For someone who worries a lot, suffers from negative thoughts or has trouble falling asleep, meditation can help. But also when you are feeling perfectly fine meditation is beneficial, you will feel (more) energetic and your mental resilience will grow. You can find thousands of meditations on the internet: you can visualize, focus on your breathing or meditate while in motion. Finding a type that suits you well can be a bit of a search. Yet it can bring you a lot! We list a few meditation forms for you.
This form is about observing. Observing your body, your thoughts and your emotions without attaching a value to them. One of the first things you learn when you start using a Headspace module. You soon learn that you can see your thoughts as cars that pass slowly or quickly and all you have to do is look at these cars. Sounds easy, but we tend to run after thoughts or try to stop them. This form of meditation trains you in such a way that your thoughts won’t take a run with you and find peace faster. This type of meditation is good for when you worry a lot.
We can all visualize, we do it without even noticing. During a meditation session with visualization, you consciously consider the images in your mind. You can recall images of something that has already happened, something that is yet to come or you can, for example, pretend you are on the beach. The sun and the sound of the sea will let you relax. You can also imagine how your day will go. For example, do you have to do presentation which you are nervous for? Try to play this moment in your head with a positive ending, for example enthusiastic reactions from the audience or an overwhelming applause. In the beginning it is difficult to take up this type of meditation alone. There are a lot of guided meditations, they help with stress, anxiety or make sure you fall asleep better.
Yoga is a moving form of meditation and Yoga also has many different forms. During Vinyasa Yoga you focus on your breathing and move from one position to the other based on the rhythm of your breathing. Focusing on your breathing improves your yoga flow and ensures peace of mind. You are constantly on the move, unlike Yin yoga. During Yin yoga you will find peace because you take the time for the different poses. You use the postures to feel what goes on in your body. It is good to do this form of yoga when you have already done something active (Vinyasa yoga or swimming, running). Our Yoga expert Esther shares something new about yoga every month. Don’t know where to start? Follow a video of Esther!
You’ve probably heard the phrase “Breathe deeply in through your nose and out through your mouth.” You can do breathing exercises (or meditations) anywhere. It is nice if you have a number that you can do in between, when, for example, you experience stress. Meditating does not have to take hours at all! Just taking 5 minutes for yourself can make a world of difference. For example, try this is: breathe in deeply through your nose as far as you can and then hold your breath for 5 seconds. Then release your breath through your mouth. Repeat this a few times and feel how you react to this. You immediately released some tension!
Mindfulness is about being in the “now”. We are often lost in thought and think of everything we need to do later. Mindfulness is “living with attention”, focusing on what you are doing now. Imagine you are in your car, you are in a traffic jam and your thoughts begin: what groceries do I need, what is the quickest route to the supermarket, what is a quick recipe so that I am on time at the gym … Mindfulness means that you let go of these thoughts and look at the cars around you, the scenery, listen to the sound of the engine, feel the hills on your way. You perceive everything as it is, without judgement and you do not cling to it. Mindfulness improves focus and performance.
“Don’t hate, meditate”
Experiment and learn
There are a lot of Apps, videos on YouTube and meditations on Spotify to get you started:
Apps to meditate:
- InsightTimer: various meditation teachers, meditation music and sounds all in 1 app. Easy to use in English and Dutch. For example, search for stress, anxiety or sleep for specific meditations.
- Headspace: probably heard of it;)! The modules of Headspace let you get acquainted with meditation in a nice way, good for beginners.
Nice playlists on Spotify:
- NiceDay Binaural Beats: This playlist is full of music that allows you to fully relax.
- Yoga feels: not just instrumental but nice tunes to relax with or to get your own yoga flow
Yoga from your own home
- Take a live yoga class from your own home with our yoga expert Esther or follow a video lesson from Adrienne.
Which form will you try? Or do you already have a favorite?