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How to Meditate: Meditation 101 for Beginners

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Calming Anxiety

Enjoy this soothing meditation for stress and anxiety, and leave the session feeling refreshed and at ease.

Welcome. Let's start by finding a comfortable position. So you may be seated with your hands comfortably in your lap. Your eyes closed, both alert and relaxed. And if you'd like to, you can feel free to also lie down during this practice.

The theme of this meditation is calming anxiety. So let's begin the meditation by noticing the flow of the breath in and out. Can you begin to follow the breath in, perhaps the belly rises? And follow the breath out. Perhaps the belly falls? Just rising and falling of the breath of the belly. Taking a moment to notice if there is a sense of worry or anxiety or stress right now, which may be why you chose this meditation.

And if so, simply naming inwardly what's present. Oh, I'm feeling anxious or feeling stressed and acknowledging the presence of any activation in your nervous system. That's step one. Okay. Now come back to the breath, flowing in, out.

And begin to lengthen the exhalation. One easy way to do this is to breathe into the count of one. And out to the count of two. Beginning with a breathing practice like this helps us to very quickly downregulate perhaps an activated nervous system. Taking three more breaths where you're lengthening the exhalation.

The inhale comes naturally. As you breathe, notice is there any tension or holding in your body? You may squeeze your fists and then release with the exhale. Now let's do a soothing practice so that we leave this session feeling at ease. We've connected with our breath with any presence of activation in our nervous system, acknowledging it, any anxiety or worry, and now let's do a body and breath scan. And work to calm the anxiety by inviting in this quality of rest, of ease.

I'll name a body part and when I do so simply feel the felt sensation when I name that body part, whatever's there. There's no correct way to do this. So let's try it out together. Sensing your jaw, mouth. Notice, if there's any tension or holding.

And you begin to release any tension as I name body parts. Sensing your ears. Flow of the breath in and out of your nose or mouth. Sensing your eyes. Notice if there's any tension or holding in or around your eyes.

If you notice any, can you begin to release the tension simply through the noticing. There's no need to force relaxation. We're simply feeling felt sensations in the body. Sense now, just behind your eyes, take an inhale and then exhale all the way back through the midline of the brain to the back of the head. Allowing attention to drop from the back of the head, down to the back of the neck.

Again here, noticing any tension. When you do, any holding or muscular tension, can you allow your body to begin to gently release the holding? It may be holding unnecessarily as a result of an activated nervous system. So we're simply allowing this invitation of our body to relax and release tension. Bringing attention now to your left shoulder. Take an inhale.

Exhale all the way down your left arm into the palm of the left hand. All of your attention is absorbed in your left arm and hand as you breathe in, breathe out. There may be thoughts coming and going and feelings. That's okay, but allow your attention to rest. Arm, hand, perhaps squeezing your left fist and releasing.

Okay. Now bringing attention to your right shoulder. Take an inhale. Exhale all the way down your right arm to the palm of your right hand. Breathing in and out.

You may squeeze and release the palm of your right hand. Allowing all of your attention to be absorbed in your right arm, right hand. Now let's do both simultaneously. Inhale, both shoulders. Exhale, both arms, both hands.

So you breathe in and out. Perhaps you may close your fist and then release. Notice what you feel in your whole body as we're a few minutes into the meditation. Noticing all the sensation inside your torso, your chest, your belly, your back. Here too, are there any pockets of tension you can feel into and then release? Be with the breath.

Feeling into a particular place of tension in your torso. Breathing in. And then with the exhale release worry, release the stress or anxiety. No need to hold this in your body in this moment. Bringing attention now to your left hip.

Inhale. And exhale, sense your whole left leg and foot. So now as you breathe in and out, all of your attention is absorbed entirely in your left leg, your left foot. A thought may come, but can you gently reorient attention back to your body? Simply feeling the felt sense. What do you come upon? What's here? It may be numbness.

It may be tingling. Or you may simply visualize your left leg and foot. However you do it is fine. Bringing attention now to your right hip. Inhale.

Exhale your whole right leg, right foot. Attention absorbed in your right leg and foot as you breathe in and out. Noticing what you come upon. Bringing attention to both hips. Inhale.

And then exhale, both legs, both feet, simultaneously. Feeling the quality of sensation in your legs and feet as you breathe in, breathe out. Feeling now your entire body globally. So your legs and feet, arms and hands, torso, head, neck, face, whole body breathing in, breathing out. So you may picture your body or visualize it.

And then can you let go of the picture and simply feel the felt sense of being here? Thoughts coming and going, any emotions or feeling tones are welcome to be here. But our focus is on our breathing and body sensation. As you feel your whole body, notice is there any place of tension that wants to be released? So do a scan. Again with your breath, with the exhale, releasing any tension that's here. And now welcome in the felt sense of ease, of wellbeing.

Acknowledging inwardly, in this moment all is well. Can you feel your body, your mind begin to relax and be at ease. We're inviting our nervous system to relax, our mind, to relax. Not forcing, but this is an invitation toward the felt sense of peace, wellbeing, and ease. What do you find when you invite these feelings in? Perhaps a relaxed shoulders, open belly? Your jaw is relaxed.

Can you allow this feeling, if it's here, of ease and wellbeing to saturate your whole body? Notice as you do this, perhaps your mind comes along and, and rests or relaxes. But perhaps it doesn't, no worries. Simply being with what's here as it is, acknowledging any remnants of worry, but also feeling grounded and a quality of ease, peace, wellbeing in your body and your mind. Okay. We'll close here.

So begin to reorient your attention to the room. And thank you for your practice.

