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Morning meditation is a great way to start your day off bright and refreshed. But not everyone is a morning person, and many people find it difficult to find the time or motivation to start their morning with meditation. Many successful people find it essential to start their mornings with a few minutes of breathing and silence to kick start their day with a clear mind and a productive attitude. If you have been struggling to start a morning meditation routine, we’ve gathered some great tips and expert advice to help beginners get started.
Why meditate in the Morning?
There are many benefits of meditation in general, but there are several benefits for practicing your meditation sessions first thing in the morning. Numerous studies have suggested that meditation has various health benefits–most notably, reducing stress. Meditation gives the mind a break, offering an opportunity to detach from the chaos of our lives and seek shelter in silence and stillness. A morning practice will set the tone for your day and help you be more energized, focused, content, and optimistic. Here are a few other great benefits:
- Boosts your enthusiasm and energy levels.
- Helps you be more positive and improves overall mental health.
- Increases your focus and concentration so you can be more engaged in your work.
- Encourages you to clear your mind of negative thought patterns and let go of emotional baggage.
- Reduces your overall worry and anxiety levels throughout the day.
- Creates a balanced perspective for engaging with your co-workers.
If the idea of sitting down to meditate for several minutes every morning doesn’t appeal to you, you can find opportunities in ordinary moments to meditate. Just a few moments of mindfulness in your routine can bring you greater energy, focus, and calm.
When should you meditate in the morning
Many practitioners find morning to be the easiest time to practice, whether they’re choosing mindfulness, mantra meditation, visualization, or another technique. You can practice at any time of the day or night, but most people agree that the ideal time to meditate is first thing in the morning. The traditional time is at sunrise or an hour and a half before, which is called Brahma Muhurt—the time of Brahman.
While this is considered the best and most auspicious time for spiritual practices, it can be challenging for most people to commit to. It is much more important to have a set routine that works for your practice and morning schedule. Creating a set morning routine means you don’t have to think about or decide what you’re going to do as soon as you wake up. This will make your morning practice a habit and an automatic part of your day.
How to start a morning meditation practice
The hardest part of starting a meditation routine is the first step! You may be unsure of how to do it, or how to stick with it; you may see the benefits of meditation but feel you don’t have the time, or simply be too busy to spare 15 minutes a day to sit still. You can make it as complicated or simple as you want it to be: lie down, sit, or stand; you can focus on your breath, your body, your mantra, or just observe your thoughts. The secret to getting started is to make it as simple as possible, and to start slowly. We recommend beginners try the following:
- Decide on a length and commit to sitting the entire time.
- Choose a technique or style that works best with your personality.
- It’s best to use a seated meditation pose. Find a comfortable chair, a spot on the sofa, or a cushion in a spot on the floor. You can even sit in your car before or after your commute!
- Find a nice, quiet, comfortable space that supports your practice.
- Set a timer.
- Support your body to minimize distracting aches. Use pillows, yoga props, blankets or whatever is most accessible. If you are committed to your practice, using a proper meditation cushion is recommended. There are plenty of shapes and sizes to order online.
- Maintain good posture.
- Close or soften your eyes.
- Take slow, deep breaths.
Tips for starting an early morning meditation routine
When you’re starting out with a brand new morning meditation, it’s important to experiment with the different types and techniques. But don’t forget, whichever type of practice you eventually decide to stick with, you can always explore other traditions later on. If you’re not yet ready to call a full meditation practice your own, start looking for meditative moments during otherwise mundane events. For example, you can take a 1-minute walking meditation to your car or practice mindfulness while preparing your morning coffee. Here are other tips to consider when you are starting out:
- Get rid of any unnecessary noises or distractions, like TV and smart phones.
- Avoid coffee before your practice, to prevent the caffeine from over stimulating your mind.
- To help wake up, try splashing warm or cold water on your face.
- Make it easy! If you need to, start with 5-10 minutes and work your way up.
- Find a local class or group. While there are great resources for learning meditation online, it’s always best to find a local teacher to help you get started.
- Don’t be discouraged—find inspiration and community support to keep you motivated.
- Set realistic goals and expectations. Meditation is a challenging practice but it will get easier over time. It can take up to three months to notice a difference in how you feel.
- Schedule it! Regardless of how or when you meditate, the key is doing it consistently every morning.
- Listen to a guided meditation or use one of the many mindfulness apps to get you started.
- Wear comfortable clothing that does not tug or pull against your body.
- When you realize your thoughts are drifting, return your attention back to your point of focus without judgement or criticism.
- Find fun and creative ways to infuse your meditations with inspiration.
How do I know if morning is right for me?
Everyone has their own unique approach to meditation, and it’s important to keep in mind that the impact of any practice depends on the individual. For many, the morning is the best time to take a few moments to breathe deeply, quiet the mind, and simply be with yourself. But if you aren’t able to stick with it, don’t give up—it may not be the right time for you.