Meditation has been practiced for thousands of years and science has proven its spiritual, psychological, and physiological benefits. You may have heard someone tell you to “clear your mind”, but it’s a lot easier to say than do.
Although it’s almost impossible to completely clear your mind, there are some things that you can do to achieve a certain calmness and relaxation to it.
By doing certain activities to relax both your body and mind, you may be able to easily “clear” your mind for meditation later on which will help you feel more fulfilled after the activity.
Acknowledging the connection between your mind and body is one of the most crucial things for improved mediation.
In this article, we will discuss three significant things that you can do to help you on how to clear your mind for meditation. Take note that these items will include certain activities that you need to do in order to relax your body and mind.
Relaxing Your Body
Before meditating, make sure that your body is relaxed and free from any tension. Since you need to keep your body at bay when you’re meditating, it’s important that your body has received the right nutrients and you’ve exercised.
1. Take a short walk.
Going on a quick stroll in your neighborhood can help you notice, concentrate, and visualize all the present tensions in your body. Look for an area where there’s low traffic, lesser people, and lesser noise so that you can concentrate on yourself and the nature around you.
You may notice that if you walk slower, you can release the tensions in your body, but if you go faster you will release endorphins which can result in clearing your mind better.
Take note that doing any type of exercise can help you clear your mind. Whether you play a sport, go biking around your area, or lift some weights, this will help you decompress when you’re meditating later on.
2. Doing breathing exercises.
One of the easiest things that you can do to relax your body is by doing some breathing exercises. When inhaling, make sure that your lungs fully inflate by breathing through your nose. When exhaling, you remove all the air from your lungs through your nose.
The average counting to do this technique is by inhaling in four counts, holding your breath in seven counts, and exhaling in four counts. But if it’s your first time, you can find a count that best works for you.
3. The power of warm milk.
One of the most effective ways to relax your body, and even help you doze off, is by drinking a warm glass of milk. The trick to drink your milk properly before meditating or slipping is by slowly sipping it.
4. Take a short nap.
Taking a nap for 30 minutes, not longer than that can make you more focused all throughout the day. After napping and before meditating, make sure to do light stretches first. The nap will help you restart your day and lessen your stress level.
5. Drink herbal tea.
Science has tested and proven that herbal tea will not only make you feel healthy, but it can also lessen your stress level and help calm your body and mind.
Chamomile and peppermint are just two of the best types of teas to drink before meditating. For a better experience, take a warm bath before drinking your tea and meditate afterward.
6. Choose to wear comfortable clothes.
15 minutes before you start your meditation, change to comfortable clothes so that you won’t feel any tension in your body.
Choosing clothes made from cotton will help you feel more relaxed because it’s flexible and less scratchy. Using the same workout attire is also good if you’re comfortable with it.
7. Do a complete body scan.
Ensuring that your body is at ease before meditating is important to avoid any unwanted thoughts during your activity. Take note of all the parts that have tension or pain and tell yourself that you will work on them after meditating.
Relaxing Your Mind
After doing the activities we’ve mentioned above to help you relax your body, it’s now time to relax your mind. This is important because you would want to make sure that all your attention is on your meditation activity. Here are some of the things that you can do to relax your mind:
1. Make a gratitude list.
One of the creative ways to start making your gratitude list is by choosing one person and listing down at least 10 things that you’re thankful for about them. Each day, focus on a certain person.
Repeat this before meditating so that you have something positive to focus on. If you want, you can also talk to that person after meditating over the phone.
2. Make a to-do list.
Writing down your to-do list for the day before meditating will help you focus on your meditation later on.
Set aside at least 5 minutes of your day and try to write down everything that you need to do whether it’s just for the day or the entire week. Once you’re done writing, don’t think about the tasks until you’re finished meditating.
Doing a to-do list will not only help you focus on your meditation exercise, but it can also help you be more organized all throughout the day. There’s no need to write everything in order. You can do it by free-writing your thoughts so that your mind won’t get exhausted.
3. Put your phone on silent mode and put it away.
One of the most important things that you need to do before meditating is by putting away your phone so you won’t be distracted from it. As you start preparing yourself, make sure that you get away from electronics that may get your attention during your meditation activity.
4. Focus on one thing.
Most meditators focus on one thing when they are meditating. Whether it’s a certain place, item, event, person, or idea, focus all your mental energy on this thought as much as you can. Once your thoughts start wandering, return to this idea that you have and refocus yourself.
Creating a Safe Space for Meditation
Once you’re done doing the activities to relax your body and mind, it’s now time to prepare yourself for meditation. Here are some of the things that you can do when meditating:
1. Identify an area for your meditation
We suggest that you look for an area where you can do your meditation. It should be a place where you can go every day for this activity.
You should feel comfortable in this area and should be quiet enough for your to focus your mind. Whether it’s in your bedroom, kitchen, attic, or living room, you should be able to feel safe.
2. Clean the area.
You wouldn’t be able to clear your mind properly for meditation if the area around you is messy. A little disorganized is okay as long as you won’t mind it while you’re concentrating.
Once you’re done, make sure to calm your body and mind about the current environment that you are in.
3. Try different meditation positions.
Different people prefer different meditation positions. Find the best position where you feel most comfortable.
Whether you’re sitting on the floor with your legs crossed, stretching out, sitting upright in a chair, walking around, or laying down on your back or stomach, make sure that it will help you focus on your breathing and calming your mind.
4. Setting the right atmosphere.
Some people like to meditate in a dim room or with scented candles around them. You can do whatever you want as long as you’re comfortable. Also, some people like to light up some candles during meditation because it helps them refocus their minds by looking at the flame.
5. Practicing active meditation.
Active meditation allows you to think of a certain thought, feeling, or event that will occupy all your attention and creates lesser room for other thoughts. Active meditation works like:
- Picking one word that describes the emotion that you would like to feel. It can be Peace, Joy, Hope, Happy, Love, and other emotions.
- Closing your eyes, focusing on the word, and visualizing it in your head.
- Picking a certain color that you think best suits the word that you’re thinking of.
- Fill the background in your mind with the color that you chose.
- Once you’ve filled your mind with the color, slowly spell out the word that you chose in your mind. Do it one letter at a time.
- On the colored background, write each letter with the same color. Do it over and over again while whispering to yourself the letters.
- Do it for 10 minutes. You can set a timer to the given timeframe so that you’ll know when to stop.
6. Practice meditating every day.
Meditating every day will help you build a routine. Stick to the same time, same area, and same routine to ensure that your body will know when to relax and your mind will slowly relax.
By relaxing your mind, relaxing your body, and preparing a safe space for meditation, you will slowly clear your mind for this activity. You’re not only teaching yourself how to be calmer, but you’re also practicing decluttering your mind and the environment around you.