By Sejal Shah | Posted: November 16, 2018
The season of gratitude and giving is in the air. Although gratitude can be practiced all year long, this season brings many reasons for gratitude From Thanksgiving and Giving Tuesday to Christmas, the season is all about gifting, gratitude, and celebrations.
Gratitude rewards in more than one way
Gratitude actually helps you way more than the person you feel gratitude towards. When you feel thankful and content in your own life and experiences, then you will find that you are already so fortunate, and your desires for more in life diminish. Moreover, studies show that gratitude is very important for our health and well-being.
There are a number of ways to make sure you're giving thanks every day, including writing a gratitude journal and practicing gratitude yoga. Meditation is another great way to cultivate gratitude daily.
What is meditation?
Meditation is a process of bringing the mind to its natural state of peace and joy. Beyond all the noise in our mind, there exists a silent, peaceful, blissful, beautiful space, a place that is intact and complete. Meditation is the delicate and effortless art of doing nothing and allowing this silent space within us to surface. Connecting with this space relaxes the mind and puts us into our natural state of serenity, happiness, love, contentment, clarity, and childlike energy and enthusiasm.
Benefits of meditation
Think of meditation as an iPod that generates the music of ‘Inner Peace and Outer Dynamism’, for being unconditionally happy, ever grateful, energetic and calm.
By connecting you to your true nature, practicing meditation can help you appreciate life more and gain a fresh perspective, reminding you of the positive things in your life and broadening your attention to not just your but everybody’s well-being.
Many recent research studies suggest that meditation’s effects are deep: from stress relief to improving your quality of life, your physical well-being, your emotional health, as well as ameliorating many illnesses and changing your brain.
Meditate as you celebrate Thanksgiving
1. If you are new to meditation, guided meditation is a good way to begin. This guided contentment meditation could be a great start of your Thanksgiving day! When you are contented from within, you will be naturally grateful, and more blessings will shower upon you. With this guided meditation, dissolve and let go all the feelings of discontentment, and be more appreciative.
2. Count your blessings with mindfulness meditation
Mindfulness, the Buddhist technique of meditation, teaches you to remain aware and present at the moment without getting distracted by thoughts about the past or the future.
Mindfulness is an important aspect of the wider scope of meditation, and incorporating a practice into your life can have innumerable benefits like developing gratefulness, objectivity, and tolerance.
Gratitude Meditation: On this Thanksgiving day, find a quiet place, sit with your eyes closed, begin to inhale the essence of gratitude and exhale all limitations keeping you from experiencing gratitude in every area of your life. Breathe in with a smile and breathe out with an even bigger smile. As you continue to breathe and smile, start becoming aware of all your blessings - this body, this very breath and all the blessings that you have received so far and will be receiving in future too. Even see all the difficulties that you faced as blessings and realize how they have made you stronger and wiser. Soften your heart by allowing it to get filled with a deep sense of gratitude and appreciation for everybody, everything and all situations in your life. Continue for a few more minutes, allowing gratitude to percolate in each and every cell of your being. Take a deep breath and relax more. When you feel complete, slowly open your eyes with a big smile.
3. Be in a perpetual state of gratefulness with Sahaj Samadhi meditation
“Sahaj” means effortless, and “Samadhi” means a state of equanimity or bliss. Sahaj Samadhi Meditation, as the name suggests, is an easy, enjoyable and effective meditation technique that is founded by Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar. This ancient meditation uses a specific technique of mantra or sound vibration to help one to go deep into the meditative state to experience profound inner peace and bliss.
Besides being in the everlasting state of gratefulness, commonly reported benefits of Sahaj Samadhi meditation include increased self-awareness, clarity of mind, creativity, better physical energy and health, restful sleep, improved relationships, reduction in anxiety and depression.
Learning this technique could be a perfect gift for you and your loved ones on this Thanksgiving day! With just 6 hours of training spread over the weekend, you can learn and be proficient with its practice. Find a course near you and get yourself this transformative gift!
Explore more techniques and commit to daily
There are many more techniques that you may want to explore and enjoy. But once you find the technique that deeply resonates with you, stick to it and practice it daily to reap its real benefits. Here are a few important tips for meditation that will make your meditation journey a lot easier and fun.
On this day of Thanksgiving, commit yourself to learn and cultivate your daily practice of meditation and see how life changes for you. For sure, you will complain less and smile more often!
Putting a little gratitude in your daily life is a first step to achieving many of your hopes, your dreams, and your goals. After all, it is not that happy people are grateful, but in fact, grateful people are the ones who are the happiest.
By Sejal Shah, E-YRT 500 Sri Sri Yoga Teacher, YACEP, Art of Living Teacher, NYU Post Graduate Medical School approved Yoga-CME retreat facilitator, Mind-Body Wellness Writer, Homeopath