This is a common question for anyone starting a new meditation practices. And it’s a great one! It can be challenging to tell, as your experience while practicing my fluctuate quite a bit! While your yoga practice can be seen as moving meditation the practice was originally developed to allow you the ability to sit still in relative comfort.
Meditation is for anyone seeking to experience a deeper connection with their inner most self.
Or said another way, meditation is for anyone desiring a more fulfilling and meaningful life experience.
There are as many ways to meditate as there are people in the world. If your intention is clear, it is literally impossible to do it wrong. We all have unique personalities and will connect to meditation practices differently.
The important thing, is to keep exploring until you find one that works for you...but how will you know when that is?
Here are four indications your meditation technique is in alignment for you:
1. While you are practicing, your body relaxes and feels lighter.
2. More often than not, you feel uplifted and inspired after practicing..
3. During your practice you may have a subtle or very obvious inner experience of love, inspiration, clarity, peace or gratitude.
4. At first you may find yourself incredibly excited to practice- this is a great sign! Then a few days or weeks in you might experience some resistance. This is great too! Most often, resistance is an indication that your ego is getting a little worried. Meditation can have the effect for many people of creating an identity shift. One that leans toward the permanent, intangible nature of who we are, and away from the labels, or temporary identities that we or others have given us. Our ego doesn’t know much about our intangible nature and identifies completely with the roles we have taken on. So when we begin to shift our awareness from one way of recognizing ourselves to another, our ego often freaks out! And the way this can show up, is as resistance. So keep going with your practice.
….and yes, I hear the inevitable question: how will you know if resistance is really a sign that you should stop?
Here is what I recommend- If you are experiencing resistance today, meditate anyway. And in those few moments after your practice, tune into that quiet space inside and ask yourself if your meditation practice is serving you. Listen inside. Be still. And then truly honor (to the best of your ability!) whatever information comes forward.
If it’s time to explore a new practice, there are some great ideas on the Ultimate Yogi website, or check back here soon for an article exploring different meditation techniques.
And one more thing – we are constantly bombarded with images of people sitting in meditation and looking really peaceful. Don’t let them fool you – there is a battle raging within. A battle you will only experience once you are experiencing it. It is a worthy battle though and one that will make every other part of your life less of one.
Is Meditation Right for Me? Posted by Aila Coats, M.A.