I’m feeling down, can meditation help?
You bet! This is one of the most common reasons people come to Lifeflow. It may be that there are situations in your life that are getting you down, or just an ongoing sense of feeling low or being sick of the daily grind. Or perhaps you’re suffering from fatigue.
The good news is meditation is one of the most effective tools for restoring our physical and emotional wellbeing – and most importantly helping us to actually feel better.
At Lifeflow, the way we teach meditation starts from the ground up.
How does a low mood happen?
So much of our busy modern lives relies on being very active in our thinking mind, and engaging in all sorts of activities that can lead to us losing touch with our bodies. Working with computers and screens, driving cars and sitting in traffic, and being constantly hooked into an online world can leave us feeling out of sorts but without always knowing why. On top of that we may be dealing with situations that are genuinely very difficult. Adrenaline is coursing through our system and we chew up our natural reserves of energy very quickly. We may become locked into very negative ways of seeing things.
Pause through the senses
When we meditate however, what we are learning to do is switch our focus back to our senses and our bodies – and when we do this skilfully our thinking minds are able to heave a sigh of relief! It’s as if we’ve found a way to touch the ‘pause’ button for a while.
If we are able to take a few minutes (or even a few moments) to do this in a quiet space, we find that our whole system can shift to a calmer and deeper state where it can naturally restore itself. At Lifeflow we call this a state of balance.
How does this work?
This works for us in two ways:
- Physically our body can relax – muscles can loosen off, blood can flow more easily, our organs can function better, and our immune system also can work more effectively – and all of this can lead to pleasant feelings of calm, warmth and energy in the body;
- Mentally we can learn to let go of the thoughts and worries that surround us, even just for a while – and we can find a calmer, steadier state of mind that’s more in tune with what’s actually going on around us.
So in this way we’re learning to balance our mind and body – not being stuck on one side all the time but learning to move from one side to the other and give our minds a break for a while, which in turn lets our body relax.
Also, it doesn’t have to mean sitting still – in fact, one of the best ways to access this is with gentle movement or physical exercise. In our Learn to Meditate course at Lifeflow we teach a variety of methods for people to access this experience – but however we get there, we can start to refresh our energy, and then see the world around us with fresh eyes.
We might find we are more open to the simple things in our life that give us pleasure, or the things we do have that we can be grateful for. We may also be able to look at situations in our life with a fresh sense of perspective, and see new ways forward – or find acceptance and even peace in ourselves or in our life situations as they are.
Importantly as we realise we have this ability to find calm and balance through meditation techniques, it can give us ongoing confidence that can we bounce back from the difficulties of life and from the ups and downs of our emotions.
Like any skill, it benefits from expert guidance and finding the best way for you to learn it – there is no ‘one-size-fits-all’ meditation technique. Meditating in a group can also enhance the experience and open the door to meeting people in similar situations or with similar interests.