The Boho Girl’s Guide to Fail-Safe Meditation

tumblr_n11nqjet3D1qb7dwvo1_500This world is growing faster and more furious every minute. With all that we have on the agenda these days, it can become a huge headache to relax. Our ability to stay in the present gets jumbled up in technology mania; messages from all over the globe flashing across computer screens, cell phones, and television sets at a million miles a minute. What’s a Boho gal or guy to do when it’s time to zone in and focus up on some serious “me” time?

For centuries, people have used meditation as a way of zeroing-in on themselves, their desires, and the goals that they wish to achieve. It’s a spiritual practice used to elevate the understanding of our inner nature as well as a practice to establish a connection to the divine. It’s been clinically proven that meditation not only calms the body and mind, but also works to inspire creativity, improve the immune system, and even help to boost our relationships with everyone (and everything) around us.

I could list the benefits for days, but how do you get down to the crunch when there is so much that is seemingly “crunching” you? Meditation is not supposed to be difficult. By all spiritual accounts, it’s one of the simplest practices, which immediately makes it the most difficult. And it’s totally important!

To get you in the “OM” mode, here are some tried and true, bohemian certified ways to make your meditation practice as simple and consistent as possible:

1. Get comfortable. In a lot of traditions, practioners remain in a seated position, legs crossed, hands upon the knees, or in the lap. However, we’re in the new age, so as long as you are comfortable, you will find that it will be easier to connect with your practice. As such, lying down is perfectly acceptable.

2. Focus on the breath. Start off your practice by simply paying attention to the ebb and flow of your on breath (if you are a yogi, you’re already familiar with this attentiveness to the act of breathing). Notice how the breath fills your lungs, your torso, and your chest, and notice how it leaves your body. Remember, you are not in this to change these sensations. Just notice them and connect with the physical act of the sensation.

3. Get a guide. Some people find guided meditations to be very helpful. A guided meditation will involve specific breath work, or alternatively, some visualizations that will create something of a “meditation story” for your practice. If this is something that you think you will enjoy, do some research. There are several books and websites that will have some incredible guided meditations for any practitioner.

4.  Accept where you’re at. You’re going to get frustrated. Accept this. No one ever achieved anything on this planet without hard work and practice. This is the biggest thing to remember when you are meditating. Be kind to yourself, be patient with yourself, and in time, the flow will come with less effort.

5. Breathe. When in doubt, just go back to the breath. I can guarantee that your mind is going to wander from time to time, and seriously, it’s no big deal. Even the greatest spiritual teachers in our world veer onto the mental fast lane! If your mind is starting to do its own thing, just bring your attention back to the breath. Notice the sensations again. Start counting the time it takes to inhale and exhale, and you’ll be on the right track again.

Once you’ve started your practice, it’s time to add in some consistency. Pick a time of the day when it is easiest for you to take a few minutes and enjoy the process of meditating. Some prefer the morning before they get up, while others like to wait until they are about to go to sleep. Discover what works for you and then commit yourself to doing it! You have nothing to lose, and everything to gain.

As with all things, practice is key. Enjoy it, live it, and you will reap the benefits of meditation in every aspect of your life. I can guarantee it!

Namaste!

Lauren is a guest writer for the Huffington Post and Social Media Coordinator in Toronto.

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Three Healing Affirmations Perfect for Summer

Summer is a great time to use healing affirmations to build a stronger, healthier and more loving relationship with yourself and your body. I have personally experienced the amazing power of healing affirmations in my own life, after having lost over 60 pounds naturally and healed my body of chronic health issues.

before_afterYour thoughts are powerful
Psychologists estimate that you have over 60,000 thoughts a day but the interesting thing is that 95% of them were the same thoughts you had yesterday!
In my experience, affirmations always work best when you first set a healing intention.
So, if you are ready to create a healthier body and mind for the summer, let’s first take a look at the power of setting a healing intention.

Setting your healing intention
Think of your healing intention as the general direction you want your life to head in. It doesn’t need to be specific. In fact, your healing intention can be quite broad. The important thing is to let your healing intention be something that brings you real joy and delight.  Mala beads are a great way to focus and grow your intention.

Examples of a healing intention might be that you want

  • To follow your dreams
  • To listen to your heart
  • To love your life

After you have set your healing intention, now is the time to turn your attention towards the quality of your thoughts.

What are the thoughts that you say quietly to yourself?
Within all of us, lives an inner voice, like a record player, that plays away in the background. It offers a ‘live commentary’ on you and how you are living your life, (amongst other things!)
When your thoughts are disapproving, critical or negative, this voice acts as your ‘inner critic’.
But, with awareness of your mind and your thoughts, you can learn how to transform it from your inner critic to your inner cheerleader!

How to befriend your inner voice.
If you catch yourself saying something negative about yourself, just stop mid-sentence .
Congratulate yourself for noticing. Quickly ask yourself, ‘what is something kinder and more loving that I could say to myself?’ And then repeat that thought instead. Let this replace old, repetitive negative thinking. Critical thoughts transform effortlessly into healing affirmations when you flip them into more supportive, kind and loving ones that make you feel good from within.

Here are 3 healing affirmations to start using…

Affirmation #1: Today, I am choosing to be kind and gentle to myself.

Affirmation #2: Today, I am learning how to express my creativity in the world.

Affirmation #3: I am feeling healthier and stronger with each day that passes.

Use the power of healing affirmations this Summer!

To achieve your goals and dreams, transform negative or sabotaging thoughts into new, empowering and healing affirmations instead. Trust in the process and know that transformation and healing happens naturally within the space of conscious awareness. To get your Free e-course called ‘5 Steps to Transformation’ and find out more about how to transform any area of your life, please click here

Katrina Love Senn is a Healer, Teacher & Author of “Losing Weight is a Healing Journey” & Founder of Yoga Girl Revolution.

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