Tips on how to meditate with your family at home

By | May 31, 2020

Lockdown has been tough on people right across the country, what with the job losses, business closures, the stress and just the sense of uncertainty in the air. But we’re only now realising just how tough it’s actually been for so many of us.

Short answer? Very tough.

Lifeline Australia, the fantastic 24-hour crisis support telephone service, says calls to their volunteers have increased by 25 per cent, with a new person calling in every 30 seconds on average during the coronavirus crisis. That’s about 3000 Australians, every single day, reaching out for help and support.

In fact, that’s so many calls that Lifeline is turning to a new and pretty innovative way of helping people, with the launch of a free guided meditation session, called The Lifeline Breathing Room.

It kicks off today at 6.30am, and will run for 24 hours, with the 30-minute sessions streamed across Facebook and LinkedIn.

You’ve heard me talk before about just how important I think meditation and mindfulness is, and how it should have a place in everybody’s health and fitness routine.

The science is in. A Harvard Medical study found that just eight weeks of meditation and mindfulness practice actually changed participants’ brain makeup, producing growth in the areas responsible for learning, memory and emotional regulation, while decreasing the areas responsible for anxiety, fear and stress.

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But if you’re still on the fence, The Lifeline Breathing Room is exactly the kind of the thing that will make it easier to get started in the privacy of your own home.

The idea was cooked up by Jason Partington, who founded Sydney’s Making Meditation Mainstream. He says that, if you still feel awkward about getting your Zen on, you just need to see the kinds of people already doing it.

“In the past the stereotypical meditator has been portrayed as deeply spiritual, alternative hippy, swathed in flowing robes. But this is changing,” he says.

“It’s actually people from all walks of life.

“At our free beach meditations there are equal numbers of men and women, and often entire families meditating together. The ages range from five to 85, and we have tradies, professionals, stay at home mums, retirees.”

FAST FACTS ON … MAKING MEDITATION EASY

1. There’s an app for that

“There is just about a meditation for everything you can imagine,” says Jason.

“The Headspace app alone lists 16 that they use including, loving kindness, skilful compassion, focused attention and body scans, but there are literally hundreds of different types with different outcomes.”

2. Do you

“Meditation can range from relaxing music, guided meditations to simple breathing techniques,” Jason says.

“The key is to just get stared – even five minutes a day is beneficial.”

3. Pick your goal

“I believe it is your intention before starting meditation that will determine the outcome,” Jason says.

“For some people, they are just looking for tools on how to combat stress and anxiety or depression, where others are seeking more of a spiritual connection.”

* Send your health and fitness questions to adam@themanshake.com.au

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