For the whole month of February I have decided to dedicate my posts to self love. Therefore, I will be starting a series running through all of February called #SelfLoveSunday. February is often known as the month of love, so what better time than to focus on SELF love. Although it is nice to receive love from others, we should not need love from other people to feel verified and important. Therefore, I want the focus for this month to be on YOU and your continuous journey with self love, self acceptance, and self confidence.
Today I will be focusing the topic on meditation and will also be mentioning my all time favorite *free* meditation app. But, before we jump in be sure to follow my Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest to get more updates from me on my day to day life.
Why and How to Meditate
Meditation is a very important practice in my life. It helps me to feel grounded and to stay routed in the present moment. In today’s fast paced world, I think that we ALL need mediation more than ever before. People rarely take the time anymore to sit and just think for more than 30 seconds. We constantly have 20 things on the go, and so I think that as a community if we all took the time to take on some form of mediation, society would be a better place. Now, I know I am making some big claims here, but I truly believe that mediation can help us as a human race. That is why I continue to advocate for its importance.
Many people believe that mediation requires you to sit in a cross legged position, and chant while sitting in front of a Buddha statue. But, in reality meditation comes in many shapes and forms. Meditation can be found through movement, through music, through voice, through reading, and of course, through stillness. For myself, I know that meditation is mostly found through stillness, movement, and music.
I find mediation every morning as I sit and find stillness for 5 – 10 minutes. This may be through a guided mediation, or through solo mediation practice. But, none the less, I find that taking stock and really focusing on my breath and myself for 5 – 10 minutes at the beginning of the day starts my day off on the right foot. I also like to combine my morning practices with my mantras. Every year, I pick three words for the year and with that comes mantras. I repeat these mantras every day after my meditation to help solidify these goals that I have for myself. I wrote a whole post about how to find your word of the year and mantras earlier in January, check it out here.
I also meditate by moving, and specifically by doing yoga. Yoga allows you to marry movement and the breath in a way that I find no other exercise can. By focusing on the breath and the movement it allows you to stay in the present moment. This allows you to rid your mind of any negative or toxic thoughts, and to spiral back to the present moment.
Lastly, I find meditation through music. I have been a singer my whole life, and although I do not perform anymore, I still do find peace in singing. When I am singing I am focusing only on the act of singing. I am focusing on my breathing, on the background music, on hitting all the notes and cues, that there is no time to think about anything else. For that reason, I believe that singing and music have become a form of mediation for me.
Now, I really want to remind people here, meditation is NOT EASY. Meditation takes practice, and meditation takes time. You are literally training your brain to think in new ways and to let go of thought, so it will obviously take time and work to achieve that. But, this does not mean that it is not worth while. Take time to practice mediation and trust me, it will change your life.
Start today, do it for 7 days and I PROMISE YOU, you will see a shift in your life.
The Best Free Mediation App On The Market
When it comes to meditation apps, I have tried them ALL. I used to use the Calm app for a long time. But, since the end of 2018, they have literally removed all of the free features from their app except for two. So, this app was just not cutting it for me anymore. I have also tried the Head Space app and I personally did not like the format, and I found that there was not enough content on the app overall. Along the way, I have also tried some smaller meditation apps, but I continued to run into the same issues – not enough free content.
Until I found Simple Habit. Simple Habit has dozens of free practices and the layout of the app is phenomenal. It allows you to pick a meditation based on your mood, time of day, and duration. It also has many 7 day or 31 day series, that are completely FREE. There is so much good stuff on this app, that I am considering paying a subscription service fee because I think that the level and quality of free content is incredible.
There is also many different teachers on this app, so if you don’t enjoy someones voice you aren’t stuck with it for all the meditations. Many of the teachers have doctorates in psychology and sciences, which makes me feel comfortable that I am receiving guidance from people with real knowledge.
Below you can see the format of the app and all of it’s features. I personally love this app, and I think that this app has something to offer for people of all levels. Whether you are a beginner to meditation or a veteran, you will find something that will help you on Simple Habit.
Find peace and calm this week!