Learn to Slow Down, Find Peace and Be In Control of Your Thoughts
If you are looking for a space to reconnect to yourself, reflect, focus on your breathing, or just to rest– meditation at Gateway Healing Center might be the perfect place for your rejuvenation.
What is Meditation?
For many people, the image that comes to mind when they hear the word “meditation” is a monk chanting “om”, or a person sitting perfectly still in a cross-legged position with their hands in a prayer position. Although these might be accurate representations, meditation can come in many forms, and there is no right or wrong way to meditate. According to Merriam-Webster’s definition, to meditate is to:
- Engage in contemplation or reflection
- Engage in mental exercise– concentration on breathing or repeating a mantra
- Focus one’s thoughts
- Plan or project in the mind
Generally speaking, meditation is the act of being intentional with your time, your body, your thoughts and your actions. This might look different depending on what your needs and goals are.
You do not have to be sitting cross-legged in complete silence to meditate. There are walking and other types of movement meditations, there are meditations where you are laying down with your gaze focused on something above you. Truly, there can be infinite ways to meditate as long as there is intention and focus.
Meditation is not only for the spiritual gurus, the yogis, or the enlightened. In the 21st century, everyone is talking about meditation, from the social media channels you follow, to your favorite TV shows, and maybe even your doctor! It is something that many people know they should be doing, but if you have never meditated before, it can be hard to know where to start.
What Are The Benefits?
According to preliminary research, an ongoing meditation practice has positive effects on a number of things including:
- Stress, anxiety and depression
- High blood pressure
- Relationships with others and oneself
- Connection to a higher sense of being
*This information was provided by the Mayo Clinic, but should not be used in place of medical advice.
What To Expect:
Some people who begin meditating feel relief almost instantly, while for others, it takes a committed meditation practice to really experience significant changes. But if you have never meditated before, where should you begin? At Gateway we have trained professionals who have embarked on their own journeys with meditation and mindfulness who are ready to guide you.
At Gateway, our meditation guides help newcomers and seasoned meditators alike.
A session at Gateway will begin with us asking a few questions:
- Do you have any experience meditating?
- What are your short and long term goals you’re hoping to achieve with meditation?
- Do you have any preferences as to positioning? (ie: sitting, laying, etc)
A meditation session is either 30 minutes or a full hour. You will be guided through a meditation based on your needs, goals, and comfort level. We set up the room to be peaceful and have a calming effect. This may include dimmed lighting, soft music, incense or essential oils. You will be encouraged to find a comfortable position for your body, be aware of your breathing, and ultimately find the space to relax and prepare for the guided meditation. Although the meditation is guided, there will be plenty of silence throughout the experience. Feel free to bring a journal to capture your thoughts after your session.
Common Misconceptions About Meditation:
There are some misconceptions about meditation that might deter newcomers from starting. We want to clear those up.
- You have to clear your mind in order to receive any benefits- The goal of meditation is not to clear one’s mind, but rather to be aware and more in-control of the thoughts coming through. Meditation can help you become more discerning of which thoughts are important to pay attention to and which thoughts can just be let go.
- You are not allowed to move or fidget- During meditation it is normal for a person to need to fidget, itch their nose, move a foot, etc. Often when people find a flow in meditation their movements are less frequent, but this does not mean that you are forbidden to scratch your ear or readjust your seat.
- You can be “good” or “bad” at meditating-There is no such thing as being “good” or “bad” at meditating. Sure, some people have more experience than others, and some might have more practice calming their minds and bodies, but it does not mean that having a fulfilling meditation experience is out of reach.
If you have been curious about starting a meditation practice, or you are looking for a change of scenery for your existing practice, book your meditation appointment with Gateway Healing Center. Learn new techniques and find your inner peace with a dedicated space and time for your meditation practice.