How to cheat at meditation: does that sound like something you’d like to know or are you someone who meditates daily? For some people, meditation is like Brussels sprouts. It’s like, ‘Yes, I know it’s good for me. Thanks anyway. But, I think I’ll pass.’ And just like Brussels sprouts, all the amazing benefits of meditation aren’t immediately felt. For others, it’s a vital part of their wellbeing regime to help control the controllables. As part of a self-care routine, meditation is something we can all do and benefit from to help support our wellbeing through biohacking*.
Paula Sullivan of finallyworryfree.org shares how we can all make mediation a daily habit.
“If you really want to conquer your worry and anxiety, don’t let the fact that the benfits of meditation aren’t instant stop you. Meditation is good for us in so many ways mentally, physically, energetically, and spiritually. The funny thing is you don’t even have to be good at it to reap its rewards. Fifteen minutes a day is all it would take. Even ten minutes a day is better than nothing. Even five minutes is better than not meditating at all. In fact, a little later in this post, I’m going to show you how to cheat at it.
What you don’t need to meditate
Now, I’m not a purist in any way. So, unless you want to reach complete spiritual nirvana or practice someday with Tibetan monks, here are all the things you don’t need to meditate:
- A field
- A robe
- Pretzel legs
- Complete silence
- Hours and hours
What you do need to meditate
What you do need to meditate:
- A place to sit or lie down. It doesn’t even have to be a quiet place. Any place will do. Just not when you’re driving or during a time when you need to be alert.
- An attitude that you’re most likely going to be pretty bad at it at first, like the rest of us. Maybe even for a long time. But, you’ll be getting better at it the more you make it a regular practice even if it doesn’t always seem like it.
Here are the keys to meditation. Again, I just want to remind you that I’m not a meditation expert or teacher or anything like that. This is my personal experience with making meditation a daily part of my life and in my research.
Studies have shown that on average, we have one thought per second streaming through our minds. This is not the case for everyone, but we can use this general statement here. That means we have 900 thoughts in fifteen minutes. Meditation is not about having no thoughts. That’s impossible. You’re not trying to shut down your thoughts. It’s about focusing on one simple monotonous thing so it feels like that. It’s about directing your thoughts.
When your mind wanders, just gently bring your focus back. With 900 thoughts flowing in during a fifteen minute session, your mind will wander. Just get used to letting those thoughts float by and refocusing. Here are some things you can focus on during your meditation:
- A word or phrase. There are specific mantras for meditation that you can research and use. Like the mantra, ‘Om’. You can also use your own words or phrases. Like, ‘calm’ or ‘inner strength’, for example.
- A candle or object.
- A sound out in nature, like the sound of birds chirping, a river flowing, or trees rustling. Call them up on YouTube, if you’re inside.
- A repetitive sound, like a refrigerator running or an air conditioner humming.
- Instrumental music. You could go to YouTube and search for meditation sounds or meditation music to find some.
You can enhance your meditation with subliminal videos on YouTube. This is a fascinating subject that you can research. There are different types of subliminal input that are known to help reprogram your subconscious mind. There are things like binaural beats, healing frequencies, and subliminal messages that I personally love listening to. They are all at frequencies that are not picked up by your conscious mind so it just sounds like you’re listening to waves crashing on the shore or repetitive music, for instance.
Speaking of YouTube, there are tons of guided meditations that walk you through different types of meditations. I absolutely love them and highly recommend that you explore them. To get started, go to YouTube and search any issue you want to work on or goal you want to reach. Anything at all. There will be plenty of guided meditations for it. And as you get more comfortable with them and start using them regularly, you’ll gravitate towards some of your favourite guided meditation creators. These creators are usually people who are long time experts in their field. You can then go to their websites and learn more from them, as well.
I believe there are two main goals with meditation. The first is to make it a habit. And the second goal is to strive to go deeper with your meditations. The simple reason for this is because we are usually in the alpha brainwave state when we meditate. There are lots of great, healthy benefits to being in this state. But, as you go deeper, you go into the theta brainwave state and the benefits of this state are more amazing.
