Awareness, focus and calm are essential whether you are a competitive athlete or someone trying to heal from injuries. I often have my patients meditate so they have more control over their health issues and can address them more effectively.
Very hard to do all the right things to take care of your physical health when the mind isn’t working at the optimal level. It’s really hard for people to sit still or settle their monkey mind. Telling someone to sit quietly and bring their thoughts under control is very difficult for someone who is stressed, in pain or just all over the place mentally.
This a step by step meditation/relaxation practice which has been really helpful for my patients who just can’t be still and meditate. The practice is designed to guide you from gross activities to the subtle… like physical movements such as yoga, tai chi, gentle stretching or a warm up routine to a relaxed focused state.
1. Massage your whole body with sesame, almond or herbal oil
2. Take a warm bath or shower
3. Light 25 min long incense as a timer (can skip this if you are allergic to incense smells)
- 5 mins of Sun Salutation (series of poses, can check it out on the web, avoid if bothers your back or neck. Or modify the poses – to your tolerance)
- 5 mins of Pranayama – Anulom Vilom or Alternate Nostril Breathing helps you balance the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous system.
- 5 mins of chanting of “seed syllables” to calm and focus the mind (eg: Du Lu Du Lu, Shi Li Nan, Jr Li Jr Li, Nan Wadza La, Hung Pan Ja – Tibetan mantra for good health). Or can pick something that you like. Chanting the mantra helps you focus the mind, since your attention is focused at repeating the words.
- 5 mins of Slow deep breathing, observe the air going in and coming out (builds focused awareness, concentration, passive-choiceless awareness, called Shamatha meditation in Sanskrit)
- 5 mins of Contemplating (contemplative wisdom – Vipassana in Sanskrit) the qualities or attributes of your problem/symptoms. Meditate only on 1 attribute per meditation session.
As you get better you can choose to skip steps and go right to sitting in meditation.
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