Just as life has promised us, a distressing situation occurs, and we begin to feel panicked, out of control, and unbalanced. No matter the circumstance, meditation can help you stay focused and grounded, without regard to life’s unpredictability. In the recovery world, mind, body, and spirituality are all connected; when one of these aspects is off-kilter, it affects the rest and that’s when a world of chaos crumbles around us. Meditation is considered one of the best ways to relax the mind and body, giving us the ability to achieve a peaceful moment no matter what. If you’ve never practiced meditation before, have some patience; start off small, for about 5 minutes each night and work your way up to about 20 or 25 minutes.
There are many types of meditative practices, but these are a few that you can start with to begin your journey of grounding and connection:
- Focused attention meditation – choose a single object to focus on, such as the breath, a mantra, a part of the body, an object in your surroundings, etc. Sit in a comfortable position with your feet on the ground or cross-legged, and as you breathe in and out, focus gently on that one object.
- Open monitoring meditation – rather than focusing on one object, monitor all aspects of the current moment; take in all internal experiences such as thoughts, feelings, memories, etc. and external perceptions such as touch, smells, sounds, etc. Recognize and see all of these aspects for what they are, and how they contribute to your current moment.
- Mindfulness meditation – intently focus on the present moment without judgment but rather with acceptance; as you are seated comfortably, gently focus on your attention on your breathing while your eyes are closed. If your mind wanders, again bring your focus back to the breath. Try to allow yourself to become aware of your thoughts, feelings, etc. rather than become engulfed in them.
- Loving kindness meditation – with your eyes closed and in a seated position, begin by giving yourself love and kindness. Say things to yourself that are filled with compassion and sincerity; from there, extend that kindness to a good friend, then to a “neutral” person, then to a difficult person. Move on to extend kindness to all of the above, and then to the entire universe.
Continue practicing different forms of meditation to see what feels best for you. As you continue to practice, you’ll notice your ability to become more grounded in daily life.
Therapy is a primary component of treatment for rehabilitation from a substance use disorder and/or mental health disorder. Attending treatment with certified clinicians and counselors is critical for a full recovery. At one of New Vista Behavioral Health’s treatment providers, you are receiving exceptional care, held to a higher standard. Our programs result in better outcomes, ensuring a better recovery. For information call us today: 888-316-3665.