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Meditation: The Good The Bad and The Ugly
Meditation: The Good The Bad and The Ugly

If you feel this way then you’re not alone. It's hard to start and sometimes hard to keep up with meditating, but I promise you it’s an investment that pays dividends quickly. In fact, there is evidence that meditation can actually prevent and assist in curing some disease. Doctor Herbert Benson of Harvard conducted extensive research on this in the 1950’s, which led to the formation of the Mind/Body Medical Institute. This organization is now part of Massachusetts General Hospital and their research on meditation - coined the “Relaxation Response” -  is still going on today.


So what does meditation really do? It forces us to face ourselves, to look in the mirror at the people we are and begin making small changes towards becoming the people we want to be. Although this may sound far fetched, it’s actually quite simple. Spending time with ourselves is like spending time with a friend. As we get to know ourselves better, we make better decisions and second guess ourselves less. Meditation clears the mind and when the mind is clear, there’s no need to go over the grocery list fifteen times - once or twice is enough. Meditation also gives us a chance to step back from our daily life and look upon the universe from an objective point of view. As the mind clears, and we begin to make better decisions, our life turns in the direction that we want it to.


And how do I meditate? There are many approaches to meditation but here are some tips to get you started.

  1. Find a quiet place where you won’t be disturbed and take a steady, comfortable, upright seat, either crosslegged or on a chair.  
  2. Close your eyes and focus on something repetitive such as your breath or a mantra. A mantra is a meaningful phrase believed to have some psychological or spiritual power. If you can’t think of something meaningful to you, “I surrender to the universe” is a good one.
  3. Set a timer if you’re concerned about time.  


I challenge you to just try to sit with yourself for 5 minutes per day. Don’t worry if thoughts keep coming up. Just acknowledge them and try to not to engage them. Don’t judge yourself if your mind won’t stop racing, just try again tomorrow. Check in after a week and see if you feel a little different.  

 

By Josh Croes

I am a Yoga Alliance certified RYT-200 yoga teacher.  Having trained at ISHTA Yoga, I incorporate concepts of Hatha yoga as well as Ayurveda and Tantric philosophy to help individuals find their own path of transformation.  I teach a strong breath-based Vinyasa flow class, focusing on alignment and body awareness. Visit Josh at JoshCroesYoga and Just Train in NYC

If you want to learn more about meditation, come check out my yoga class on Thursday evenings at 6:30pm at Just Train in NYC. I offer a physically demanding class with focus on breath, alignment and body awareness that sets the tone for a closing meditation. 


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