Stressful thoughts can create in your mind a continuous loop of worry that disrupts your inner peace and general wellbeing. However, the age-old practice of meditation is known to bring about a state of consciousness that relieves your mind from worries and anxieties.
To meditate to clear your mind, let your mind focus on a single thing, like your breath or an inner vision. Allow your thoughts to come and go unhindered; accept them but keep focusing on your vision. Repeat the process if you lose focus. Do this for even five minutes while seated or lying down.
Having a clear mind means that you can focus. What’s more, it means that you worry less since your mind is attuned to the present rather than your past or the future. For a detailed guide on how to clear your mind with meditation as well as an exploration of the resultant benefits, keep reading.
The Elements of Meditation
Doing meditation as a regular practice is not easy. However, if you can incorporate it into your daily life, you will begin to experience mindfulness, a clearer head, and a more positive outlook towards life.
Different meditation types exist, but almost all of them contain four similar elements. These are:
- A location that is quiet with minimal distractions
- A snug posture – sitting down, lying down, or even walking
- Focused attention, for instance, specific words, objects, or breathing sensations
- An open-minded attitude – allowing distractions and letting them go in a natural, non-judgemental way
Now that you understand what meditation entails, let’s get into the details of how you can use meditation to get a clear mind.
How to Meditate
- Choose whatever position works for you or feels most relaxing. You can sit still, lie down, or try movement meditation. The latter entails a slow walk while you focus on your steps and the general surroundings. You can also indulge in slow yoga and move as you follow your breath, as shown in the video below:
- Ensure that whatever object or scenario you decide to focus your mind on is relaxing, calming, and won’t cause your mind to wander. Try and focus on the sights, sounds, and smells that your point of focus evokes. For example, if you are focusing on the sea: imagine the sounds of waves crashing ashore, see the tide ebb and flow, and feel the water splashing into your face and the sand under your feet.
- Pay attention to the thoughts that go through your mind. However, don’t let yourself be drawn into your thoughts; observe them and notice the patterns, if any. If you find it difficult to focus due to a wandering mind, try active meditation. This tasks your mind in a way that takes up all your attention, so there’s little room for other thoughts to occupy.
Ultimately, meditation is a combination of concentration and awareness. As you focus on your breath or a specific object, observe any sensations, feelings, or thoughts you may have.
Be gentle with yourself and don’t force the practice. Meditation shouldn’t feel like a chore; rather, it should be enjoyable.
As you engage in the practice, follow the tips below for maximum benefits:
- Start small – even 5 -10 minutes offer you tangible results
- Choose a quiet place and allow yourself to relax
- Allow your thoughts to come and go freely
- Be still but ensure that you are comfortable
- Choose a specific time for your practice: upon waking up or before you retire at night
- Close your eyes and recite a mantra
- Don’t try too hard: if it’s not working, try again the following day
Do note that mind-clearing meditation is a practice you can indulge in throughout your day. This means you can split it into brief sessions of 3 – 4 minutes in the morning, noon, and evening.
Nevertheless, if you find it a challenge to begin meditating on your own, sign up for meditation classes in your locality. Alternatively, you can use a meditation app or follow guided meditation like the one below:
What Are the Benefits of Regular Meditation?
Some of the benefits you get from meditation are instantaneous – like a calm mind – while others come with time and practice. Nonetheless, to experience any of the positive outcomes, you need to be consistent in this activity.
Helps Relieve Stress
The strain and stress from daily life can overwhelm your mind to the point of impacting your health. The resultant health implications are serious and include anxiety, depression, and in some cases, cardiovascular diseases.
Chronic stress can cause increased heart rate, blood pressure, and high cholesterol levels. What’s more, it can disrupt your immunity, sap your energy, and cause insomnia. Yet, when your mind and body are relaxed, the body ceases to release stress hormones.
Meditation helps to calm the mind by activating your body’s natural ability to relax. As such, it releases the stress from your mind and body and provides you with a deeper understanding of how your mind and emotions work.
It also enhances your mental health by increasing your awareness, sense of clarity, and compassion for others.
Thus, with regular meditation, you can train your body to relax on demand, hence manage stress more effectively.
Helps Promote Sleep
Most people struggle with insomnia at different points in their lives. Meditation before bed could help you fall asleep faster and for longer. Consistent meditation also helps to arrest or redirect the runaway thoughts that often contribute to a lack of sleep.
Moreover, it helps relax your body, releases tension, and allows you to achieve a peaceful state, making it easier for you to fall asleep.
Exploring your inner self can be both scary and exciting. However, the peace, calm, and clarity you experience in your life extends to your relationships and is worth the uncomfortable feeling of deep vulnerability.
Besides, with enhanced mindfulness, it becomes a lot easier to improve your relationships and reduce conflicts through acceptance.
Anxiety comes about due to focusing too much on either the past or the future. Meditation allows you to become more present by quieting your overactive brain. It also encourages your mind to be intentional about focusing on the now.
Improves Your Memory
Did you know that meditation can help improve your memory and how you process visual information in just four days? A 2013 review of three studies indicates that it might also slow down, stall, or reverse brain changes caused by normal aging.
As a form of brain exercise, meditation builds up and rewires the brain to enhance positive attributes such as decision making and focus. It also helps to reduce negative traits, including fear and stress.
Therefore, it’s possible to change your brain in a positive and enduring manner, and the key is to take control of your mind.
Improves Your General Well Being
Meditation is beneficial to your health as it may be helpful in a wide range of health conditions, including high blood pressure, pain, and some psychological disorders.
Results from several studies show that practicing meditation could help reduce blood pressure, insomnia, anxiety, depression, and the symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome.
Meditation is a healthy practice for the mind and body that focuses on the relationship between the brain, body, mind, and behavior. It’s useful in:
- Enhancing a sense of calm and physical relaxation
- Improving general health and wellbeing
- Boosting mental focus and psychological balance
- Coping with ill-health
While it’s generally considered safe, it’s always advisable to consult your doctor before embarking on meditation. Besides, if you have a physical condition, it might hinder your ability to participate in meditative practices that involve movement.
If you take control of your mind, you will change your thoughts and, eventually, your life positively. I hope this article inspires you to begin practicing meditation, unclutter your mind, and raise your consciousness to a new level.
- NCCIH – NIH: Meditation: In Depth
- NIMH-NIH: 5 Things You Should Know About Stress
- Headspace: Meditation for Beginners
- Hello Sunday Morning: How to Meditate & Clear Your mind
- HuffPost: How to Stop Thinking During Meditation
- The Shanti Path: 7 Signs During Meditation That Your Practice Is Working
- Healthline: 6 Types of Meditation: Which One is Right for You?
- Youtube: 7 Min Meditation to Start Your Day|Yoga With Adriene
- Youtube: Meditation for Beginners – How to Calm & Quiet Your Mind
- Psychology Today: How To Stop Your Mind From Wandering During Meditation
- Mindworks: What is Mantra Meditation? – Match Your Intention
- Psychology Today: 5 Health Benefits of Daily Meditation According to Science