Soulful Path
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Not so long ago, if you heard the word ‘meditation’ a picture of a monk would come to mind, but today people from all walks of life practice meditation. Business executives, athletes, stockbrokers, and lawyers all incorporate meditation into their lives. Even large corporations such as Google, Target, and General Mills advocate the use of meditation to their employees.

People practice meditation for a number of reasons, and often for more than one. These reasons include such things as improving your spirituality, decreasing your stress levels, and increasing your power of concentration and focus.

The basic concept behind meditation is that it allows you to control your own thoughts, instead of letting others control them for you.

bamboo-fountain-100-x-100People who regularly practice meditation often find that their self discipline improves. Scientists are also discovering health benefits to meditation, such as lowering blood pressure and boosting memory functions.

Here are five common forms of meditation. If you practice any of them, or would like to learn more about a particular form, let us know in the comments below!

Mindfulness

Meditating WomanHow many times in the day do you find your thoughts wandering? Probably dozens of times at least and this wandering process can be totally distracting.

Mindfulness allows you to become aware of all these thoughts and learn to respond to them rather than just react. This is achieved by paying attention to just one thing for as little as 5 to 10 minutes. Many people like to focus on the sounds of a waterfall or birds chirping in the background. Or you could just concentrate on your own breathing by coming aware of each breath that you take.

Active Meditation

This is where you use physical activity to help sync your mind and body. To perform this type of meditation you can simply walk or take part in a yoga class.

Mantras

This is one type of meditation that you may have heard of. It is done by repeating a phrase or quote over and over. Select a phrase that holds meaning to you and repeat several times during the day.

Insight Meditation

With this form of meditation you simply focus on one thought or feeling. Choose a topic such as love or anger and then meditate on what this means to you.

Guided Meditation

This type of meditation uses some form of guidance. It could be a person in the same room with you or it can be done by listening to an audio recording. During the process you generally make use of your imagination to mentally place yourself in the scenario described by the person guiding the meditation. This can be a very enjoyable and liberating experience.