Few tools are as valuable to master our emotions as a meditation practice.
And yet so many consider it as not ‘their cup of tea’ and resent the seemingly sudden explosion of meditation and mindfulness practices everywhere. I too resisted the notion that all answers to your inner world seem to start with ‘try meditation’.
But even I had to open my mind a bit when my rheumatologist – no less than a department lead – mentioned as something worth having a look at to improve my health.
6 years now and while I still prefer mindfulness practices I can do in my everyday life, it is through meditation that I learned them. It taught me to be less hard on myself, be less defensive, and get less triggered. It is through meditation I learned to manage my anxieties and how to actually ‘let go’ instead of harboring my pains as best friends.
To be fair, meditation is not a miracle cure that solves all your emotional and mental issues.
It is simply a good habit that helps you master your emotional pains and behaviors.
As with all habits, it’s not always easy to know where to start. A share number of resources – many free – can be overwhelming.
Bellow is the 5 best meditations for beginners.
If you haven’t tried tapping into your emotions before, this can be a completely new experience – letting emotions flow without self-identifying with them. It also is holistic – it helps you observe your triggers, your thoughts, your bodily sensations and emotions at the same time.
2. Body Scan. BEST FOR – Reading your bodily sensations.
Recognizing bodily sensations is crucial for mastering your emotions because it gives you the choice to interrupt before emotions take over. This meditation enables other techniques useful in highly emotional situations – such as progressive muscle relaxation or grounding.
3. Loving-Kindness (Metta). BEST FOR – letting go of your judgments and expectations for yourself and others.
Loving-kindness is one of the most powerful meditations with its impact proven in a number of research studies so it’s helpful beyond emotional management. For emotions, it helps to manage the suffering that comes from irritations, hurts, and expectations of daily lives. And the sense of connection instead of loneliness is another ‘side effect’!
4. R.A.I.N. BEST FOR – managing highly intense, more persistent, lingering emotions.
R.A.I.N. transformed my life in so many ways that I revised it and now use it as a tool to manage my emotions every day. So much of our day can be ruined by lingering rejections from work, guilt from our relationships, or anxieties about the future. R.A.I.N. is THE tool to make sure you are the master of your emotions and not the emotions being master of you.
5. Mindfulness meditation. BEST FOR – unguided insight meditation you can do yourself.
Clearing your mind, stepping away from your thoughts and feelings, and sensations, in the beginning, are hard enough with guidance. Many drop meditation because they try it on their own with no luck. Others drop because something doesn’t fit – it’s either too much talk or not enough, with music or without music, with the voice you like or the voice that irritates you. So if you were unsuccessful in finding the right guided meditation, read this book – the 4 steps can be easily done on your own!
So grab the Meditation for Emotions Cheat Sheet and begin!Download meditation pdf