We know that morning meditation offers many benefits: better focus, less anxiety or stress, improved health, deeper sleep and a heartier appetite. But for many people, especially those who are restless or find it hard to stay in one place for long, meditation can be quite intimidating. If you’re worried about keeping your mind focused on one thing for a long time, a guided morning meditation might be the right option for you.
Guided meditation leads you through a mindfulness practice with simple instructions that keep you focused on the task at hand. It is a great way for beginners to learn how to meditate and discover what works for them, but many experienced practitioners also find it refreshing and relaxing to follow a guided morning meditation sometimes.
Who should do guided morning meditation?
Everyone benefits from meditation, without exception. The only challenge is finding what kind of meditation suits you. For someone who doesn’t like to sit for a long time, a standing or walking meditation position might be more suitable. On days when you have a long list of items to do, you might find your mind wandering to your mental checklist so often that you would prefer a shorter practice.
If you have been feeling anxious or stressed, if you feel as if you’re spreading yourself too thin or that your energies are scattered, meditation can help you reconnect to inner peace and a sense of oneness.
Oh, and did you know that kids can find immense benefits from a mindfulness practice too? Read how to try kids sleep meditation for easier bedtimes at home.
Techniques for improving focus during morning guided meditation
For those who are finding it hard to stay focused, try a different form of meditation. Some people focus on an object, like the flame of a candle. You might find it easier to repeat a mantra, even if it is a simple one like “Thank you” or “I exist”. Those who like to be moving will enjoy walking meditation, where they focus on the feel of the ground under their feet or the breeze running through their fingers and hair.
It is natural for your mind to leap to the next thought when you try to hold it down, and you may not be able to control that just yet. But you do have control over how you prevent your mind from wandering. Accept the distractions and set them aside to deal with later, and bring your focus back to your meditation practice. By doing this regularly, you’ll find that your mind accepts that this time is for meditation.
How to set up your morning guided meditation
If you choose to try meditation on your own at home, there are numerous apps that walk you through simple and effective practices. However this easy guide will have you meditating on your own very soon, without an app.
What you’ll need:
A comfortable place to sit, with a yoga mat/cushion and a back rest: Try sitting on a yoga mat or blanket on the floor with your back against the wall.
Relaxed clothing: You can choose to wear pyjamas or workout clothes, whatever you feel comfortable in.
Your phone or an alarm clock to set a timer: Fixing a time for your practice makes it more purposeful and measurable, and it also helps prevent your mind from wandering.
Let’s begin your guided morning meditation!
Find a seat: Settle down in your meditation spot and assume a seated position that you can maintain throughout your practice. Many practitioners like to sit cross-legged on a yoga mat, but if this is not a comfortable position for you, try sitting with your legs stretched out and your back against the floor. You may be more comfortable sitting on a chair, and that’s fine too. In all positions, make sure your back is straight and you are not hunching.
Breathe deep: Begin your practice with a few cleansing breaths. Focus and expand your lungs with each inhale to fill your body with fresh air. Exhale slowly, imagining your lungs emptying out completely. As you breathe deep, your stress levels will fall and you’ll feel more relaxed.
Stretch gently: Perform some light stretches in your seated position so that you release any tension in your limbs. Rotate your head sideways and around to stretch your neck, arch your spine, and stretch your arms and shoulders.
Time yourself: It’s quite likely that you’ll find it hard to meditate for a long time in the beginning. A short meditation of 10 minutes can help you become accustomed to the practice. It also helps to know that you have a specific time set for yourself, so you don’t keep checking the clock to see how long you’ve been meditating.
Let yourself go: Close your eyes or pick a spot to focus on, and begin your meditation. The easiest way is to focus on your breathing or an object, or repeat an affirming mantra. You might also choose to imagine sending healing vibes over your body or to your loved ones.
While you meditate, you might find that your mind wanders. You may find yourself going over your list of chores for the day or replaying something that happened yesterday. Tell yourself that you will spend time thinking about that later, and bring your mind back to your morning guided meditation.
End your session with a self-loving thought: When your alarm goes off, take a few deep breaths and exhale, smile, rub your palms together and place them over your eyes, and notice how you feel. Thank yourself for taking time out to do this guided morning meditation. Stand up carefully, stretch if you feel like it, and drink some water.
Guided morning meditation for beginners
If you find it hard to focus on nothingness, you might find it easier to focus on a visualization instead. Picture yourself in a calming environment, like taking a walk on the beach, lying on a lawn on a summer day, or sitting beside a fountain in a lush garden. Imagine how the sun feels on your skin, how your toes dig in to the sand or the grass, how the breeze lifts your hair, and how light and happy you feel inside.
Self-care begins at home. All of us experience stress and must find ways to deal with it. You might like to give yourself a healing massage at home, or burn off the stress with a 30 minute home workout.
If you would like to book a meditation session or tele-consultation with a meditation guide, Avaana can help you.