How to Start Meditating (And Why!)

After last week’s post about realizing my work/life balance was just all out of whack, I decided that I needed to make immediate steps towards healing. Part of that included deleting many of the time slots I had requested overtime for. From here on out I’m only going to work three-four days of overtime per shift. Three preferred, but four if it helps me avoid a midnight draft.

The other thing I did was to download the app Headspace which was recommended as a good app for people who are trying to learn how to meditate and gradually build up the habit.

Going into this, here are my reasonings:

  1. Meditation will help me gain control of my racing thoughts.
  2. Meditation will help me calm my mind when I am stressed.
  3. Meditation will help me focus.

As you can see, my primary motivation for meditating is to calm my mind and help me achieve a more positive headspace and energy.

I only read one review before downloading Headspace. The review went over five meditation apps and the top two were Headspace and Calm. They were both highly rated but Headspace was touted as an app that helps people learn how to meditate and then maintain that habit. Both apps are $70 a year (or they do have monthly subscriptions) and both have trial periods to see if you actually like the app and will stick to it.

Long term I would like to make meditation a daily habit, even if it is only twenty minutes before I go to bed. I don’t know what to expect and, while all signs are pointing to go, I don’t know if meditation will be effective at all.

I have also done very basic research about the positive benefits meditation is supposed to have on my life. This article which was posted on Psychology Today gives a long list of reasons to start meditating along with separate articles and studies backing up everything they promise. If you’re interested, or even just curious, I’d take a look.

I went into this with one simple rule:

  1. Meditate at least once a day.

I didn’t do anything too special to begin with. In fact, the first three days (Sunday – Tuesday) all involved me meditating primarily at work in our break room until I left my headphones at home.

After about five days or so I realized that, while I wasn’t meditating every day, the times I did meditate I felt much more in control of my thoughts and was also a lot calmer. The BEST part of the app which I wasn’t expecting was the sleep casts which are essentially very calming stories that give you visuals to focus on while also helping you to drift into sleep. I finished one story because I was so into it but the other two nights I fell asleep way before the narrator was done. I absolutely love the stories and they have so many of them.

I’ll report back later with any further results but for now I’m going to continue planning a trip to the British Isles next June.

Let me know your results with meditation! I’m very interested to know if you’ve learned anything that can help me or other people!

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