Working Mom Meditation: 5 Easy Ways to Get Started

Meditation is a simple and easy way to reduce stress and anxiety. It creates calm, balance, and peace that promotes mental wellbeing, and improves overall health. Practicing meditation each day can also improve your focus, attention, and mindfulness. We’re so busy with the schedules and our kiddos that many working moms think meditation is not something they can fit in with everything else. Some people also believe meditation is an odd practice overall. Let’s break it down from a scientific and practical perspective.

What is Meditation?

Meditation is a practice that evolves the more you do it and it’s a way to create calm and balance in your life. Meditation also has many health benefits that come along with daily practice. It can help you develop mindfulness, awareness, and focus in your world. It’s an ancient practice from thousands of years ago and nearly every religion has practiced some form of meditation.

Research shows that just five minutes of meditation per day can

boost your mood, brain function and reduce stress.

The Science Behind Meditation

Why is mediation important? Chronic stress is so common among working parents. It’s impossible to remove all of the stress from our day, but we can practice different methods, like meditation, to reduce the stress while improving the quality of our lives.

Do you suffer from insomnia? Whether it’s you or your spouse, insomnia complicates every aspect of our lives. It reduces the quality of your work, develops daytime tiredness, creates anxiety about sleep, depression, and the list of issues can continue. Meditation can be the remedy for insomnia if it’s practiced daily.

Meditation is an ancient practice and it’s gained popularity in recent years. Research revealed that practicing meditation on a daily basis can have a positive impact on your mind and body connection.

  1. Reduces stress
  2. Decreases anxiety
  3. Boosts immunity
  4. Improves emotional wellbeing
  5. Lowers blood pressure
  6. Improves memory
  7. Elevates your mood
  8. Improves sleep and reduces insomnia
  9. Helps with addiction
  10. Calms the nervous system

One thing I love about meditation is the focus on how you breathe. Focusing on your breath with each inhalation and exhalation is something that helps shift your racing thoughts to a peaceful calm. It’s a powerful way to reset what you’re thinking about and breathing techniques can be practiced throughout your day. Focused breathing is a way to help manage the ebb and flow of stress each day. It will also help you manage intrusive and ruminating thought patterns by slowing them down as you focus on your breathing.

Types of Meditation

Meditation comes in many forms. The key is finding what works best for you. There’s not a set of rules when you meditate. There’s no right way or wrong way to meditate. It’s a practice that you tweak and refine over time. According to Healthline, there are nine popular types of meditation:

  • Mindfulness meditation
  • Spiritual meditation
  • Focused meditation
  • Movement meditation
  • Mantra meditation
  • Transcendental meditation
  • Progressive relaxation
  • Loving-kindness meditation
  • Visualization meditation

Don’t let all the types overwhelm you! Being open to the possibilities and exploring different kinds of meditation will help you find what works for you. I’ve practiced many of these types without even realizing it.

Eliminate the Excuses

It’s recommended that you meditate for 20 minutes per day. Gasp! How will I ever find 20 minutes every day? This is a common reaction when considering how to add meditation into the daily routine. Let’s break down some of the common reasons why practicing meditation ends before it even starts.

  1. I don’t have time.
  2. It’s too hectic at my house to find a quiet place to practice.
  3. I’d rather spend the time doing cardio or some other form of exercise.
  4. I don’t know where to start.
  5. Who will watch the kids while I practice?

5 Easy Ways to Get Started

Meditation doesn’t have to be another task to fit into your busy schedule. There are many easy ways to meditate when you’re busy. Some of them just take about five minutes. All of the excuses fade away when you just focus on 5 minutes at a time.