Meditation

4.4

Calming Anxiety

Enjoy this soothing meditation for stress and anxiety, and leave the session feeling refreshed and at ease.

Duration

Your default time is based on your progress and is changed automatically as you practice.

Welcome. Let's start by finding a comfortable position. So you may be seated with your hands comfortably in your lap. Your eyes closed, both alert and relaxed. And if you'd like to, you can feel free to also lie down during this practice.

The theme of this meditation is calming anxiety. So let's begin the meditation by noticing the flow of the breath in and out. Can you begin to follow the breath in, perhaps the belly rises? And follow the breath out. Perhaps the belly falls? Just rising and falling of the breath of the belly. Taking a moment to notice if there is a sense of worry or anxiety or stress right now, which may be why you chose this meditation.

And if so, simply naming inwardly what's present. Oh, I'm feeling anxious or feeling stressed and acknowledging the presence of any activation in your nervous system. That's step one. Okay. Now come back to the breath, flowing in, out.

And begin to lengthen the exhalation. One easy way to do this is to breathe into the count of one. And out to the count of two. Beginning with a breathing practice like this helps us to very quickly downregulate perhaps an activated nervous system. Taking three more breaths where you're lengthening the exhalation.

The inhale comes naturally. As you breathe, notice is there any tension or holding in your body? You may squeeze your fists and then release with the exhale. Now let's do a soothing practice so that we leave this session feeling at ease. We've connected with our breath with any presence of activation in our nervous system, acknowledging it, any anxiety or worry, and now let's do a body and breath scan. And work to calm the anxiety by inviting in this quality of rest, of ease.

I'll name a body part and when I do so simply feel the felt sensation when I name that body part, whatever's there. There's no correct way to do this. So let's try it out together. Sensing your jaw, mouth. Notice, if there's any tension or holding.

And you begin to release any tension as I name body parts. Sensing your ears. Flow of the breath in and out of your nose or mouth. Sensing your eyes. Notice if there's any tension or holding in or around your eyes.

If you notice any, can you begin to release the tension simply through the noticing. There's no need to force relaxation. We're simply feeling felt sensations in the body. Sense now, just behind your eyes, take an inhale and then exhale all the way back through the midline of the brain to the back of the head. Allowing attention to drop from the back of the head, down to the back of the neck.

Again here, noticing any tension. When you do, any holding or muscular tension, can you allow your body to begin to gently release the holding? It may be holding unnecessarily as a result of an activated nervous system. So we're simply allowing this invitation of our body to relax and release tension. Bringing attention now to your left shoulder. Take an inhale.

Exhale all the way down your left arm into the palm of the left hand. All of your attention is absorbed in your left arm and hand as you breathe in, breathe out. There may be thoughts coming and going and feelings. That's okay, but allow your attention to rest. Arm, hand, perhaps squeezing your left fist and releasing.

Okay. Now bringing attention to your right shoulder. Take an inhale. Exhale all the way down your right arm to the palm of your right hand. Breathing in and out.

You may squeeze and release the palm of your right hand. Allowing all of your attention to be absorbed in your right arm, right hand. Now let's do both simultaneously. Inhale, both shoulders. Exhale, both arms, both hands.

So you breathe in and out. Perhaps you may close your fist and then release. Notice what you feel in your whole body as we're a few minutes into the meditation. Noticing all the sensation inside your torso, your chest, your belly, your back. Here too, are there any pockets of tension you can feel into and then release? Be with the breath.

Feeling into a particular place of tension in your torso. Breathing in. And then with the exhale release worry, release the stress or anxiety. No need to hold this in your body in this moment. Bringing attention now to your left hip.

Inhale. And exhale, sense your whole left leg and foot. So now as you breathe in and out, all of your attention is absorbed entirely in your left leg, your left foot. A thought may come, but can you gently reorient attention back to your body? Simply feeling the felt sense. What do you come upon? What's here? It may be numbness.

It may be tingling. Or you may simply visualize your left leg and foot. However you do it is fine. Bringing attention now to your right hip. Inhale.

Exhale your whole right leg, right foot. Attention absorbed in your right leg and foot as you breathe in and out. Noticing what you come upon. Bringing attention to both hips. Inhale.

And then exhale, both legs, both feet, simultaneously. Feeling the quality of sensation in your legs and feet as you breathe in, breathe out. Feeling now your entire body globally. So your legs and feet, arms and hands, torso, head, neck, face, whole body breathing in, breathing out. So you may picture your body or visualize it.

And then can you let go of the picture and simply feel the felt sense of being here? Thoughts coming and going, any emotions or feeling tones are welcome to be here. But our focus is on our breathing and body sensation. As you feel your whole body, notice is there any place of tension that wants to be released? So do a scan. Again with your breath, with the exhale, releasing any tension that's here. And now welcome in the felt sense of ease, of wellbeing.

Acknowledging inwardly, in this moment all is well. Can you feel your body, your mind begin to relax and be at ease. We're inviting our nervous system to relax, our mind, to relax. Not forcing, but this is an invitation toward the felt sense of peace, wellbeing, and ease. What do you find when you invite these feelings in? Perhaps a relaxed shoulders, open belly? Your jaw is relaxed.

Can you allow this feeling, if it's here, of ease and wellbeing to saturate your whole body? Notice as you do this, perhaps your mind comes along and, and rests or relaxes. But perhaps it doesn't, no worries. Simply being with what's here as it is, acknowledging any remnants of worry, but also feeling grounded and a quality of ease, peace, wellbeing in your body and your mind. Okay. We'll close here.

So begin to reorient your attention to the room. And thank you for your practice.

Meditation

4.4

Duration

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