Meditation has come into its own these past few years and you often hear people quote how this practice helps them sleep better and brings stillness and calm to their lives. Although its roots are over 2,500 years old, it is only in the last 30 years or so that it has been used therapeutically and become more mainstream.

I loved the idea of meditation and one day I thought this is the day I change my life and become a better person, well what else could I think after reading all these wonderful things! So, with this thought of submerging from my bedroom like a goddess, off I went to prepare my space

The cat went out into the garden and dog in the living room, so I would not get distracted from furry attention. A candle was lit, and soft music was playing in the background and I was ready. This is how it went………

Breath in for four counts and breath out and concentrate, I wonder if the cat is ok? Breath in and breath out, did I hang the washing out? Breath in and out, I must not miss the school run, breath in and CONCENTRATE!!!!!

The more I tried the more I became frustrated and instead of emerging like a goddess, a grumpy middle-aged woman came out the room and disappointedly decided to take the dog out for a walk instead

As I walked through the woods near my home I realised how the colours had started to change and Autumn was making its appearance and wow amazing sounds as well as I walked through the fallen leaves and I could hear the birds in the trees.

I was becoming aware of my surroundings and the way it was making me feel. I was paying attention to my senses, I was connecting to a sense of timelessness and my whole body was relaxed and happy and I had not thought about all my jobs to do. I was just being……

I suddenly realised that this is my meditation, I have found my way to connect with myself and the beautiful world around me. Meditation is deliberately paying attention to things we normally would not even notice and becoming aware of our present moment experience as it arises in a non-judgmentally and compassionate way. This can be done in many forms and the more we drip feed meditation into our every day life the more we can free our minds for a while and give our bodies a rest to rebalance. It helps us become grateful for the things we sometimes miss, and it helps to bring our stress levels down and this is very healing, and the benefits are huge!

Walking meditation became my thing and did it every day no matter what the weather was doing, I started seeing the beauty around me and the way it made me feel for the rest of the day. I then started reading more and realising that meditation came in many forms and there was something to suit everyone. There is breathing meditations, mantras, contemplation, walking meditation, silence, chanting, Zen, Buddhist meditation, mindfulness, visualisation and many more.

I booked myself onto a course and learnt these different types and found it to be the most interesting journey. I can now manage to sit for at least ten minutes in my sacred space and I forgive myself for the odd thought and for the odd worry and that takes a lot of pressure off and I even let the cat in, lets face it cats think they invented it anyway! The more I let myself be the more I seem to be able to sit and free my mind for a while, until the next thought arises but let’s face it I’m only human!

For more information on meditation visit

British school of meditation at  www.teaching-meditation.co.uk

Julieann Foster

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