One of the most common meditation techniques is “Anapanasati.” In other words: “The Breathing Meditation.” Practicing “Anapanasati” is not that difficult.
If you have practiced a lot on becoming present, “Anapanasati” is the next step you can take to go just a step deeper in your meditation practice. “Anapanasati” is when you breathe consciously. Now let me explain how you can practice “Anapanasati” successfully. I advise practicing breathing exercises in a sitting or lying position in case of dizziness or losing consciousness.
- Close your eyes and focus inside you.
- Breathe slowly and relax. It is recommended to breathe in through your nose. You can breathe out through your nose or your mouth. It is up to you.
- Breathe in normally. Don’t try to force your inhalation. Let it happen naturally.
- Breathe out slowly. Use long exhalations. Again. Let it happen naturally. Don’t think about breathing correctly.
- Now, focus on your breathing. Don’t try to guide your breathing. Just observe it. Don’t judge it. Observe what happens to your body while breathing.
- Stay focused on what your body does while breathing in and out.
- Keep breathing consciously in and out for a couple of minutes.
During the whole process, you need to stay focused on your breathing. If your mind drifts now and then, return your concentration to your breathing. Don’t get upset. It is natural.
As long as you observe your breathing, try to feel everything that happens in your body. For example: Notice how the air flows in and out of your body. Feel the route from your mouth to your throat, lungs, belly, and genitals. Try to feel how your muscles contract in every breath.
Some people say that it is helpful to count your breaths. Counting your breaths creates stress during the whole procedure. If you are an advanced meditator, it is a great exercise to train your mind to stay focused. Still, if you are a beginner, there are better ideas than adding stressful techniques to your first meditation experience. I recommend not doing this until you can stay focused whenever you want. You can breathe in and out and consciously observe your breathing and your body’s reaction. It is enough to help you stay focused and in tune with your body.
Practicing “Anapanasati” is a great way to connect with your body. We discussed the simplest version of “Anapanasati” offered to you to help you connect with your body. Of course, more advanced versions of “Anapanasati” exist to practice. There are also many more advanced techniques in the I.M. Meditation method that offers you plenty of benefits, but you need to start with the easy stuff first.
Breathing exercises can offer plenty of benefits, including stress relief, relaxation, energy management, and many more. We will talk about these techniques in other articles. Until then, do this simple version of “Anapanasati” for a few minutes daily. It will help you connect with your body.
Fotis Tampas (De Tao).