way for ten minutes.
- After about a week, you should begin to notice that your mind is calming down, you are becoming more flexible, and you are able to distance yourself from your thoughts.
4. Tree Meditation
- Go outside and find a calm place in your garden, in a park or a forest. There must be trees.
- Walk quietly between the trees without focusing on a particular tree.
- Wait for a tree to pick you by getting your attention.
- Stand as close to the tree with your back as possible without touching the tree.
- Relax by gently breathing in and out with the tree. Feel the airflow through your body until you no longer feel the difference between you and the tree.
- Now stand with your back against the tree while closing your eyes. Imagine that your spine is the trunk of the tree and a lot of positive energy flows into your body through the trunk.
- Keep this on for ten minutes. Now return to your own body in your thoughts. Thank the tree.
- You will feel calm and have released a lot of stress.
5. Breathing Meditation
- Sit in a lotus position or sit up straight in a chair or lie down with your arms parallel to your sides.
- Shoulders relax. Chin straight.
- Breathe normally through your nose and use abdominal breathing.
- Check your posture and make sure all parts of your body are relaxed.
- Start counting your breaths each time you exhale. Do this until you have counted to ten.
- When you have counted to ten, start again.
- Thoughts will come to you, but you ignore them and let them go.
- End the session after about ten minutes.
- You will learn to focus and manage your anxiety.
6. Bodyscan Meditation
- Stretch out on the floor or on your bed.
- Your arms at your sides and your palms up.
- Breathe about twenty times using abdominal breathing. Release tensions.
- You focus on every part of your body, starting with your toes to the top of your head. You wonder if you have recently experienced pain or unusual feelings in any body part. If this is the case, make a mental note of it.
- When you reach the top of your head, end the body scan and write down the problems you discovered. If you think that the physical problems could be serious, see a doctor. In other cases, you may decide to adjust your diet or maintain a more active lifestyle.
- A full-body scan meditation takes about ten minutes on average and will help you to be in touch with your body and its needs in the long term.
“Your goal is not to battle with the mind, but to witness the mind.”