Hello beautiful reader,
Many of us have a very specific idea of what meditation is. Consequently, many of us believe we just don’t have the attention span for it, so we write meditation off as “not for me.”
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Although this is the idea we’ve seen more often, both in the media and in research about traditional meditation, it’s not the only form that meditation can take today.
Here’s a little modern meditation cheat sheet for you, derived from my personal experience.
DISCLAIMER: I’m not a professional meditation expert. I just want to share what has helped me in hopes that it might help someone else.
- For Beginners:
- I was a relatively anxious 14 years old. One day, my mom’s coworker suggested I listen to a meditation podcast aptly titled The Meditation Podcast. It was a guided meditation. The episodes were long, about 45 minutes long, but they worked. I’d listen to them while lying in bed or sitting in the passenger seat on the way to school and they helped me find calmness and stillness in the midst of the everyday hustle and bustle.
- They can be as long or as short as you want them to be. I often enjoy listening to 1 minute guided meditations.
- For Mindfulness:
- The Calm app had a really great mindfulness guided meditation plan. This was how I began practicing mindfulness. The beauty of this is, as the narrator tells you, it’s okay to allow your mind to wander then to “gently bring your attention back” to the present moment. Mindfulness is about observing the present moment without judgement. This might be a good place to start for people with short attention spans.
- The Calm app and Simple Habit both have great “Body Scan” meditations that really help bring you back to the present moment as well.
- For Your Morning Routine: Try Simple Habit’s “Meditation in Bed”
- In a Rush? Try “1 Minute Meditation” by Don Simmons on YouTube.
- For Midterms/Finals Week: Try Simple Habit’s “Relax Before Your Exam.”
- I used to do this meditation before I would leave my apartment to take my exams and it helped me tremendously.
- For a Reminder of Your Importance in this World: Simple Habit’s “Appreciate Your Impact”
- For a Bedtime Story: The Calm app’s “Sleep Stories” section has many amazing recordings, but two of my favorites that I’ve listened to so far are “Wonder,” narrated my Matthew McConaughey and “Dreaming of Atlantis,” narrated by Alan Sklar.
These apps and guided meditations can act as a gateway to greater and deeper spiritual reflection for people who see more traditional meditation as daunting or unattainable.
I hope these meditations can help you find moments of serenity throughout your day. Comment below with any meditations you’d like to share.