It’s strange how many people think that meditation and relaxation are synonymous. Although you can use both disciplines to achieve a heightened sense of calmness, there are clear differences between the two.
Meditation techniques often offer deep relaxation to individuals suffering from physical, mental or emotional stress. Individuals who meditate usually report improved health and wellbeing, reduced anxiety, more satisfaction in life and greater happiness. These desirable responses are not experienced by individuals who simply try relaxation.
On the other hand, relaxation simply means to unwind, loosen up and slacken off from normal activity. People mainly perform relaxation so they can release the stress that has built up over several days. Although relaxation allows you to forget stressful issues, your different trails of thought still flow unrestricted. Your mind remains active and your thought process is constantly engaged. Unlike relaxation, meditation allows your thought process to be gradually calmed and understood, in a way transcended, so you can achieve a deep sense of clarity.
Body relaxation meditation techniques
Relaxation is just one of the pleasant side-effects of meditation. During meditation, an individual picks an object that they can focus on (breathe is the most popular). It’s important to avoid distractions during your meditation so as to reap optimum benefits. Here are some factors to consider before embarking on your muscle relaxation meditation journey:
- Your location
Before you start any relaxation meditation technique, choose a place that’s devoid of too much light and noise. Your location should ideally be a darkened room. Too much light hampers the process. Try switching off the room lights for some few minutes as you meditate. You could also light a candle if you prefer. If you desire a change in scenery, incorporate some walking meditation to your regimen. This will activate your senses and offer you some change of routine.
- Your sitting position
It is not necessary to sit in the lotus position (with legs crisscrossed), rather it’s recommended that you sit in the posture you feel most comfortable. If you tire quickly after sitting flat on a mat, try a cushion instead. You can even start with a comfy sofa and work your way up (or in this case, down). The manner in which you sit affects the quality of your meditation – it’s hard to concentrate for more five minutes when your limbs are aching. You can also incorporate different yoga poses into your regimen to keep your body flexible.
The time of day
Some people prefer performing their body relaxation meditation exercises in the morning while others prefer in the evening. However, it’s important to pick a time when your mind is alert. There should be as few distractions as possible during this time. Morning is the best time to perform meditation. Apart from time, the length of your meditation session is also paramount. Gauge your concentration span before committing to a certain timespan.
Guided meditation relaxation
If you’re just starting to meditate or you need some help progressing to higher stages, guided meditation can definitely help. There are numerous meditation apps you can choose from – some are online-based while others are downloadable on your smart device. The only challenge is choosing a holistic app that offers you the best daily guided meditations. The Mindworks Meditation App is highly recommended this app not only contains valuable mind talks but also has all the crucial resources you require, whether you’re a beginner or a pro. Guided meditation will help take your muscle relaxation meditation techniques a notch higher.
The notion that meditation and relaxation are similar is nothing short of a façade. Relaxation is a single health by-product of meditation. According to Maria Camara, a renowned meditation teacher, this sacred art can even be used to help people deal with stress, grief and loss. Life gives each individual a plethora of opportunities and experiences. How we react to them determines our future.