How do I relieve stress and pressure from my daily life? How do I relax and think clearly? I need to break the day’s fast pace for a moment of solace. What can I do? The answer is easy, daily meditation.
Regular relaxation and meditation allows the mind to analyze, learn and understand. Use meditation as a pressure value to help regulate your emotional well being. Like all things you learn in the martial arts, it’s a skill to be developed over time.
Things that are important to you should receive your focus and attention. Daily mediation will allow you to channel your emotional resources to those things. By maintaining your focus and allocating emotional and mental resources to the most important items, you become centered. You’ll find yourself content and happy since the important matters are addressed. Being mentally centered leads to spiritually and emotionally center-ness.
How to Mediate
Sit in a comfortable position with a straight back. Hunching your back reinforces bad posture and is bad for meditation. You must first relax your body and mind. A great technique for relaxing the body involves clenching the fist and then release. That draining feeling is soothing. Experience the emptiness.
The next step is to visualize the qi flowing through your body. Imagine it seeping up through the ground into your body. The qi will flow up your back and then down into your lower stomach. From there, the qi will flow up the front of your body and out of the mouth. Down into the earth and visualize it starting again. Remember to breathe and relax.
In martial arts (and in meditation), it is never proper to breath using your chest. The chest should remain still. Use the stomach muscles to drive your lungs. Breathe in through the nose. Keep filling the lungs until there is no more room. You can find more room by sticking out your stomach.
Now, gently breath out through your mouth with one steady, easy flow. Push the air out using your stomach muscles. Imagine your stomach as a bellow, forcing the air out of your mouth. Stay relaxed.
Once you can do the diaphramatic breathing without thinking about each step, engage your mind in peaceful visualization. Imagine a peaceful meadow under a blue sky. The green grass is waving slowly. A crisp wind is blowing, orchestrating the whole scene.
When you can yourself in this place, visualize clean energy flow into your body, flushing out the bad energy. Some people don’t like the term energy. You can use water-images or anything else that can leave your body. The key is to use your mind to remove the bad thoughts and emotions.
When you are rejuvenated, slowly return to your peaceful place. Gently open your eyes. Remain still for a few more moments as your body and mind readjust to the world around you. You breathing are very slow and regular. Most people feel a sense of light-headed euphoria at this point. You’ve done well.
One of the benefits to daily meditation is positive thoughts erode negative thoughts. When you are under stress, you’re more likely to be defensive or agitated. By reallocating your resources, you can deal with others (and events) with plenty of patience and ammunition to deal with the problem.
Peace and relaxation erode stress. As you gain the skills to truly deal with your problems and life, you’ll find yourself more at peace. You become an emotional lighthouse for others. Do you ever wonder why perky and vibrant people attract others? It’s because they are better at dealing with stress than others. As you progress in focusing your resources and relaxing, you can help others. Sharing is a very rewarding and stimulating act.
Lead by example. Even if you only want to lead yourself, you must set an example for yourself. Promise yourself you’ll sit down for a few minutes each day to meditate. Start small and work to longer and longer times.
When is the best time to do it?
There are several “ideal” times to meditate. You must find the right time for yourself. Here are some examples:
- In the morning
- In the evening, prior to sleep
- When stress is high
- When you feel out of control
Remember that proper breathing is the key.