Introduce movement to meditation with these dynamic ways to meditate throughout your day.
Meditation reduces stress, soothes anxiety and helps us cope with addiction triggers. For these reasons, I deeply value it as a cornerstone of recovery. However, the prospect of complete stillness may not appeal to everyone. It may be challenging to find a peaceful environment, especially if you have tots bouncing off the walls. For those of us who prefer movement, I’d like to introduce several ways to meditate through momentum. It may seem counterintuitive, but I believe the body and mind can enjoy much of the same benefits through these dynamic forms of reflection.
You’ll build internal stability and relieve back pain when learn to stand with a strong, pliant posture. Your feet should point forward and be about hip-width apart. Roll your shoulders open to expand the chest and lift your chin. Try to adjust your stance so that an imaginary straight line can be drawn from your ear, shoulder, hip, knee and ankle. A relaxed, neutral pelvis will also relieve tension in the lower back. Not only will a supple, open posture like this boost your confidence, it will alleviate pain so you can focus on recovery.
Walk, Run, or Hike
The steady and deliberate movements of walking, running and hiking do wonders for the body and mind. Focus on the motion of your body, align it with your breath and release tension with each exhale. Relish the scenery all around you. Let the thumping rhythm of your feet both soothe and invigorate you. I recommend you choose a outdoor place where you can take in the healing power of nature.
Tai Chi and Qigong
Quigong and tai chi are both gentle, fluid ways to ease stress. Tai chi is often referred to as the “moving meditation” because it invites practitioners to deepen awareness with wholesome breathing and slow movement. I strongly recommend both as tools for substance abuse recovery. They offer better sleep, stronger limbs, less pain from stiffness and a sense of overall wellness. I encourage you to attend a class or try a video at home if you’re seeking a peaceful, expressive way to reinforce your mind-body health.
If you want to put your own unique, dynamic twist on meditation, try dancing. I often find myself in awe of the healing potential of motion paired with creativity; it can shake free stagnant knots that block energy, blow off the toxic steam of resentment and liberate your mind to explore new perspectives. After all, freedom to unwind and explore are what meditation is all about. If this appeals to you, try weaving the rhythm of dance into your recovery plan.
You may be baffled by how you can meditate while washing dishes, scrubbing toilets, or folding laundry. Personally, I find the repetitive and purifying nature of cleaning to be therapeutic. It’s a literal form of out with the old, in with the new. To get started, focus on one task on the time to develop a mindful flow. Think about what you’re doing, how you feel, and what’s happening around you. Your home is your sanctuary, so tending to it is an act of meditation on its own.
The temptation to use your hands to itch hits most of us during meditation. That’s because scratching activates the brain’s compulsive behavior and pain control areas. Rather than avoid meditation because you can’t sit completely still, though, I encourage you to try hand movement meditation. As we are creatures of action, the tangible and nurturing motion of our hands can create a sense of purpose and progress. These hand movements can extend to yoga and normal daily activities.
Any activity that centers your thoughts and relaxes your body can be used as meditation, and that’s good news for everyone who loves to read. You can explore new worlds, delve into the bountiful resources on recovery and enjoy lifelong learning. No matter how riveting the pages are, make sure to maintain good posture, breathe steadily and take occasional walking breaks to loosen up.
I firmly believe in meditation’s benefits for recovery and mental health. By introducing these techniques, I am seeking to appeal this resource to a wider audience. Enjoy the focus, centering, and calm you gain from meditation when you try a dynamic method.
Learning Ways to Meditate at Morningside Recovery
Morningside Recovery offers many alternative addiction therapy services to help people of all backgrounds. Whether you prefer evidence based therapy or experiential therapy, we have programs for everyone. To learn more about our programs and ways to meditate, call us today at 855-631-2135.