Basic Breathing Meditation

This is the ‘classic’ learning meditation to begin with, that can be expanded into most of the more advanced meditation practices.

Take Notice of the Feelings of Your Breath

Have you ever really noticed exactly what your breath feels like, as it rushes past your nostrils? Few have, but it is a very handy focus for meditation. Most meditation schools teach that the ability to focus on one thing

Notice how your breath changes over a single breath (and ultimately changes over a 15 minute meditation).

Tibetans traditionally inhale blocking each nostril, to focus on the differences between different nostrils, before they begin.

‘Follow’ Your Breath

Many people find it useful to count their breaths, usually from 1-10, as a good way to start their meditation, or even as the main substance of it.

Watching your breath is not easy, so don’t get frustrated. Just gently try to notice each breath. Thoughts and distractions will come to your mind during the meditation. Just focus on them for a small time, then let them go with your breath. If you find yourself getting completely lost in thoughts, simply return with a smile to ‘one’.

If a thought or emotion comes up, simply notice it. If you wish to expand this meditation, when an emotion arises, give it priority over watching the breath, until it subsides. Then continue as before.

Continue for 20 Minutes

You should start meditating a small amount (say, 5 minutes), and increase this gradually. Many people find that 20 minutes a day is the amount required to make a dramatic difference to their lives.

If you don’t have a timer handy, 10 minutes is around 100 breaths, and 20 minutes around 200 breaths. Who knew that simply counting their breaths to 200 was all it took to have increased happiness and outside perspective.