Just as there are many different paths to climb a mountain, there are also a variety of meditation techniques. All have the same goal: achieving a state of inner concentration, calmness, and serenity. We do this not by trying to make the mind empty, which is impossible anyway, but by allowing the mind to focus on one element or object, leading attention further inward.
By giving ourselves one internal focus of attention, we help the mind stop other stressful mental processes such as worrying, planning, thinking, and reasoning. Here we will explore different meditation techniques.
Breathing exercises have an enormous amount of benefits in preparing the mind for meditation and improving health. This may also be used as a meditation technique, since we are focused only on the breath. Practicing these exercises calms the nervous system and helps to control reactions such as anger, anxiety, and much more. To read more about getting started with breathing techniques, click here.
If new to meditation, it may be difficult to get started without a teacher or guide present. A guided meditation is voice guided and may be done prerecorded or live by an experienced instructor. This type of meditation uses imagery or visualization and may use the senses such as smells, sights, sounds, and textures. If you are interested in a guided meditation led by Gates To Yoga, you can find these videos on our online yoga studio.
Mantras are sounds or vibrations which are used to concentrate the mind in meditation. A mantra may be a word, phrase, a syllable, or set of sounds that is repeated to uplift and keep us focused. Many different kinds are used throughout the world, such as; Om, Amen, and Shalom. You can create your mantra such as, "I am love" or "Relaxation". You can say your mantra out loud or silently during your meditation.
Mindfulness Meditation is an increased awareness and acceptance of the present moment; it is a focus on the experience during meditation such as our thoughts and emotions. During our experience, our goal is to observe these thoughts and emotions and let them pass without judgement, then return back to our object of focus (for example, the breath).
Qi Gong is a part of traditional Chinese medicine. This practice combines meditation, relaxation, physical movement and breathing exercises.
A form of Chinese martial arts; perform a self-paced series of postures or movements slowly and gracefully while practicing deep breathing.