The pressures of day-to-day living can get overwhelming at times. Try our best practices for practicing mindful meditation at home.
There’s no way around hardships or stress, but there are things to help you through it. Even if it seems impossible to fit mindful meditation at home into your schedule, try to reconsider how you spend your time.
According to one Harvard study, “an eight-week meditation training program can have measurable effects on how the brain functions even when someone is not actively meditating…supporting the hypothesis that meditation can improve emotional stability and the brain’s response to stress.” Here are a few ways you can create a space for effective mindful meditation at home.
Study participants who completed an eight-week meditation training course had reduced activity in the right amygdala (highlighted structure) in response to emotional images, even when not meditating.
1. Choose an area
The first step to starting a meditation routine is to designate a space in your home for all of those activities. While it’s okay to test out a few spots, you’ll save yourself time and energy by committing to one area. It can be an entire room or the corner of your bedroom—try to make the most of the space you have.
2. Remove distractions and declutter
Distracting noises and clutter can hinder your ability to practice successful meditation. You’ll want to deep clean this space as much as you can. If you have a dishwasher or washer machine that rattles or makes loud noises, schedule repairs or choose an area in your home that won’t be affected by noise. If you live in a busy city, you may want to consider using earplugs or white noise machines and headphones during your practice.
3. Bring in elements from nature
If you can bring in natural light or get a new plant, it’s a great way to give the area a peaceful aesthetic. Research also supports the power of plants to filter the air, reduce stress, and support a positive mood and increased attention. Simply creating an environment supports your intentions is a great way to set yourself up for success.
Created by renowned nature photographer Craig Blacklock in collaboration with the Center for Spirituality & Healing, this unique video uses the sounds and sights of a northern Minnesota forest coming to life to help you feel relaxed and connected with nature, even if you can’t get outside.
4. Engage your sense of smell
Not only is a visually pleasing aesthetic helpful, but also thinking about ways to engage your sense of smell during your practice. You can do this by lighting a candle or using an essential oil diffuser. The important element is associating certain smells with certain practices. Over time, your mind will be accustomed to getting into “meditation mode” when surrounded by that familiar scent.
5. Set boundaries for the space
Make your meditation space sacred by setting boundaries for what is and isn’t acceptable while you’re using it. For example, make a rule that you’ll leave your phone in the other room or put it on airplane mode while meditating. If you’re playing music off of your phone, try connecting it to a bluetooth speaker so that you don’t have the temptation to think about the digital world.