It has been said that the purpose of meditation is to establish a connection to your Self. When you are present with yourself you can feel who you are and connect with your personal truth.
Meditation can allow you to identify:
- Your true feelings
- What you need
- What you are grateful for, and
- What you want to create in your own life.
From a position of self-connection, you are also able to truly connect with others. Being present with yourself will allow you to give time, love, or energy to others as you choose for yourself, with no strings attached.
Self-connection can also help you to:
- Provide for yourself emotionally and physically
- Sense who you can trust
- Establish boundaries, and
- Openly negotiate your needs without manipulating others, or allowing them to manipulate you.
Self-connection can be established instantly, especially through meditation. The benefit of regular meditation is that you can train your brain into being habitually present, which will allow you to gain understanding before you react.
How to Meditate
- Begin by closing your eyes gently and with the intention to be with yourself. Think of this act as a loving gesture towards yourself. Notice the warmth of your eyelids as they close over your eyes. Repeat this a few times if you need to, until you feel yourself settle.
- Allow yourself to feel what it’s like to be you, inside your body. Direct your attention inward to focus on the physical sensations of your body and your emotions.
- As you turn your attention to your breath, begin by concentrating on your in-breath. Breathing is the one thing in this world you have control over, and at this time you can choose to breathe just for you. Breathe in through your nose very gently so that you feel a cool breeze at the tip of your nose.
- As you continue to breathe gently, imagine that there is a filter between you and the world where you can breathe what you choose. You may choose to visualise yourself breathing in gentleness, purity, nurturance and strength. Using your filter, you can refuse to breathe in the negative or draining energy of others, events, demands or dramas.
- Once you feel comfortable with the in-breath, pause for a second and choose to let your breath out gently, at your own pace. You can choose to breathe your own body gently and with love.
- As you exhale, you may choose your out-breath as an expression of you – who you really are on the inside. You can say to yourself: This is who I am. This is me. I can feel who I am in stillness. I am love, I am gentleness, I am this energy. This can be the true self that we wish to imprint on our world.
- You can come out of your meditation at this stage if it feels natural to you, or continue breathing gently and mindfully. When you have connected to yourself, you have the ability to bring yours (true) self to each situation, where you can feel what is right for you to choose, to express, and to act on.
A special place of peace
Visualise a place of peace and take yourself there for the time you need. You may like to visualise a place in nature, a beautiful room, or anywhere real or imagined that has a special or positive meaning for you.
If you need self-compassion at this point, you can lay your hand over your heart and direct towards yourself kindness, compassion, and understanding for whatever you are feeling right now. Remind yourself that you are not alone in your suffering – it is part of the human experience.
You can say to yourself:
May I be safe
May I be peaceful
May I be kind to myself
May I accept myself as I am
May I accept my life as it is just in this moment.
If you prefer audio or guided mediations, you can visit:
www.self-compassion.org for the well-studied mindfulness meditation using compassion, or
www.universalmedicine.com.au/services/free-audio-library/gentle-breath-meditation for the gentle breath meditation
Lasater, I.K. and J.H. (2009).What we say matters – Practicing Nonviolent Communication. Berkeley: Rodmell Press.
Neff, K. (2011). Self Compassion: stop beating yourself up and leave insecurity behind. London: Hodder and Stroughton).
Also inspired by:
Benhayon, S. (2011). Gentle Breath Meditation, Audio. www.universalmedicine.com.au.