Whether you realize it or not, it’s time for a change. One way to make positive changes in your life is to engage yourself in a little meditation.
Throughout this 10 day meditation, you will set goals, relax, pay more attention to your thoughts and feelings and create extra inspiration for your future self. Meditation is a little something different for everyone, so the point of all this is to help you figure out the activities that make you feel most in tune with yourself.
Day 1: Set a goal
Even meditation should have an end goal. Spend time alone today deciding what you want to get out of this 10 day meditation. This is important not only for keeping yourself on track throughout the next 10 days, but also for practicing how to sit still and silent while still thinking positively and productively. Do you want to reduce stress? Make an important decision? Reduce negative self-talk? Decide, and write it down.
Day 2: Sit quietly for 10 minutes
Find a quiet place, free of distractions, and stay there, alone with your thoughts, for 10 minutes without interruptions. You can do this at the start of your day or toward the end depending on what works best for your schedule. The point of the exercise is to clear your mind and either prepare for or reflect on the day, working through scenarios that may occur or recalling things that did happen. Keep your goal in mind as a focal point so your mind doesn’t wander. What are you going to, or did you, do today that made you feel good? What made you feel bad? Why?
Day 3: Engage in a mindless activity
Meditation is not limited to sitting alone with your eyes closed and reflecting, though in small intervals that might work very well for you. Meditation can also involve spending time doing something you enjoy that doesn’t simultaneously add too much unwanted stress into your life. Take a walk somewhere nearby. Paint or draw. Write in a journal about whatever you want. Do something that doesn’t involve staring at a screen or talking through something with another person. Focus on your actions, thoughts and feelings as you engage in whatever simple activity you’ve chosen.
Day 4: Sit quietly for 15 minutes
A major part of meditating is just training yourself to not be so easily distracted. A positive change to make in your life is learning how to be more productive and spend less time procrastinating, and meditating can really help you to learn this lesson. It doesn’t matter what you think about, realize or decide during these 15 minutes, as long as you keep away from your phone and computer and focus on keeping your train of thought from derailing.
Day 5: Reflect
Reflection is essential for tracking and maintaining self improvement, because you can’t change if you don’t have a way of measuring how far you have come or how much progress you have made. Reflect on where you are, mentally and physically, compared to where you where five days ago. Have you taken any steps to accomplishing the goal you set at the beginning? How has meditating, so far, helped you? What areas can you still improve on, and how can you use meditation to make that happen? Write it down.
Day 6: Stay positive
Focus on positive affirmations today. This is the point in your 10 day meditation where it’s going to get a little harder before it gets easier. Stick with it. Whatever you have going on, remind yourself that you can do this. You are strong enough. This is not pointless. Tell yourself this is worth it and that you deserve it. Every negative thought that creeps into your mind, counter it with something positive, no matter how small of a victory it may seem.
Day 7: Pinpoint that “one thing”
Everyone has that “one thing.” That thing they have always wanted to do, but have continuously made excuses as to why they can never get started. Up until this point, you have been too busy; too tired; too scared. Spend time today being honest with yourself. What is that “one thing” you have never been able to convince yourself to do, no matter how much you’ve wanted to? Decide right then and there what it is, how you are going to make it happen and when it’s going to get done. Each time an excuse tries to stand in your way, push it aside.
Day 8: Give yourself a cutoff point
You work too hard, do you know that? Meditation can involve relaxation, too. In fact, it most certainly should. Today, choose a time in the afternoon or evening past which you will not do any work or chores. You will not answer your phone, check emails or pay any mind to your to-do list. Instead, you will do nothing, whether that means sitting on the couch watching a movie or T.V. show, playing a board game or returning to your go-to mindless activity. Focus on how doing this makes you feel. Anxious? Relieved? Try it once, and make it a point to do it again at least weekly, if not more often. It’s good for you.
Day 9: Create an inspiration board
Whether your meditation sessions are almost over or you’re going to continue on, there are always going to be times when you’ll be feeling down and need something to pick you back up again. Create a board or poster, something you can return to and look at when you need it, filled with things that inspire you. They could be quotes, they could be Bible verses, they could be photos or memories or song lyrics. The point is to create something tangible you will see when you’re having a bad day.
Day 10: Reflect again
Reflect again, this time focusing on how you are thinking and feeling compared to when this all started on day one. Did you accomplish the goal you set at the beginning, or at least take small steps toward achieving it? What have you learned? What do you wish you could have done differently? Did this experience fall below or rise above your initial expectations? The best part about a 10 day meditation is that you don’t have to stop once the 10 days are over. You can keep going, and continue to improve your life little by little as you do.
Whatever you learn about yourself throughout these 10 days of mediation, it’s almost guaranteed that it will change your life. Spending time alone and daring to be honest with yourself about what you want and need is a great first step in figuring out how to improve your life and yourself.