Make meditation a habit (#12before50)

Make meditation a habit (#12before50)

Nikki ParkinsonHealth, Life 10 Comments

I know it’s only a couple of weeks into my 12 months challenge but I wanted to thank-you so much for all your ideas that you shared after I wrote this post.

I’m super excited that quite a few of you said that you’d also be joining in before your own milestone birthday next year … or just because.

{If you do join in and want to share your new things each month, leave a comment in the comments section below – you can share a photo there or a link if you’ve also written about it on a blog or social media post.}

To bring you up to speed: I turn the big 5-0 next year and, not one to shy away from milestones or festivities, I’ve decided to challenge myself to try or do something new each month in the lead up to the Festival of Fifty.

I’ve got a “working” list of 12 ideas but I’m allowing myself to be open to changing what’s on the list as the 12 months unfolds.

Why?

Given that the idea behind the challenge is to keep things exciting and fun, I think it makes sense not to lock myself into a schedule.

My list includes a mix of healthy stuff, semi-adventurous stuff, creative stuff and frivolous stuff. Some of the stuff – the 12 new things – may give me joy for just the time that I do them; others may have a lasting impact on my health.

As I said in the first post, every day we get on this planet is a privilege. Let’s embrace that.

New thing #1: meditation

Make meditation a habit (#12before50)

The concept – and even the practice – of meditation are not new to me. What is new is making that practice a habit.

Any time that I’ve tried in the past to make meditation a habit, I stumbled because I had this notion that I had to allocate a huge chunk of time to it.

So, I’d start and give up because prioritising that time would become too difficult.

After the Business Chicks workshop last month with Agapi Stassinopoulos, I committed to meditating every day for 32 days.

But here’s the crucial thing: I committed to meditating every day for five minutes every day for 32 days.

Realising that I didn’t have to find 20 minutes or 30 minutes each day for meditation to make a difference has been the key to helping me make it a habit.

I’ve missed just one day and that may or may not have been because I’d spent the afternoon meditating on all things Champagne with a bunch of girlfriends on my birthday.

OOPS.

I can live with that if you can.

The other thing that previously was my undoing when it came to successfully mastering meditation was that I have a special super power in that I can sleep at any given time of the day should I put myself in anything that vaguely resembles a sleep-like position.

The five-minute time limit does help but so does sitting up to meditate.

I’m also easily distracted at the best of times and, when I’m meditating, it often feels like I’m playing a game of ping pong to hit my thoughts out of my brain and return to focusing on my breathing or whatever it is that the voice through my headphones is telling me to do.

On that note, I’m much better when there is guidance for me to listen to (although I did get excited about Moby’s release and will work on this). Give me a minute WITHOUT someone helping me to focus on my solar plexus or to relax my legs and that game of mental ping pong reaches Olympic-qualifying standard.

How I started meditating

I started like I always tend to start when I need to find out something: I hit up Google with “five-minute meditation”.

I’ve worked my way through quite a few videos on YouTube and on apps and thought I’d share with you links to the ones I keep coming back to.

I found you could find different guided meditation videos for whatever you’re needing – eg calm, mindfulness or energy boost – so I mix it up depending on my mood and the time of day.

This app has also been handy to have on my phone for meditating when not in wi-fi – I’ve used it on flights.

I’m not quite at the habit stage yet with this meditation business but I’m certainly further down the track than I was a month ago.

And I don’t intend on stopping anytime soon. This one new thing very much sits in the long-term health benefits column of my 12-month list.

So tell me, have you got this meditation business nailed? Are you joining in the challenge and doing one new a month? Share below.

Comments 10

  1. Thank you Nikki – meditation is one of the best things I’ve ever discovered. Not to mean that I can really get into the zone, it’s the hardest things sometimes but having some great guidance is crucial. I will get the app you recommend. Have you come to find Davidji yet? He has the best voice and guides some of the best meditations I know.
    love Annax

  2. I am trying (with varying degrees of success) to establish a regular meditation practice this year. I also found that reducing this to 5-10mins works for me and sometimes I even do 2 short sessions a day. My all-time favourite app is called insight timer – it’s like a gorgeous smorgasbord of meditations….you can choose the length of time, theme, music (or none) and you can bookmark your favourites and log your sessions to track progress. Definitely an app worth looking at.

  3. Meditation is on my list of Things To Do. I usually give up because my brain is always so busy and I either get distracted or fall asleep but I think even I can manage 5 minutes. You’ve inspired me – I’m off to check out those you tubes!

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