This post is about helping beginners stay focussed using a simple breathing technique.
If you’re anything like me, when I started to meditate, I found it very difficult to stay focussed.
I was trying really hard to concentrate on my breath, but my mind kept drifting off on it’s own. Sometimes it could be a couple of minutes before I realised and brought my concentration back again.
After trying lots of different techniques, including dozens of different guided meditations, I finally found something that worked for me. Hopefully, it can do the same for you.
Feel free to change anything, what’s important is that it works for you. Give it a try and mix it up if you have to. Whatever works 🙂
Firstly, get yourself comfortable and relax. Keep your back straight, shoulders loose and relaxed and place your hands where they’re comfortable. Most people either place them in their lap, one on top of the other, or on their knees. Whatever is comfortable for you.
Next, close your eyes, or look gently downward in front of you to reduce any visual distractions.
Now, take one deep breath in through the nose. Fill your lungs right up, then slowly exhale through the mouth.
Next, slowly inhale through the nose, counting ‘one’ on the first breath. feel your lungs and abdomen filling with air. then pause for a moment, then slowly exhale.
Continue doing this, while counting the breaths, up to 10.
If you find this works, you can either stop there and move on to the next part, or start again at one and do this as many times as you need.
If it’s easier for you, you can count each breath off on your fingers. Just be mindful about doing it. ie:you can continue to breathe normally while you make yourself aware of the subtle movement of each finger as you move it into position. feel the texture of the skin and the pressure of your touch as you move the finger to touch the thumb, etc.
Then, once you’ve got that working for you, you can try dropping the count all together and during each breath, picture in your minds-eye the breath entering through the nose, going through the trachea (windpipe) down into the lungs, filling all the small alveoli (air sacs). And as you’re imagining the air moving in, think the word ‘relax’, or ‘calm’, etc.
Then, on the exhale, picture the air coming back out again, bringing all your stress and tension with it.
Repeat this 10 times, or more if it helps you.
Using these techniques worked for me. After using them few a few days, it was much easier for me to focus. Remember though, that it will be impossible to stay completely focussed throughout the meditation.
Even meditation masters lose focus at times, that’s just how the human brain works. But this technique helps to control your focus. And it becomes easier to notice when you’ve drifted off into an alternate universe, helping you to realize much sooner.
Give it a try and let me know how you found it, using the comments box below. Also, if you’ve got any tricks, or tips to share drop those in the comments as well 🙂