  1. Rise and Shine Meditation – morning meditation is a great way to start your day and set an intention. Five minutes is all you need. It’s also an optimal time since you’re rested.
  2. Gratitude Meditation – reflecting on what we are grateful for is a way to feel happy while being grateful for the people and experiences in your life. Practicing gratitude can help restore calm and peace in your mind. It always feels good to reflect on what you’re grateful for.
  3. Before Bed Meditation – quiet the mind and reduce your insomnia with a meditation practice before bed. You can try mindfulness, body scan, or guided meditation. Any of these options will help create calm and support better sleep patterns.
  4. Breathe Easy Meditation – intentional breathing is key to mindfulness and meditation. You can find many ways to practice mindful breathing exercises. An easy way to start is by sitting in a comfortable seated or lying position with your eyes closed. Inhale 1-2-3. Hold 1-2-3. Exhale 1-2-3-4. Empty your breath all the way on the exhale and repeat.
  5. Take a Walk Meditation – I never thought I’d enjoy walking and meditating at the same time. It seems like you’d run into a tree, but it’s very relaxing and calming meditation. It also helps you get present with your surroundings.

Pick your position. I always see pictures with the seated, legs crossed, and palms up position for meditation. That doesn’t work for me. I prefer to lay down with a pillow behind my head. Sometimes I’ll use a blanket for warmth. I always use my lavender-scented eye pillow. Find your position and what makes you the most comfortable for your mediation practice.

Breathing is the cornerstone of any mediation you’ll practice. You’ll notice that meditation will always focus on your breath and if your mind wanders, always go back to your breath and let your mind focus on how you’re breathing. You can find other helpful ways to prevent your mind from wandering during your meditation.

Technology Can Guide Your Meditation

You’d think that technology is the thing to get away from during your meditation. It actually helped me get started with mine. I enjoy guided meditations with soft music and typically a female voice. My goal is not to sit in silence to practice self-guided meditation, although it’s possible I could work up to that one day.

YouTube meditation is a great place to start and how I began my practice. I started with 5-minute meditations. I couldn’t slow my thoughts down during many of the sessions. The combination of practicing yoga and meditation helped me slow my thoughts and focus on my breathing. You can find any kind of mediation when you search. Choices can include:

  1. 5-10-15-20-minute meditations. Some you can set for the night while you sleep. The time options are endless.
  2. Male or female speakers.
  3. Meditation with music or without music. This option also includes sounds of nature like the ocean, birds chirping, rain falling, wind blowing, and more. The choices are almost infinite.
  4. Guided with voice or music-only meditations with minimal voiceover.
  5. Thousands of topics. Type into search the topic you’d like to meditate about and the length of time for example. Many options will appear. Some topics can include abundance, anxiety, positive affirmations, chakra healing, mindfulness, body scan, and more.

You can also find the best meditation app for your needs by searching the app store. Some options include:

  1. Calm
  2. Headspace
  3. Balance: Meditation & Sleep
  4. Chakra Meditation
  5. Healthy Minds Program

Many meditation apps are free and have a paid version. The key is to find what works for you. I’ve downloaded meditation apps on my phone, tested them out, and removed them. It’s ok if an app doesn’t work for you because you will find what you connect with if you search with an open mind.

Develop Your Meditation Practice

I was going to call it a habit, but that word has a negative connotation in some ways. We “practice” yoga and meditation because it’s never final or perfect. The habit develops as it becomes something we do as part of our daily lives. That is why I started out small and with no expectations. Practicing a 5-minute daily meditation for a week was my goal. I was hooked within the first couple of days.

Some days the practice is difficult because my mind is racing with the to-do list or work stress. I still lay down and meditate even if my mind is racing when I begin, because, by the end of the 20-minutes, I’m calm, less stressed, and ready for my day.

Start out with a 5-minute meditation each day and build your practice from there. My typical meditation will last anywhere from 20-25 minutes. Some days I just squeeze in 10-minutes. I usually select 2-3 short meditations from an array of topics I’m drawn to that day. The short meditations create the 20-25 minutes of meditation I enjoy per day. I have a few longer videos I practice over a weekend when I have more morning time available.

Meditation is a practice that can bring peace, calm, and focus into your life. It helps support mindfulness and your mental health. You will experience these benefits the more you try. Take the challenge to practice for 5 minutes a day over the next week and become aware of how you feel. The first step is deciding to try and the rest will fall into place.

Resources

9 Science-Backed Reasons You Should Meditate on a Daily Basis

12 Science-Based Benefits of Meditation

What is Meditation?

27 Meditation Statistics for Your Well-Being in 2022

7 Easy Ways to Meditate with a Busy Schedule

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