Regular meditation has been shown to provide a wide range of physical and mental health benefits, but many people find it difficult to meditate. If you are struggling to focus your attention while meditating, here are five tips to make the process easier.
One of the biggest barriers to meditation is scattered or racing thoughts. Many people are unable to focus their attention because their mind is continuously hijacked by thoughts, memories and mental chatter. You can help to focus your attention by using a mantra (a phrase repeated throughout the meditation), counting the number of breaths you take or even reciting the lyrics to a song.
Visualization is a powerful tool for focusing the mind and can even help to reduce your blood pressure, heart rate and stress levels. Visualize a scene or landscape that makes you feel calm and relaxed. It could be a place you've visited, a scene from a photograph or a fictional place you've created in your own mind. The more detail you use when imagining the scene, the more powerful the visualization will be.
Using your senses as part of your meditation is another simple way to focus your attention. Some people like to listen to music or other sounds while meditating. Tibetan singing bowls, shamanic drumming and white noise are all popular meditation aids. You can also use aromatherapy oils, incense sticks and other scents as part of your meditation practice.
Guided meditations are ideal for beginners and people who find it difficult to stay focused during a meditation practice. There are thousands of free guided meditations available through YouTube and other video sharing platforms. You can also download guided meditation apps from Amazon, Google Play and the Apple store.
Learning to meditate is often easier when you're sharing the experience with other people. Taking a meditation course, either online or in your local area, is a great way to experiment and learn new skills. If you can't find a class in your local area, consider setting up a meditation group to meet like-minded people.
Regular meditation can help to improve physical and mental health, but many people struggle to focus their attention for extended periods of time. Keeping your mind occupied, visualizing a scene, engaging your senses, using guided meditations and taking a course can all help to make meditation easier.