Before or during a guided meditation session, you will notice these 4 basic elements or components from the time you start meditating till the end of the session. Keep in mind that all 4 might not be used in the same order or given equal priority, because the type of meditation you do or the purpose of the meditation varies from person to person. So, this is a general guideline.
Let’s go to the first one.
One of the key factors of a meditation practice is to be aware or mindful of our breathing. Is the breath heavy? Is it stressful? Is it one with your body? Even though we take this technique so often, for granted since it’s involuntary in our day to day lives, it is one of the most important aspects of meditation. It allows us to realize the effect it has on our body. We can rise above fear/anxiety/hatred/, stabilize ourselves, stay grounded, and make better decisions with a couple of deep breathes, and that is powerful.
The second element is to scan your body, it usually has a starting point, for example the head and an ending point, the toes. Everything in between is gently noticed, without any worry or judgment. What this allows us to do is find points in the body that accumulate stress or pain. Once we bring it out of hiding, by really allowing the mind to explore and connect with the body, we bring you as a being into total relaxation. Once you master this technique, you can automatically sense the body reacting to the stress you let in, and by doing so, make healthier choices before it’s too late.
As you are becoming aware of your thoughts, you are practicing the third element of mind-scaping. When we become accustomed to using almost 90% of our brains, at work and at home, it’s not at all surprising that we tend to over do it.
Negative thoughts are an outcome of over thinking. Being mindful of what thoughts enter and what thoughts leave your mind is the key to a happier life. The best way to do this is to look at them without any judgement. Once the thought comes, allow it to float away like a birds feather in the air.
Once you complete the 3 elements, your session will ask you to wind down. It’s only natural that after completing 3 important techniques of meditation, you mind will produce very few thoughts. When we force the mind to adapt to focus on breathing, or connecting with the body, it’s not distracted by problems of the past or the future. It is simply in the now.
This is my favourite part of meditation. It’s the part where I’m living in the present and my mind isn’t wandering in another room or lost in a forest, it is winding down with my body and no matter what challenging thoughts or words are thrown at it, it will simply remain grounded in my breath.