Mind & Spirit

Meditation basics for instant stress relief

Author: Canadian Living

Mind & Spirit

Meditation basics for instant stress relief

When you're rushing to keep up with personal relationships, work and other important obligations, you can often end up feeling frazzled and frustrated. If you're craving serenity, take a meditation break that will leave you calm and ready to face the world with renewed energy. Read on for meditation basics to get you started.

A five-minute meditation session
Here are some tips that can help you to achieve effective meditation:

Seek a proper guide or instructor -- Finding an effective instructor can help you to avoid frustration, as meditation can be quite detailed. Archana Jaiswal, a corporate wellness coach, recommends contacting a professional in order to select a personalized mantra. This is a word or a series of words that is often repeated throughout a meditation session. When choosing a mantra, she says, "It's important to have a connection to your source of strength."

Analyze lifestyle habits -- What you eat and drink could affect your ability to meditate. Jaiswal cautions: "Consuming alcohol, stimulants or junk food depletes energy stores."

Focus on your breath -- Your breathing can be the single most powerful element of meditation, Jaiswal says. It's important to breathe from the diaphragm: When inhaling, instead of taking shallow breaths, fill your lungs with air, allowing your stomach to rise. Then exhale, allowing your stomach to lower.

Turn your senses inward -- Concentrate on your heart beating or your breathing. Although you may be tempted to pay attention to your surroundings, meditation is about quieting the mind. "Picture a quiet pond," Jaiswal says. "When there's stillness within, you get a magnificent reflection."

A good meditation session will likely help you to feel more balanced, in control and better equipped to focus on your tasks. The feel-good effects of meditation can be applied to various aspects of our daily lives and Jaiswal recommends meditating in order to achieve deep and lasting joy. "Meditation gives the right answers so we can achieve harmony," Jaiswal says. "It works on the mind function for all successes in life."

Learn how meditation can boost your brain health.

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Mind & Spirit

Meditation basics for instant stress relief