How To Do Meditation at Home

Mediation is a technique that allows the mind to gain an intensified state of awareness and focus. It is a practice known worldwide. In Yogic traditions, meditation or Dhyana is an important technique used in Hatha yoga, together with the body poses or Asanas, and the controlled breathing techniques or Pranayama. There are two forms of Dhyana or meditation: concentrative meditation and mindfulness meditation.

Concentrative meditation is a form of meditation that allows the individual to focus only on one single point or object while tuning out the rest. The focus can be the breathing pattern, a song, a physical object or candle flame. The objective of this meditation is to allow the individual to focus the awareness on the object and letting go of other thoughts.

Mindfulness meditation is a form of meditation that allows the individual to contemplate on the thoughts that comes to mind. The goal of this meditation is the awareness and acceptance of these thoughts. Through this, one can identify the pattern of their thinking and gain a balance of the mind.

Benefits of meditation

Meditation benefits a person’s psychological and physiological health. It allows self-awareness to the practitioner and improves emotional health by managing stress. It improves concentration and memory. Research also shows that meditation helps in balancing sympathetic nervous system activities. With a relaxed mind and body, meditation also helps improve blood circulation and helps lower blood pressure and heart rate. It helps lower respiratory rate and blood cortisol levels.

What You Need to Meditate at Home

  • Find a clean and quiet space at home. It is important that the place where meditation will happen is clean and quiet. This space could be inside a bedroom, bathroom, or a big closet.
  • Wear comfortable clothes that are not too tight or too loose that could be distracting during meditation.
  • Find a comfortable cushion or yoga mat to sit on. Meditation cushion or Zafu is commonly used for meditation. It allows one to sit comfortably and upright during meditation. Meditation can also be done while walking, standing, and lying down. Although the most common position for meditation is while seating.
  • Use a timer to measure the time of meditation. There are also applications that can be downloaded on smartphones that can be used in meditation.

Sitting Postures for Meditation

1. Padmasana (Lotus Pose)

How to do it:
Sit on the floor with legs stretched in front. Bend both knees and place feet on opposite thighs. Keep the spine upright and chest out.

2. Sukhasana (Easy Pose)

How to do it:
Sit on the floor comfortably in a cross-legged position while both sides of the feet are touching the floor. Keep the spine stretched and chest open. Keep shoulders aligned over the hips and push the shoulder blades downwards.

3. Vajrasana (Diamond Pose)

How to do it:
Kneel on the floor with legs close together. Top of the feet should be touching the floor and heels upwards. Sit buttocks on the space between the feet. Open the chest and straighten the spine.

4. Virasana (Hero Pose)

How to do it:
Start with a tabletop position. While on all fours, keep both knees together while feet are a hip distance apart. Lower the hips so that your buttocks are touching the floor between the feet. Blocks can also be used to sit on for this pose. Push navel inwards and keep the spine stretched to the crown of your head.

5. Burmese Pose

How to do it:
Sit comfortably with legs stretched out in front. Bend knees and cross both legs while feet are touching the floor. Stretch the spine and relax the body.

Mudras for Meditation

mudras for meditation

1. Jnana Mudra

How to do it:
Form a circle by meeting the tips of the thumb and index finger together. Keep the other three fingers stretched while close together.

2. Shuni Mudra

How to do it:
Bring the tips of the middle finger and thumb together while keeping the other three fingers relaxed.

3. Dhyana Mudra

How to do it:
Place both hands, palms up at the lower abdomen or lap. Put the left hand under the right hand and let the thumbs touch.

4. Anjali Mudra

How to do it:
Lift both arms and bring palms together in front of the chest.

How To Meditate

Once you are comfortable on your position, gently close eyes and start breathing normally. While focusing on your breath, start breathing in slow and deep through the nostrils and exhale through the mouth. Inhale and exhale can also be done all through the nose for as long as it fully fills the lungs with air, expanding the diaphragm.

Focus on each breath and relax the mind and body. Do not think of how you breathe too much. Just observe and be aware. Don’t let your mind wander, let go of unnecessary thoughts. You may get distracted from time to time, but what is important is that you are able to go back to your focus. After meditating, open eyes and be aware of your surroundings.

Meditation can be done for at least 10 minutes per day and it can be extended as time goes by. Use the timer to set a gentle alarm.

When To Meditate

  1. It is advisable that meditation is done at the same place and same time every day. These are three best times to meditate:
  2. In the early morning: making this a routine at the beginning of the day helps to start the day with energy and awareness. It is a good way to set the mood for the rest of the day.
  3. During lunch hour: meditating in the middle of the day is a good way to reduce stress from the hours before it. It helps relax the mind and body and boosts energy for the rest of the day.
  4. End of the day: meditating at the end of the day helps de-stress and clear thoughts from the happenings of the day. It is important that meditation is not done right before bedtime, because to some people, meditation makes them fully awake and we do not want to confuse ourselves between relaxing and sleeping.