BY Von Bacani

There has arguably been no wellness practice as widely mentioned and practiced as meditation. An activity that has existed for millennia, meditation began as a religious practice and has endured and diversified. Today, there are many forms of meditation (including secular practices), however all forms claim to have the same effect: to relieve stress and improve overall health.

The hype for meditation persists in the present day, and so I skeptically decided to try mindfulness meditation every day for one week. The basic premise of mindfulness meditation is to eliminate all thoughts and to focus your attention on your breathing and the sensations in your body. The first day felt extremely awkward – I could not get my racing thoughts to simmer down. I was thinking about the readings I had to complete, what I was going to eat for lunch – you name it!

Nonetheless, I persisted. I spent 10 to 15 minutes per day over the course of 7 days to refine my meditation technique. I found that it really helped to consult various mobile apps with vocal guides to teach you proper posture, breathing techniques and mindfulness philosophy which can be applied to everyday life. It was admittedly difficult to maintain focus during the first sessions, but what kept me motivated was my desire to clear my thoughts and find a simple activity to reduce my stress from the daily grind. Besides, this was a better use of my time than mindlessly scrolling through social media for 10 to 15 minutes.

Mindfulness practices like meditation should ideally be long-term commitments, however I have learned so much after just a week of practising it. Meditating for just 10 to 15 minutes a day enabled me to focus on the task at hand without thinking of my other commitments. In other words, daily meditation is an ideal way to sharpen your focus, to calm your mind and to keep things in perspective. Mindful meditation is not a race; It takes practice, yet the goal is simply to learn to be present and not overthink.

All in all, the uncomfortable moments learning how to meditate paid off. It is never too much to take a brief moment out of your schedule to unwind and be present, knowing it will recalibrate your brain and allow you to rekindle your energy for the rest of the day.

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