There’s a sweeping interest in meditation, as well there should be seeing as it’s one of the most effective self-care methods to help with everything from stress and anxiety to better sleep, increased focus and a general sense of calm — and it’s free! So why is it so difficult to get started, or stay committed to such a helpful practice? Like most good things, we make it harder than it needs to be, and the difficulty we attribute to it is based in our own fear. And fear begins in the mind, so it’s an ironic twist.

When people ask me how to meditate, I think of five simple words: Sit down and shut up. That’s how you meditate. I know it may sound crass, but it’s to the point. The only other thing recommended is that you find a focal point, usually your breath. It’s that simple. The real challenge isn’t in how to meditate, but in being still and quiet with yourself. Here is where the intimidation may begin, we may actually start to recognize and hold ourselves accountable for our self-care. This is scary, but rewarding, and the epitome of health.

The longer we practice, the more we learn. We learn to listen to our thoughts and mind, to feel our emotions and to sit with them. This practical method enhances and deepens your relationship with yourself while taming the mind and allowing authentic emotions to flow. The more we resist our thoughts and emotions, the more we trap them in our body. If you can take 3-5 minutes out of your day and practice sitting down and shutting up, you will find relief, as well as being more available and present to yourself. See what happens!

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Leah Guy

Leah Guy is author of the new book The Fearless Path: A Radical Awakening to Emotional Healing and Inner Peace. She is also a transpersonal healer, survivor and media personality. For more info visit www.LeahGuy.com/book.

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