Meditation is a tool to release stress and tension that you may not even realize is there. I have had students laugh, cry and snore. Yes! Snore(my husband cannot stay awake,lol). Falling asleep is not meditating being aware while being still is meditation.

Most students have trouble at first but nothing comes easy that has any value. It takes work to break a sweat, it takes discipline to achieve a goal and takes patience to raise a child. Meditation practice takes that exact same journey. Sweat, discipline and patience, not actual sweat but mental sweat, as your body learns something new.

I always start with the breath. If your breath is not even the flow of the meditation will not show results. Patterns of breath can present illness and energy blockages. Learning to breathe is the first connection to the awareness of mind and body. I like the analogy of how the relationship of a horse and rider show the connection as the horse represents the body and the rider the mind. The stillness of the horse will allow us to give the mind the attention it needs to deactivate the reactivity of cycles that perpetuate the chatter in our minds that keep us from achieving stillness.

With keeping the body still and the mind focused on specific breathing patterns we can open up areas that have been blocked or stagnant and allow new fresh feelings to surface and bring back a deep sense of calmness. Anxiety, depression and fear are usually the underlying reasons we become stagnant and withdraw. The cycle is broken when you feel the transitions that meditation teaches us.

There are many types of meditations as well as many ways to practice breathing. Find what is right for you. Experiences to chose what works for you are so important. Not everyone has the same breath capacity just as everyone does not share the same physical and emotional needs. Participating in a class regularly brings that much needed experience to find what works for you.

Sitting vs. lying down can also make a difference to a person. Being comfortable in your body so pain or anxiety do not limit the experience should be of concern. Never force yourself through a meditation. Find a comfortable position so you can quiet yourself enough to feel the intention behind the meditation. Most importantly, after the class, create a space at home that is inviting so you can continue the practice. Practice 15 minutes a day, twice if possible, for at least 30 days and you will see noticeable effects in your sleep, your pain levels, your golf game and your commitment to yourself to be more centered and in a happier place with less stress and worry.

There is only one place to start, now.

Find a comfortable place to be, close your eyes, soften your body and slow your breath.

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