In today’s fast-paced world, most of us suffer from distress and anxiety. The simple truth is that we have a LOT going on in our lives. And in the pressure to handle it all, we forget to take care of ourselves. Or even if we try, we fail to get the right results. When we don’t get results, the hangry toddlers in us get frustrated, and we eventually give up.
Take meditation, for instance.
After listening countless times to how beneficial meditation is, we might have tried doing it. But the end result – NOTHING. It doesn’t matter if you sat with good intentions to meditate, but the whole session eventually just ends up being a never-ending series of thoughts and questions in your mind.
Well, we might have a solution to this.
The good news is that finding a specific time and place to meditate can be effective.
Now, we are definitely not saying there is a ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ time to meditate. However, certain hours in the span of a day might be considered the best time to meditate.
But before that, let’s understand what meditation is all about.
Meditation is an art used for thousands of years to develop an awareness of the present moment. Meditation was initially meant to help get a deep understanding of life’s sacred and magical forces.
Now the definitions have changed a fair bit.
Mediation is widely used for relaxation and stress-anxiety reduction. It involves many practices and techniques which help in sharpening the focus and concentration of the human mind, connecting the body to the mind, and aiding in controlling emotions. It has shown many psychological and physical benefits to the human body.
There are no perfect ways to meditate. However, there is a need to find the right type that suits you and the best time to do meditation that can help you reap the maximum benefits.
The different types of meditation are:
- mindfulness meditation,
- spiritual meditation,
- focused meditation,
- movement meditation,
- mantra meditation,
- transcendental meditation,
- progressive relaxation,
- loving-kindness meditation, and
- visualization meditation.
Now, all these types of meditation are not for everyone. Meditation differs according to your requirements and capabilities.
How is meditation beneficial for our mental health?
Practicing meditation provides a sense of calmness, peace, and balance that benefits your emotional well-being and physical health. Moreover, these benefits don’t disappear at the end of your meditation session. Regular meditation has a plethora of mental health benefits.
- improves focus and concentration,
- reduces stress,
- improves self-esteem and confidence,
- helps in battling against addiction,
- reduces anxiety and depression,
- helps in mindful thinking,
- lowers blood pressure,
- uplifts mood and reduces anger,
- improves emotional behavior,
- provides greater adaptability, and
- develops a sense of empathy and connection with other people.
Starting A Meditation Practice
Before we talk about the best time to meditate, let’s look at the factor which makes meditation effective. It’s consistency. Sitting calmly and focusing on your breath is the easiest way to start a meditation routine. Doing meditation regularly yields better results. The more you practice, the better you will get.
The American Psychological Association notes that meditation can improve mental and physical health if practiced consistently. So when people ask when is the best time to meditate, the answer is: DAILY.
Making meditation a part of your daily routine is when you unlock the incredible mental and physical health benefits of meditation for yourself. Start meditation effectively by doing it for 5-10 minutes initially and then gradually making small increments.
Best Time To Meditate For Greatest Benefits
Now, when is the best time to meditate?
Morning or Evening?
Well, the best time to do meditation differs from person to person. Although you can choose what time fits you the most, here are the five timings of the day that might help you reap the maximum benefits.
1) Morning Meditation
Morning is considered to be the ideal time for meditation by many people. The mind is fresh and quiet in the early hours of the day, and meditating early morning can feel soothing.
If you practice morning meditation, then you are able to get a calm and productive mindset before your busy daily schedule. You usually feel fresh, active, and energetic in the morning. And hence doing a short session of morning meditation daily can do wonders for you.
If you are just a beginner, you may consider it a little bit challenging to practice morning meditation regularly for the first few days, especially if you are feeling stressed and depressed. But if you remain consistent and add it to your daily routine, then the positive benefits of meditation will stay with you throughout the day.
Most importantly, you will not be interrupted in the morning by random phone calls and text messages, nor will you be bounded by your daily activities and people needing your attention.
This means you’ll naturally feel more at ease and relax completely, which is very important for deep meditation.
2) Meditate During Lunch Hour
While the morning is one of the best times to meditate, lunchtime meditation can also do wonders for your mental well-being. Most meditators have their main session in the morning or evening, but meditating during the lunch hour can give you a much-needed power break from your stressful day.
It also helps in loosening your “computer desk” muscles. Taking out a few minutes from your busy daily routine and using it to do a 10-15 minute meditation can bring you lots of positivity and energy.
The real deal is to avoid meditating after eating. Try to meditate on an empty stomach for a more profound experience. Aim for one hour after a snack or a minimum of three hours after a full meal.
3) Meditate Whenever You Feel Depressed or Stressed Out
We can’t feel happy and great all the time. There are moments when we feel stressed out or depressed due to various reasons such as workload, financial issues, exams, etc. When this happens, instead of using usual remedies (social media, binge-watching, alcohol consumption), why not try meditating as a stress-buster? Perhaps this is the ideal time for meditation for you.
Meditating during stressful times can help you relax and give your mind the required time and space to pause and think. It can help you feel calm and peaceful. This pause can help you cope with stressful situations more productively and beneficially.
4) Meditate After Work
Meditating right after you get home from work can also be considered one of the best times to meditate. If your job is physically challenging or mentally demanding, meditation is an excellent way to relieve the stress that your body or mind may have built up during your stressful work hours.
Meditating after work also helps you create a boundary between your active work and personal life. It can help you to leave all the stress, tension, and workload behind and allow you to focus on your personal life, including spending time with your loved ones and leisure pursuits.
5) Meditate Before Bed
Some people prefer to meditate at bedtime to unwind. If you enjoy evening meditation and can remain alert and focused, this may be the best time to meditate for you.
Meditation can also help you if you are suffering from sleepless nights or insomnia. The leading cause of insomnia is related to stress for most people. In some cases, stress can simply worsen existing sleeping issues, and you may have to reach out to medications for proper sleep.
Meditation may help you sleep better. As a relaxation technique, meditation helps calm your body and mind while enhancing inner peace. Doing meditation before bedtime can help you reduce insomnia and sleep troubles by promoting overall calmness in the mind and body.
This time when you don’t see instant results from practicing meditation, don’t stop. It might take time, but the benefits will be worth it. Meditation has become essential for every human being nowadays.
Ultimately your best time to meditate might just be different than everything that we have suggested. And it’s okay. Whenever that time maybe, just try to take some minutes from the day out just for yourself. Don’t try to reach for inner peace. Just give yourself the time to breathe freely. That is enough for now. It is one of the most significant treasures you can find.
Now that you know the best time to meditate let’s take you to another practice that might aid your meditation process. To learn more about creating the perfect meditation space for yourself, click here.
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