When I take on a new client in my practice as a life coach, I usually begin with a strategy of exploring what this individual’s beliefs are about himself and his life. I then find out what the underlying daily thoughts are that support those beliefs. I always discover that whatever is showing up in this person’s life, whether good or bad, is supported and perpetuated by these beliefs, the person’s emotional responses, and the resulting actions they take or do not take each day based on these beliefs.

I have a number of exercises to help clients reveal to themselves some of the beliefs and values they hold that they may not even be aware of. I also utilize some wonderful therapies, such as hypnotherapy and Emotional Freedom Technique, to assist in clearing unproductive or destructive emotional beliefs and thought patterns from the body and mind.

Even with these wonderful techniques available for me to utilize, I must confess that the most important, lasting, and transformational support I can give to my clients is to teach them and encourage them to learn meditation and to practice it daily. Meditation is a beautiful and peaceful journey to the stillness within. When you quiet the mind and enter the silence of your own soul through meditation, you experience a restful vacation from the things that don’t necessarily serve you much of the time.

The constant barrage of worrying, planning, rushing, and fretting that most of us deal with in heavy doses on a daily basis is the very thing that raises our stress levels to a point of compromising our immune function and overwhelming us mentally and emotionally. The societal expectations we have to produce and perform and to be successful at all things can, at times, take us to the breaking point physically, mentally, and emotionally.

Being in a state of meditation allows you to transcend the distractions of thoughts, emotions, and physical pain. Meditation allows you to go beyond into a state of just being. It is in this state of pure being that you access your higher self and connect to a universal flow of knowing and intellect. In this meditative state you begin to experience the infinite possibilities of all that you are. By setting simple intentions before your meditation, you truly can begin to activate those possibilities. As you practice meditation more, the results in your life begin to seem truly miraculous.

It is said that Leonardo da Vinci, William Shakespeare, and Albert Einstein all practiced a type of meditation. These brilliant people and many others discovered, through their practice of quieting the mind, the vehicle to the greatest self and the highest wisdom. This vehicle was not just available to them; it is available to all of us. Following are five simple steps that will get you started in your practice of meditation.

1.Choose a quiet space in which you can regularly meditate. It doesn’t have to be an entire room. You can play soft music or light a candle—whatever gets you in a relaxed mood.
2.Sit comfortably. If you aren’t comfortable sitting on the floor with your legs crossed, sitting in a chair with your feet on the floor is perfectly fine. Sit with a straight spine, your head even and your eyes closed.
3.Begin with three deep, cleansing breaths, breathing all the way down to the base of the spine, breathing in through the nose and out through the mouth. Then begin to breathe normally.
4.Start to let go of all thoughts by focusing on the inflow and outflow of the breath or by repeating, silently, a simple mantra over and over. The mantra could be something like “I am healed,” “I am whole,” or “peace.” When a thought pops into your head, put your attention back on your breath or the mantra. Make sure you don’t focus on the meaning of the mantra because that becomes a thought.
5.Try to practice your meditation regularly. Twice a day is very beneficial—once in the morning and once in the late afternoon or evening. One half hour per session is ideal, but even if you can only work fifteen minutes, each time, into your day, you will still enjoy wonderful benefits.

Meditation is done in a deeply relaxed state, allowing the entire body, and all of its functions, a vacation from stress. When you meditate, it is like taking a cleansing, refreshing plunge into a peaceful, boundless pool of awareness. You emerge cleansed of chaos and invigorated with a clear, pure perspective. The benefits of meditation range from better health, happiness, and awareness to experiencing pure bliss. Let meditation put you in touch with the unlimited potential that is already within you.

May you have great success in your transformation through meditation.

** This article is one of 101 great articles that were published in 101 Great Ways to Improve Your Life. To get complete details on “101 Great Ways to Improve Your Life”, visit http://www.selfgrowth.com/greatways2.html.

Author's Bio: 

Crystal Dwyer is a highly skilled practitioner of transformational life coaching and a board-certified hypnotherapist. She has her own unique program utilizing the powerful tools of hypnotherapy, Emotional Freedom Technique, and meditation. By using these amazing techniques, she is able to assist her clients in overcoming the obstacles that keep them from being their best. With grace and humor she helps people move forward to create more of what they desire out of life. For more information about transforming any area of your life, visit her Web site at http://www.crystaldwyer.com, or contact her at crystalinphx@cox.net or (602) 343–1402.