So you’ve become convinced of the practical, proven benefits of meditation– great! Now where to start? There are a few things that may help you establish your own regular meditation habit. You could wander off into the woods and simply sit in silence, but a little guidance and the right gear are better for setting you on the right track.
The list below includes gear both novice and experienced meditators.
The Gear Guide
1. A good meditation app. Calm and Headspace both offer levels of guided meditations, and can be used to track your meditation practice. The basic versions of both these apps are free, and can integrate with iPhone’s Health app.
2. Consider a course of guided meditations from some of the best teachers. Jon Kabat-Zinn and Joseph Goldstein are legends in the field and present mindfulness in an accessible style. Their courses lay a solid foundation while still presenting the opportunity for experienced meditators to discover greater depth in their teachings.
3. A bit of tech to help raise your awareness. Devices like Muse, Spire, and Leaf track activity as they relate to stress or concentration. Muse is a headband designed to detect electrical signals from your brain and provide audio feedback on your concentration. Spire and Leaf work by monitoring stress indicators in the body (e.g. heart rate) to determine your level of relaxation. Spire and Leaf also can be used to track daily activity – like the number of steps walked.
4. Something to sit on. Meditation can be done in any chair (or even standing up), but a familiar position or routine can help. Consider using some form of meditation bench or cushion. There are several popular options. Meditation benches and cushions provide support for extended periods of sitting. Newer, more ergonomically designed seats, like the Alexia Meditation Seat get great reviews too. These can be especially helpful in the beginning of your practice when physical discomfort may pose a greater distraction.
5. Get others involved. Mindful games can be a fun way to practice mindfulness while joining with others. This collection of games was developed for children and teens, but adults find them valuable too. Meditation courses like this one from zivaMIND allow you to connect with others online or in a traditional classroom setting.
Looking for books or other meditation resources? See the full list of gear and resources at Gnostonic Recommends