I don’t remember how I started meditating. It wasn’t for spiritual or religious purposes. All I remember is trying, on and off, with varying degrees of commitment, to meditate for the past year. After recently reading a few accounts of meditation and how helpful it is, I started taking it seriously. And now, I meditate for a few minutes before going to bed every night.
In my opinion there are two aims of meditation:
- to clear your mind, and
- to reach find peace.
Clearing your mind is the easy part. Focus on your breathing and surroundings. Slowly push all those ‘what’s for dinner’ and ‘shiiit, that assignment is due tomorrow’ thoughts out of your head. Let them come and then let them slowly filter away, let them go.
Or, you could try to aggressively shuffle them out. Whatever works. Eventually, you’ll be left with a clear mind, no worries, just breathing in, and out. In, and out. In, and out.
Now, the harder part is finding peace. I’m using the word peace instead of enlightenment, because as I said, meditation isn’t spiritual or religious experience for me. When you’ve cleared my mind, something clicks into place, and it’s – it’s hard to describe. Things feel right and everything feels a little bit peaceful. And then, you open your eyes and you feel great, you feel euphoric.
I’ve only managed to achieve this once or twice, and I feel like this is what meditation should be, if you keep at it long enough.
Meditation is honestly, something I look forward to now. It’s integrated into my nightly de-stress and relax cycle, and it really helps me clear my head and focus.
I also haven’t felt the urge to buy patchouli and drink vegan detox shakes, so there’s that.
Header Image: Afonso Coutinho