How to Meditate For Powerful Stress Relief
How many times have you felt overwhelmed, panicky, or chased through your day by obligations, deadlines, work demands, children, relationships, bills, illness, you name it. How many times have you read or been told to relax, and stop worrying about anything that is bothering you? How many times has that worked?
It is impossible to simply stop worrying when you experience involuntary hormonal and biochemical changes. This automatic stress response, also called the fight-or-flight reaction, puts your body in alarm mode: heart rate speeds up, breath becomes shallow, and our muscles tense. When the source of the stress is not life threatening, your body stays in an extended state of tension and eventually begins to take on illness from the stress response.
The only way out of this stress response cycle is to change your focus.
Meditation used correctly changes your focus and soothes the physiological response, easing the fight or flight reaction.
Many students of meditation seeking higher awareness meditate by emptying the mind. This may work for you, but if you are experiencing stress, and simply empty your mind when you meditate, the pile of problems may be waiting for you at the end of the meditation.
The focused meditation, as an alternative to the "empty mind" meditation, can be an effective tool to de-stress. If you change your focus to a powerful and positive image, thought or desire during the meditation, and envelop yourself in the feelings associated with that powerful positive image, you come out of the meditation with a change in vision.
Think of a childhood memory connected with great joy. For some this could be birthday, for others a wonderful grandparent, loved pet, favorite toy, sunny morning playing in the sand, or a thousand other things.
Now remember your feelings associated with that memory. Focus on the joy you felt, on the subtle vibration of anticipation in your body over opening a gift, going to the park, or whatever is specific to your memory. Now carry that feeling into your present and associate it with a positive image you want in your life today.
You can use relaxation music or empowering music, too. With relaxation music, you can reduce your heart rate and deepen your breathing. An excellent effect.
Most importantly, experiment. Your body will tell you what you need if you trust it.
If this seems silly to you, keep in mind the natural world works around this law of attraction. Take a look at a grove of trees or a field of grass or a flock of birds. There is a natural grouping of like species. The same applies to thoughts - like begets like.
Your focus on positive images and feelings will attract more positive images and feelings. Eventually these translate into positive actions and things. Using focused meditation elevates the electrical vibrations in your body and mind. It can literally change your life.