How to Meditate

Too many people have dismissed the art of meditation as hokey and ancient, but that is their loss. Meditation is one of the best ways to calm yourself down after a long day of work. Think of meditation as a way for your body to purify the mind of all poisons. It’s like going on an eating cleanse; you’re trying to reduce all of the harmful waste in your body. Well, did you know that your mind has waste as well? And that waste can be as harmful is toxins and poisons in your body.

Waste Thoughts

Did you know you can literally worry yourself sick? One time when I had just graduated school, I was left unemployed for a long time. I couldn’t even get a job at the corner store down the road. This worried me so much that I actually fell ill because of the stress and worry. Your thoughts are the software that controls your body’s hardware; if the software is infected by viruses it can damage the hardware as well. Meditation is the antivirus for your mind. You know how a bug trap from Insect Murderer will kill all of the pests in your home? Meditation seeks out and destroys the pesky thoughts in your head that tear you down.

The Two Types of Meditation

There are two kinds of meditation, and I actually believe one of them is much better than the other. The first type is the religious, “clear your mind” meditation. This kind of meditation is not as useful for the everyday person. The second type is mindfulness meditation, and that is the kind that I practice myself.

The way you start to mindfully meditate can be summarized as “observing without judging.” Here’s how you start. Find a calm place where you can be alone for a while. This can be in an open field, on the roof of your apartment… Anywhere you can find to chill out for a while. The important part is to be alone. Next, simply observe your environment. If you’re outside, notice the trees and the grass around you. Look carefully at the textures. If you see a tree that you would normally think was ugly, DON’T JUDGE. Judging involves emotion. What we are doing here is just observing. There is no good or bad right now. Everything is just THERE. This forces your mind to be in the present moment; you’re not worrying about the past or the future right now. You’re just THERE.

Why Does This Work?

Most worry comes from something that has already happened (which you can’t help now!) or something that has not YET happened (which you don’t know yet!). Does it really make sense to worry about something that hasn’t even happened yet? You can’t face troubles when you’re panicked. You have to be calm. And the way to do this is to “check in” to your environment and mindfully observe what is going on around you, without any judgement.