How To Do Everything Better: A Beginner’s Guide To Meditation

Leah Bourne
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how to meditate How To Do Everything Better: A Beginners Guide To MeditationNew year, new you. With that in mind, follow along as we hit up experts in far-ranging fields from fashion to hospitality to travel for their thoughts on how to do everything better this year.
Meditation has been proven to not only be good for the soul, but also for your health, and the practice can be useful for managing everything from anxiety to depression to even pain , according to health experts. A major advocate of meditation is Dr. Habib Sadeghi (pictured below), founder of Be Hive of Healing, an integrative health center based in Los Angeles, and someone who Gwyneth Paltrow has credited with having “changed my life in terms of allergy testing and food.”
In his latest book, Within: A Spiritual Awakening to Love & Weight Loss, Dr. Sadeghi writes: “It’s difficult to be still when we live in a world where everyone’s attention is so fractured. Concentration has become a lost art in the age of cell phones, portable computers, internet-on-demand, iPods, texting, Blackberries, electronic books, instant messaging, Twitter, blogging, Facebook, video games, and Skype camera communication…Remember that the most important thing you can ever give anyone or anything is your attention!”
Dr. Sadeghi is quick to assert to not be intimidated by meditation. “You don’t need chanting, far Eastern symbols, or incense to make the connection,” he states.
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Dr. Sadeghi’s guidelines for getting started suggest that the most important part of easing into the practice of meditation is simply getting into the routine.
1. “When starting out, remember to not take meditation so seriously or you’ll become frustrated and give up,” Dr. Sadeghi says. “It takes time and practice, just like any other new activity. Be dedicated, but not serious.”
2. “The easiest thing to do is sit in a comfortable chair. Do not lie down or you’re liable to fall asleep.”
3. “Keep a watch or clock close by, and give yourself ten minutes. Take three deep breaths and exhale fully after each one”
4. “Close your eyes. Fold your hands in your lap and simply relax.”
5. “Place your focus on your breath, particularly at the place where the air enters your nostrils. Just take note of each inhalation and exhalation. Don’t try to change it if it’s shallow or uneven. Just notice it. Keep your focus there for as long as you can. You might even say to yourself internally with each breath, “in,” “out,” and so on. Eventually, you’ll be able to stop saying the words in your head and just be with your breath. At the start, however, this can be a helpful tool to keep you connected.”
6. “Irrelevant thoughts will break through—lots of them. The idea is not to prevent the thoughts from coming, but to not engage in any of them. As thoughts about work, the kids, or your favorite TV show come into view, simply let them float out of your mind like a cloud. Sometimes, they can come rapid-fire. Don’t be discouraged. Just do your best to release them, and come back to the breath. There will be times when you’re not even aware that you’ve been swept away by a thought until you’ve been entertaining it for several minutes. That’s okay. When you do become aware, just come back to the breath.”
Excerpt from “Within: A Spiritual Awakening to Love & Weight Loss” By Dr.Habib Sadeghi. Available for $18.99 at amazon.com
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