Here is what some familiar people say about meditation:
“The deeper you go, the quieter it gets. The more radiant it gets… quiet, deep, empty, serene, complete, boundless.” Richard Gere
“It feels good. Kinda like when you have to shut your computer down, just sometimes when it goes crazy, you just shut it down and when you turn it on, it’s okay again. That’s what meditation is for me.” Ellen DeGeneres
“The one thing I want to do is centre myself every day and make that a practice for myself. Because I’m 1,000 percent better when I do that.” Oprah Winfrey
Let me ask you: Have you ever sat in a jacuzzi and let your body relax, felt the hot water and bubbles around you, and listened to the rhythmic rumbling of the water for a little while?
How about sitting by a campfire on a summer night being mesmerized by the flames?
How often have you laid on a blanket in the sand at the beach, soaking in the sun’s rays, listening to the crashing of the waves?
Or floated on a pool mattress for what seemed like hours?
Congrats! You can (sort of) meditate.
Do you notice how you just get taken in by all that your senses are absorbing during times like these? And your mind seems to get swept away to Nowhere’s Ville. So, there you have it. How to cheat at meditation.
Since you know that meditation is so incredibly good for you, why not take advantage of these times that seem to mimic meditation. Your brainwaves are actually going into the alpha state during these times which, as I mentioned, is the state we are in during basic meditation. So when you find yourself by a cosy fire on a cold winter night or laying peacefully on a giant blow up flamingo in the pool, take some extra steps to meditate. Close your eyes and just settle in. And no one has to know you’re giving your mind and body some extra zing.
Practice ‘cheating’ this week. When you find yourself in a really relaxing situation bump it up by intentionally sneaking meditation into it.”
Thank you Paula for sharing your tips on how to cheat at meditation. If you’d like to learn more tips to help you become a happier person from the inside out, please visit Paula’s website or check out her book Finally Worry Free on Amazon.
* Biohacking is using all of the tools we now have at our disposal to improve our lives by taking control of our biology. Biohacking has actually been used for centuries. Human beings have always looked to maximise their performance. This is why nutrigenomics is a fundamental part of biohacking a healthier life. Based on the study of the effects of nutrients and natural compounds on our genes, scientifically-backed products that support healthy ageing on a cellular level are now available to add to your biohacking toolbox.
Just like meditation, having more antioxidants whizzing around your body is not something that you necessarily ‘feel’ immediately but trust the science and know that lowering your oxidative stress levels will help support your cellular function. We are after all a collection of 30-40 trillion cells so if your cells are working well, so are you!
Nutrigenomics products support the body’s natural cellular function by targeting the main biochemical effects of ageing, issues like oxidative stress, natural mitochondrial deterioration and more. By reactivating your body’s ability to do what it used to do – such as triggering your genes’ ability to produce their own antioxidants and your cells‘ ability to produce mitochondria – we can now feel as fab as possible for as long as possible to get the most out of life.
Biohacking and antioxidant activation
So why are antioxidants so important if you’re looking to keep feeling like you for as long as possible? When you cut open an apple and it goes brown, it has basically oxidised which has caused a rapid increase in its ageing process. As we age, we oxidise just like the apple because over time – from our 20s onwards – our bodies produce fewer of the antioxidants needed to neutralise the cellular damage caused by the free radicals around us.
This means we have a high oxidative stress level so our cells don’t function quite as well as they did. Typically our energy levels drop, our sleep patterns change and our inflammation levels rise as just three results of this process.
So what are our options to get more antioxidants into our bodies? How it works is that one antioxidant basically hands over an electron making one free radical happy so that it can continue on its merry way without causing damage. The problem is that you can’t eat enough antioxidant rich fruit and veg or take enough antioxidant supplements to deal with the 300 sextillion or so (that’s 300 plus 18 zeros!) free radicals your body has to deal with every day.
Up to recently, these were our only strategies to counter free radical damage but in reality they’re like throwing a glass of water on a bonfire and hoping it will put it out…
By naturally reactivating your own antioxidant production through biohacking, you’ll support your cellular health from the inside out. The good news is that you can now trigger your body to produce its own antioxidants again.
Find out more about a natural product which is patented and clinically proven to lower your oxidative stress level by an average of 40% in just 30 days for the price of around half a cup of coffee a day: Protandim Nrf2.
For more biohacking advice, become part of our It’s All About Fabulous You community on Facebook for a daily tip on simple, proven ways to feel fab by supporting your wellbeing: https://www.facebook.com/groups/itsallaboutfabulousyou/.