4 Meditation Practices to Diversify Your Routine
Do you need any extra motivation to step on that yoga mat or balance your chakras? Different meditation practices offer various benefits for your mental, emotional, and even physical health. If you are on the fence about trying a new meditation, these practices should be taken into consideration.
Different Meditation Practices
People might think that yoga is simply an exercise to help increase your flexibility, but this practice originated as a meditation and can be used to sustain health beyond flexibility.
Yoga therapy can actually help relieve many aches and lingering pains. Relieving pressure from your neck may be as simple as holding a few positions while focusing on your breath. This practice is also used to prevent more serious symptoms like degenerative arthritis or problems with the spinal disks.By simply creating more movement in areas of cartilage that we don’t normally use, we can maximize the efficiency of our muscles.
Many other yoga practitioners claim that using this form of meditation can even alleviate existing symptoms. In one case, Timothy McCall, board-certified physician specializing in internal medicine, explains how yoga techniques relieved pain from his thoracic outlet syndrome.
Guided Imagery Meditation
Guided Imagery can be a very powerful tool of putting good energy out into the world. It allows you to surrender to your own inner wisdom through a visual meditation. It all begins with breathing. As you breathe through your nose and exhale positive thoughts out into the world, you can create stimulating visualizations by imagining that you are in a safe, soothing environment.
This practice is considered a kind of self-hypnosis that utilizes sensory images as the true language of the body. In a state of utter relaxation, the goal is to be hyper-focused on your visualization that you lose sense of your physical environment.
This altered state can be a source of internal strength and skill. You will become capable of rapid healing, growth, learning, and performance if practiced regularly. Don’t worry about “doing it right.” It is best to engage the senses as they naturally come to you. This is why you shouldn’t worry about losing track of the guided imagery mantra narrative.
Guided Imagery can be a very emotional, therapeutic experience for many, sometimes soothing headaches and relieving stress. Normal responses may include tearing up, runny nose, coughing, yawning, heaviness in the limbs, tingling along the scalp or hands, or minor involuntary muscle movements. Bellruth Naparstek, who founded Health Journeys, conducted research on the benefits of guided imagery and found the intuitive and creative process can actually open the heart and evoke feelings of love.
Healing imagery has many approaches, some of which include: Feeling State, End State, Energetic, Cellular, Physiological, Metaphoric, Psychological, and Spiritual. A guided meditation can offer a very freeing and beneficial experience.
Mantras are beneficial because they can help balance moods and create an overall sense of wellbeing. This is because our thoughts naturally reflect our mood. It can also help shed neurotic habits and wake the divine light within us. Mantras are a form of meditation where you select a word or series of words to repeat over and over. The phrases can have personal meanings or be more general. The process of physically speaking repetitive phrases can also ignite a remarkable vibratory sensation that brings us into unison within ourselves.
Many people who practice mantras describe it as a very soothing experience. Dr. Vajia Sharma, licensed health service provider, explains how the practice has personally benefitted his life, “So far I have been impressed with how much mantras can help me soften the rough edges of the aggravating symptoms, focus the mind on something else other than the body and block the rising wave of toxic emotions. If I am allowed to take the poetic license here, I would say that mantras are virtual ‘pain killers,’ ‘tranquilizers,’ ‘energizers,’ ‘mood changers,’ ‘breath trainers’ and above all a ‘high potency spiritual vitamin,’ all rolled into one capsule!”
In Indian culture, a chakra is thought to be of the center of spiritual power in the human body. There are typically seven chakras and are often realized through a color system. Some believe it to be a journey through the rainbow. The colors represent an aspect of the visible light spectrum with its particular frequency. The seven chakra colors are believed to be:
(Red) Root Chakra – Red is the slowest of wavelengths in the visible spectrum, but also is the most vibrant of colors. It pushes all of our energy and attention outward. The color also signals danger to us, which is why we use red for stop signs and stop lights. Red means that our connection with the Earth carries the promise of survival.
(Orange) Sacral Chakra – Orange is the color of vitality and strength. It has a direct correlation to the heat of the sun. The chakra is located in the pelvic area, which relates to our “gut feeling” and the deepest stillness of wisdom. It is where we find bliss.
(Yellow) Solar Plexus Chakra – Yellow represents strength, will, and personal power. The power of this chakra allows you to assert yourself and trust your inner wisdom. People who are typically drawn to yellow are also drawn to intellectual pursuits. The color is a symbol of knowledge.
(Green) Heart Chakra – The Heart Chakra is composed of yellow (solar plexus) and blue (throat). Combined, it is the color of nature, grass, and trees. This green creates the energy of love and transformation. You can be more in touch with the spiritual aspect of yourself and find true compassion by opening this chakra.
(Blue) Throat Chakra – The color blue is typically associated with the sky. It creates a peaceful, serene, and tranquil feeling. The chakra allows you to slow things down, be still, and listen to your own voice. It also lets you unclutter your mind and move to a place of faith and trust. Unlike the other colors, blue cannot be observed on a material plane. Instead, it is a mindset where you can express your authentic self.
(Indigo) Third Eye Chakra – Indigo is the color we typically associate with night. The chakra allows you to access high spiritual vibrations. The third eye gives you the ability to recognize patterns where you can truly experience wisdom. This third vision can naturally become an act of will.
(Violet) Crown Chakra – Violet is the color of spirituality and reconciliation. It allows you to feel connected with other things inside the universe. The color is cleansing and purifying. It offers a sense of wholeness and represents rebirth. You will be able to find and understand the seat of your wisdom as the chakra unfolds. It is also connected with the sadness of letting something go.
Chakra Meditation is focused on the heart, which it thought to be the center of life and love. Through this focus, chakra meditation can help with physical, emotional and mental issues such as thyroid problems, lack of willpower, or feeling disconnected to life’s reality. That is why the main goal of the practice is to create a balanced environment. Through this balance, many people learn to live their life at a fuller and more complete standard.
Although there is a wide spectrum of meditation practices, each technique caters to specific needs. Whether you are looking to better your posture or create more balance in your emotional life, there are specific strategies that you can use. And, while all meditations are not suited for everyone, there are a variety of options you can choose from if you are looking to heal certain aspects of your life.
Alexandra Zuccaro is a recent graduate from Loyola Marymount University with a B.A in English. She a strong interest in journalism and hopes to pursue a career in the field.