Yoga and meditation go hand in hand. With the hectic pace and demands of modern life, we often feel stressed and over-worked at times in our lives. Do you often feel like there is just not enough time in the day to get everything done? Stress and tiredness make us unhappy, impatient and frustrated and it can affect our health.
Meditation gives us more time by making the mind calmer and more focused. A simple ten minutes of breathing meditation can help us overcome stress and find some inner peace and balance. Meditation can also help us to understand our own mind. We can learn how to transform our mind from negative to positive, from disturbed to peaceful, from unhappy to happy.
Do you find that meditation is difficult? How can one just sit still and not think of anything? Do you have the image that to meditate you need to sit on a mountain in Tibet? Everyone can meditate and it doesn’t have to be so difficult. For western cultures, meditation is quite far away from us culturally.
Meditation doesn’t have to be so complicated. Just taking a few minutes in the morning, evening or before your yoga class is a good start. Just to sit down, calmly and observe the mind and our bodies. Becoming more mindful means that we start to live more fully in the moment.
Coming from a half Thai background, my parents often took me and my sister to Buddhist Meditation sessions when we were children. Of course, we would fall asleep, but I remember it was somehow a soothing environment, all these people just sitting and breathing. Later in life, I went to a Buddhist temple once a week for an hour-long meditation and Sanskrit studies.
Moving abroad, I found it increasingly hard to find time to meditate on the side of a stressful job. There are many meditation apps and guides available but one that helped me to a regular practice again was Headspace. You can try 10 lessons for free and on the go. Andy Puddicombe demystifies meditation and guides you through simple sessions. With this guide, I could do meditation on the go and used to practice whilst commuting in trains and buses, so no more excuses not having time.
Immediately, I started to feel the benefits. I became calmer, took distance and it was easier to prioritise. Often I would have a problem or a decision to make, after meditation, the answer just came to me automatically. What seemed difficult became clear. Everything just fell into space, and I started to sleep better too, worrying less. So it’s important to train the body, but let’s not forget the mind! Practicing the mind is yoga.