Committing to do some kind of relaxation and mindfulness practice each day has so many benefits for your physical and mental health. It can also significantly help reduce chronic pain.
Here are my favourite easy meditation options from which you might like to choose:
Focus on the breath. Just sit comfortably with the spine and neck aligned and straight as possible. Preferably close your eyes and just focus on your breathing. No judgement, just observe your breath softly moving in and out. Observe the silence between the breaths. If your mind wanders, no stress, just gently bring it back to focusing on your breath and feel your shoulders, head and jaw relax.
Use a mantra. You may prefer a simple mantra, word or phrase to focus your busy mind. You could use “Om” as your mantra, which has a beautiful low vibrational tone and a long history in Hinduism, Buddhism, meditation and yoga. You could also use a word important to you such as “peace” or “love” or a simple phrase like “just be”. Breathing deeply, either vocalise your word or visualise and hear it in your mind.
Body relaxation. Can be done lying down or seated (I prefer to do this lying in bed before sleeping). Close your eyes, take a deep breath and focus and feel your feet. Be aware of the muscles, tendons and ligaments relaxing and softening. Move slowly up the body, gently focusing on each area and feeling it release and relax. Finish with the muscles in the face and around the eyes letting go and then your scalp muscles releasing. Breathe deeply and relax.
Positive visualisation. Get yourself into a comfortable position, close your eyes and take a deep breath. Think about your favourite place to be – your own slice of heaven or your private peaceful place. It might be somewhere you’ve been in the past or somewhere you would like to go. Imagine it in as much detail as you can and feel yourself there. See yourself as your ideal, perfect self – pain free, moving easily with energy and joy. You are happy, relaxed and grateful for all the blessings in your life. Relax your body, keep breathing deeply and visualise yourself in your perfect place. Really feel yourself there and engage the senses. Can you feel the sunshine? How vibrant are the colours? What can you hear and how does it smell? Smile and imagine yourself enjoying the activities that you do there freely and easily. If you wish, you can even visualise your perfect self, resting and meditating in your peaceful place.
Anchor visualisation. If your mind seems so busy and full and it’s hard to focus on only your breath, you might like to use an anchor, an image that gives you strength and stability. For example, you might visualise yourself sitting at the base of a massive tree, strongly rooted into the ground with a huge trunk reaching up into a beautiful blue sky. Or you may see yourself standing and hugging a tree which remains strong even when things are frantic and swirling around.
Try one or more of these out and start a consistent practice. You will be amazed at the results. I would love to hear how you go!