How To Prepare Your Mind for Meditation

Meditation has many benefits, including stress relief, peace of mind and increased concentration. In order to achieve a state of meditation, there are several ways to set your mind in the right frame.

Here are some ideas for preparing your mind for meditation.

  • Make enough time for it. Give up half an hour of television or wake up earlier than usual. Early mornings are a good time to meditate, as there is less activity around you before the sun is up and therefore less distractions. If you are feeling sleepy, take a quick shower to wake up your senses.
  • Play the right music. Different music can alert the right part of your brain that's keen on meditation. Choose music that relaxes you without making you sleepy. Prepare a playlist of music that will play continuously without needing to intercede. You can look for ideal meditative music online or compile a list of music as suggested by other practitioners.
  • Light a candle. The flickering flame of a candle can grab your attention, removing all other thoughts in your mind. By closing the other lights in your room, you create a single light source that will focus your mind to the task at hand. Lighting incense is also a good way to enhance the mood for meditation. If you do not want to use a candle, replacing a harsh incandescent bulb if with a diffused bulb with soften the lighting in your surroundings.    
  • Remove distractions. Place heavy curtains on your windows to muffle any background noise or flickering lights from outside your residence. Shut off the TV, radio, mobile phone and other devices off. Close the door and inform others not to disturb you or be noisy for half an hour. If possible, do not use a noisy electric fan to keep the room cool.
  • Read a meditative passage. Select a book on meditation essays or an expert on meditation from a bookstore or online source. You can also borrow one from a friend. Open randomly and select a section, then think about what that passage means. You may also repeat a mantra while letting your mind revolve around it to allow you to concentrate on one thing.
  • Avoid eating prior to meditation. Heavy meals with solid food will cause your body to send blood to your digestive tract, resulting in sleepiness and poor concentration. Stick to liquids in the hours before meditation.
  • Assume the correct posture. A simple Buddha posture is performed by sitting on a mat with your legs crossed, back straight and shoulders relaxed. If you are unable to maintain this cross-legged position, resume your meditation in a position as close to this as possible. Avoid slouching as this may make you feel too sleepy to continue the meditation. Avoid clothing that restricts flexibility; simple, comfortable attire will do.

By performing these steps, you can clear your mind and concentrate on one thing before emptying it completely of thought. Try relaxing parts of your body one at a time, imagining the tensions of the day flowing away.


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