Would you say being part of a community is important?
In this post, I want to talk about the fact that being part of a community (in my opinion) is crucial for your personal meditation practice and why I started a local mindfulness meetup in Los Angeles.
When I first took up meditation to relieve stress, I didn’t realize how the simple act of sitting still for a few minutes a day can be such a hard habit to develop.
You’re just sitting and breathing! How hard can it be? What is wrong with me?
Well, turns out there was nothing wrong with me. Like any lifelong habit, it takes time and patience to develop.
While the idea of sitting still and breathing evenly sounds easy enough, if it’s not a practice you’ve — well, practiced regularly — it is indeed difficult to start and tougher to become consistent.
So how does one begin AND keep up a regular meditation practice? Here are 5 things I did to ensure I took up the practice and stuck with it:
1. Same Time
Choose the same time each day to practice. Morning before anyone else wakes up, or at night before bedtime are good choices.
2. Same Place
Make sure you sit in the same spot (in your living room, bedroom, patio, etc).
Wear loose, comfortable clothing. You don’t want to cut off any circulation or be too cold or too warm. Also choose a chair or a meditation cushion that allows you to sit comfortably in the same position for at least 15-20 minutes at a time.
4. Guided Meditation
A little instruction can go a long way to ensure you are using the correct posture and focus. You can find a meditation coach to help you, or you can download Freedom Agent Adam’s guided meditation here:
One of the fastest ways to start a habit is if you had friends doing the same. Like a running club or a knitting club, you’re more likely to do it regularly if you have people spurring you on.
And #5 is exactly why I partnered up with my friend, Michael Stroud of Insight LA, to bring sitting groups and mindfulness classes to our area. A daily private practice is great, but a regular (preferably weekly) practice with a small community enhances your practice and encourages you to keep going.
If you’re in the Los Angeles area, specifically the Westside, join us some time! We’d love to practice with you!
Quote From Dana
“At times our own light goes out and is rekindled by a spark from another person. Each of us has cause to think with deep gratitude of those who have lighted the flame within us.”
– Albert Schweitzer
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