By now, most of us are well aware that the benefits of meditation should make doing it on a regular basis a no-brainer. Yet only a small percentage of the population actually meditates on a daily basis. Why could this be? For starters, meditating can be perceived as challenging. Just like in a restorative yoga class, your main priority is to calm and quiet the mind. In our fast paced world, this can be one of the toughest thing to do, especially when we’ve got other stressors and anxious thoughts popping up whenever we try to take a moment for ourselves. Sometimes it’s easier just to keep busy than to face our own thoughts. Facing those thoughts however, is exactly how one is going to change and transform them to become more empowering, positive and abundance oriented.
My husband is one of those people who really wants to meditate, but he’s always had a difficult time just “sitting there”. In fact, who am I kidding, I’m one of those people too! Being the awesome holistic bio/life hacker that he is, I’ve watched him “hack meditation” for himself, and over the years, we’ve put together a short list of tools that help us get into flow and experience the benefits of quieting the mind in ways other than just sitting on a cushion with your eyes closed. Here we go!
1. HeartMath: Caleb got me the Inner Balance Trainer as a gift because he noticed I wasn’t taking enough time for myself to calm the mind and do my breathing exercises. This handy little gadget comes with an iPhone app, that you can use for 5-10 minutes a day to relieve tension and stress, calm your worries and literally change your DNA according to HeartMath.org. Check it out here.
2. Floating in a Sensory Deprivation Tank: If you have no idea what I’m talking about, don’t worry. Floating was a once very popular activity that sort of died out decades ago and is now making a major come-back. In a sensory deprivation tank, you’re literally floating on the surface of about 10 inches of water and 1000 lbs. of epsom salts.
Inside your tank, it’s completely dark, with no external stimulation or sensory input. You’re alone, floating in the darkness, with your thoughts. A lot of people ask if it’s scary or if you get claustrophobic, and this is not a silly question, but my advice is just try it. I’ve watched people with even extreme fears of small or dark spaces go into a float tank and come out enriched.
Floating comes with a host of benefits. It’s scientifically proven to reduce cortisol levels, help with anxiety, ease panic attacks, assist with weight loss and even heal away addictions. If you want to learn more about Floating, I’d suggest you check out FloatHouse.ca or see their Facebook page. Caleb and I go to Float House on a regular basis and it’s one of the most relaxing, rejuvenating and life enhancing practices. We often refer to floating as “meditation on steroids”. If you’re not local to the Vancouver area, do a quick Google search for float centers near you and go get your float on!
3. BrainWave entrainment: Basically you’re using sound waves and different layers of sound frequencies to alter your brain waves and synchronize both hemispheres of the brain. If you want to check out a few companies who are using this technology appropriately, check out Hemi-Sync and BrainWave Mind Voyages.
4. Chanting: Yep, I went there. I actually am suggesting that you take up chanting to calm your mind and bring more peace into your life. You don’t have to dance naked around a fire, but it’s best if you do this in a quiet and safe space, alone or with a group of people who hold the intention to open their hearts and come into a more blissful state. We know from HeartMath.org that it’s possible to sync our heart waves just as we sync our brain waves when we sit in the same room as someone. But did you know that the heart waves you emit are actually larger than those of your brain? You can find Kirtan chants or other meditation chants by searching on Youtube or Google. One of my favorites is Om Mani Padmi Hum which you can read about here or listen to here.
What other meditation hacks do you use to get into flow?
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