Meditation Tips for Beginners
PUBLISHED: Monday, June 8, 2020

Meditation Tips for Beginners

Meditation—the act of sitting and reflecting on your own thoughts—has been around for thousands of years. For most of us, the word conjures thoughts of religious practitioners like Buddhist or Taoist monks sitting in something like the lotus position and chanting to themselves. But that’s certainly not the only way to meditate. The practice can be a silent, solitary experience or it can involve a live or recorded guide. You can sit in a cross-legged position, or almost any other that’s comfortable. Mindfulness and reflection are the important parts of meditation. 

For those curious about meditation or just beginning on the path to a more mindful routine, we have some tips you may want to consider:

  1. Make meditation part of your routine. Like most other physical and mental exercises, you get the most out of meditation when you do it consistently. Set aside the same amount of time—10 or 15 minutes is plenty to start—every day and try to follow a regular pattern. Some people like to meditate at lunch or before they go to bed because it ties their practice to something else that’s already a part of their routine.
  2. Sit in a chair with an upright back. If you’re an experienced yoga practitioner then you can ignore this piece of advice, since you’re probably able to maintain good posture in the lotus position for 10 or 15 minutes at a time. Everyone else should use a chair or seat with an upright back. Good posture is key to mindfulness and bodily awareness; a chair with an upright back helps new meditators maintain that posture.
  3. Set clear goals and expectations for your meditation. Meditation can help us relax, calm our emotions, solve problems, and much more. Decide what you want meditation to do for you and stick to those goals—sometimes they’re mutually exclusive. If you want to meditate to relax, don’t let your mind wander into problem-solving mode. If your goal is to calm your emotions, don’t also try to reflect on ways to improve your interpersonal relationships.

These tips are useful first steps into to the world of meditation, but they’re not set in stone. As you grow in your meditative practice, you’ll find what does and doesn’t work for you. The practice is, after all, highly personal.