We wanted to find a way to help you - and us, to turn down the noise and find some calm in these extraordinary times.
Due to COVID-19 many aspects of our daily lives are slowed down or even on pause. But there is still a lot of noise everywhere – with so much news, stories and information. We wondered if we could take the concept of ‘noise-cancelling’ and apply it instead to ourselves, rather than just our headphones.
Albin Hagmayer is part of our Libratone Customer Success team. He has a passion for meditation and has been practising for nearly a decade. We asked him for suggestions, based around meditation techniques, that he would be happy to share to help us all to turn down the noise.
What follows is a five-day programme of guided meditations – each one around 10 minutes long. They are designed to give you techniques and examples of meditation practises that you can use in your own time and at your own pace. We hope you find some value in it and it provides you with some trusted tools to bring you calmness, focus and some peace. For those new to meditation we have also gone into some more detail below on what you can expect to hear each day.
Over to Albin.
Why do we meditate?
We meditate to be aware of the moment. Sometimes you hear mediations are good to quieten the mind, focus, gain more patience or help you be more compassionate. What l have learned over many years of practise is that the above points can be a benefit or the outcome after meditation. However, you don’t meditate with a future goal, but to be more aware of yourself in the present.
We all have access to noise cancelling devices, like our headphones. But our body does not have such a button that we can press to turn off the noise. Through meditation therefore we can learn to focus our attention better on the thoughts inside us and try to dial down all the noise surrounding us to create a sense of calm.
What do I need?
You don’t need to have any previous experience with meditation, you just need to find 10 minutes in your day to sit down on a chair or cushion, and a device to listen to the meditation exercise with. I suggest sitting because your posture is more awake. However, there is no right or wrong, so do what you feel is most comfortable for you. For the exercise on Day 4, we do suggest lying down.
Introduction to the meditations
I will guide you through meditations that are good for helping you to relax, feel more focused, sharpen our senses and make us more aware of our breathing. Mindfulness is a part of my life. I have a routine to wake up and meditate, like tuning in to the day, to my body. As I heard from a teacher once, “Before you start a concert, you also tune your instrument”, so I tune my instrument - my body, before I start my day. You will find some meditations that are better for you in the morning, some for during the day or others before bed. We have shared a five day programme as that is a reasonable length of time to ask you to commit to. Also, the more you practise the more it becomes a part of your routine.
Day 1: Introduction and breathing
Let’s start with the first meditation, a simple breathing meditation. I like this meditation because it makes me aware of how much is going on in my mind and challenges me to focus on my breath.
Breathing is THE WAY for me to get back to my home base (or my centre). Breathing for me means energy and life, and good breathing techniques are an anchor in times like these where there is too much noise around us or maybe too many noises also in my head. You could say that breathing is the ANC (active noise cancelling) of meditation!
Day 2: Breathing with different focus
This one is great to help you get even more awareness on your breathing. For me, it gives a deeper understanding that breathing is not "only breathing“, and so it can feel different depending on where I focus. Through the day emotions can pop up and these can change the way again we breathe. I feel for example anger in my chest, or anxiety in my throat, happiness in my stomach, and so on…..Through this meditation, I have learned to focus on the airflow and the different areas where we can feel the breath.
Day 3: Counting the breath
Counting the breath is a very strong tool to have for when we experience a super busy mind. You can do this through the working day, at your lunch break or on your way home. Talking about perfect places for meditation…In the beginning, I needed to have quiet surroundings and know it was only me inside my apartment. It gave me more control and I could relax. Then I started to be more relaxed about meditating and now I’m able to mediate in busier places – such as on public transport or in a park on a bench. I close my eyes and focus on my breathing or other exercises. What is important is that you are meditating and you decide the right time for it, when you feel good about it. You have to feel comfortable about sitting and ready to listen inside yourself.
This particular exercise is a great focusing tool. Try this for 10 minutes and you will feel more focused.
Day 4: Body scanning
A fantastic way to end your day is through body scanning. Body scanning is focusing your attention and awareness to the different parts of your body. This meditation you can do lying in your bed so that you can relax and it can help you sleep. Or alternatively, try it at the beginning of your day to get in touch with your body and to gently wake it up.
Day 5: Sensations - breathing, hearing, smelling
The meditation today is going to have a focus on the different sensations. We will start with focusing as usual on our breath, thee moves to sensations in our body, our hearing and sense of smell.
This meditation makes me feel awake and can give a great boost throughout the day, to allow you to refresh your senses. It is a different type of meditation because we also check in with our surroundings and are not only paying attention to what's going on internally in our mind and body.
As we come to the end, I would like to thank you for your time. I hope you gained something out of it! I would also like to give you some ideas to continue with more meditation if you liked it.
- I love Calm.com, I have subscribed to it for the last four years and there content is really great and they have a fantastic crew behind it.
- Also, a good tool is InsightTimer.com.
- Yoga – if you find that meditation is maybe not quite suiting you then an alternative to try is Yoga. There are many different online teachers on YouTube or apps, so you can try for free. But some people prefer Yoga as a way to connect with their body as they prefer a moving meditation than to being still on a chair. Do what gives you energy and leave the rest!
It was a pleasure to do this program for you. Thank you for your time and I hope you found some calmness and maybe some inspiration to bring some lightness in your day.
I wish you all the best,