There may be times when the stress may seem like too much. You may not know what to do to make that strong feeling any less intense. However, there are many ways to calm your mind. Different forms of meditation can help overcome stressful situations. The one that I use on an almost daily basis is a breathing meditation.
This is a relatively simple form of meditation. To begin, find a quiet place where you won’t be distracted. This could be your room or your garden or anywhere you find peaceful. Then, find a comfortable and relaxed way to sit because you don’t want any body pains to take away from this experience. The goal is to only focus on the present. close your eyes to make sure that nothing will distract you. If your mind wanders, sit there and concentrate on breathing. Keep track of how you breathe and how your body moves while you breathe. It does not need to take too long. You could start by setting aside a few minutes out of your day to do this. Once you start, you will find that your stress levels have decreased.
Here’s an example of how I have used this technique. Living with five other people can add stress to any person, no matter how much you like your housemates. I’m a full time student and after hours of classes and homework, I’m already feeling a bit on edge. Coming home to even the simplest of inconveniences can set me off on some days. Recently, I had a very stressful day of school. I came home to a sink full of dishes even though we have a rule about cleaning dishes right away. After seeing this, I wanted to just scream. However, I know this wouldn’t solve anything. I went to my room and sat down on my bed. I closed my eyes and just concentrated on my own breathing. It took a few minutes but I did feel the stress leave my body. After this, I was able to calmly ask my housemates to clean up. When we’re in a bad mood, we can lash out at the people around us. This is something I want to avoid because having loved ones around me is extremely important.
There are many different types of meditation. I haven’t had much experience with more advanced meditations but I’m able to enjoy the benefits of simpler ones. Thanks to the internet, it is relatively simple to find one that is right for you. The advantage of meditation, such as understanding your body, relaxation, and enlightenment can help anyone in their day to day life.
Written by Heather Salerno, SUNY New Paltz intern at Roots & Wings