“Navigating the depths of consciousness on your own can be tough, especially for beginners. Guided meditations provide the assistance of a teacher or guide to walk you through the process and help you find a calm and peaceful state – one step at a time.” (The Chopra Center)
Many people have heard of meditation and the numerous benefits of the practice, and wonder how to get started meditating. Engaging in meditation is a great way to lower stress levels and relax your mind and body. People who experience chronic stress, anxiety, depression, and other symptoms (and who doesn’t nowadays?) can benefit from starting and continuing the practice of meditation.
What Is Guided Meditation?
Guided meditation is a meditation practice led by an experienced teacher – either in person, via a live broadcast, or using pre-recorded audio or video. Although guided meditation can be used by anyone, it is more frequently used by those new to meditation. The assistance and support of a teacher can be helpful when first beginning your practice.
Guided meditations generally teach participants:
- The basics of meditation techniques
- Instruction and insight into how your mind and thoughts work
- How to better understand and relate to your thoughts and emotions
- How to use meditation techniques in daily life
- And how to settle the mind and body for meditation.
In modern times, meditation is a great practice that should be on everyone’s mind. Engaging in meditation each day can retrain your mind at the conscious and subconscious levels and can begin to shift your outlook. Starting a meditation practice is easy, and it only requires setting aside a few minutes each day. You’re going to be sitting in silence and noticing your thoughts. Some people have a lot of trouble sitting still – but no worries – there are many different meditative practices that can help even the most restless mind and body reap the benefits.
Guided meditations are recorded meditations that lead the listener/practitioner through a series of steps – including visualizations, breath control, sounds, and more in order to create a new reality. Listening to guided meditations each day can be an easy, low-stress way to get started with meditation.
How To Start Meditating
When beginning a meditation practice, many people prefer to begin with short sequences of around 5 minutes. Adding a 5-minute meditation once or twice per day can be completely transformative when practiced consistently. After five minutes of meditation becomes easy to accomplish – in 21 to 28 days – add five minutes to your meditation time. Start with the intention of making time for your meditative practice – you are worth it!
Many experienced practitioners meditate for 20-30 minutes each day. Others who are deeply engaged in meditation as a spiritual practice work up to meditating for up to 2 hours each morning. Don’t feel you have to start there – meditation is a practice that is accessible for everyone who wants to improve their life experience and lower their stress levels.
Many styles of meditation can be done throughout your daily activities – like mantras, affirmation, and loving-kindness. When you engaged in guided meditation, it is important to give attention to the practice by sitting or lying quietly where there are reduced distractions and noises.
Find a guided meditation that is the proper length for your practice.
Guided meditations can be five minutes long, and can range in content from positive affirmations to guided imagery to color visualization therapy and combinations of methods. There is a lot of variety in the topics and ideas to choose from.
A simple online search should reveal plenty of options for recorded meditations, and we have recorded sample meditations here on this site as well. Try to choose a guided meditation by a teacher or professional you trust and can connect with. Set the intention to heal and for beneficial outcomes for your efforts.
Many guided meditations are available for online streaming for free or can be downloaded to your device for easier access. You can also have a personalized guided meditation created by a teacher or other professional. It is possible to find guided meditations on many different topics, including self-empowerment, health and wellness, manifestation, and other lifestyle improvement topics.
Many guided meditations invoke elements of nature, animals, plants, colors, and other visualizations to further engage your mind and body and create a new vibration of energy.
Why Guided Meditation?
In guided meditation, the teacher leads the listener through a series of visualizations or journeys to engage the mind and body and establish relaxation and the space for insight. Listening to a guided meditation each day helps to reprogram the conscious and subconscious mind and can be a great entry into a consistent meditation practice.
When the audio and visualization are done day after day, it is possible to create a new reality and a new experience of the world. Like other positive habits, consistent practice for 21 to 28 days helps to firmly establish the habit. Meditation is a practice in becoming aware of our ideas about life. So, when we meditate, we are reflecting on our experiences and allowing a different understanding of how we choose to let events affect us.
Committing to listening to a guided meditation every day creates a regularity of practice that is dependable. This practice can lower stress levels and can also allow space for long-term change in lifestyle.