I should be well qualified to write this post because I am a beginner. Although I have only been trying mindfulness for maybe 6 months regularly, and maybe a few years on-and-off before that, I’ve found a few things that might be useful to others who want to get started in this.
Later I’ll look into other aspects of meditation, including the research behind it, so if you want the science before jumping into it you’ll have to wait (or look elsewhere).
Step 1 – Watch this video
This is Jon Kabat-Zinn explaining a few things about mindfulness meditation, what it is and why to do it. Then he talks you through it a little later in the video so you get some practical experience of it too.
Step 2 – Get some books
I find it really helpful to get immersed in new things. Books are the main way to do this, especially if they are written by people who have gotten to where you want to get. Plus you can learn more about meditation and the ins and outs of it. I recommend The Attention Revolution, and The Joy of Living, but if you know any better ones then leave a comment.
Step 3 – Stick to a regular schedule
You need to clock up a good number of hours before you notice anything. Or so I’m told. So try to do this tenaciously every day, and definitely don’t do it when there’s a potential upcoming disturbance. If you’re expecting a call at roughly the same time, you’ll never settle down.
That’s about all the advice I’m qualified to offer (which is why this is called “meditation for beginners”). Are you experienced with meditation? Why not add step 4 in the comments?
Before you can begin practicing meditation you do need to understand what it is and why you need to use this method of relaxation. The brain is the primary tool that you’ll use to define this process. But, you may not realize that when the brain is in a “normal” state that it actually is very abnormal in what it is doing.