If you’ve been picking up mindfulness meditation from online resources or books, you may face similar struggles like many beginners, despite having clear instruction on what to do. You may find yourself floating away with your thoughts moments after closing your eyes. Or your first few attempts of meditation could bring more frustration rather than relaxation. That’s when guided meditation audio comes in handy.
Truth to be told, there was no guided meditation audio during my days of learning meditation (but I can’t complain much as I learn meditation from an experienced meditation teacher).
Why I highly suggested guided meditation audio?
Simply because it’s been helping me relax on the days that my mind decided to turn itself into a messy state of a circus. Believe me, sometimes it’s hard to meditate on stressful days especially for if you are trapped in the busy city life.
What Seasoned Meditation Practitioners Thought About Guided Meditation?
Without a doubt, if you are starting mindfulness meditation, you would find that guided meditation audio does calm your mind down quickly and get you started on the right foot. Let’s check what other seasoned meditation practitioner thought about guided meditation.
Author of The Essence Of Meditation
Guided meditation can be a good way for someone to start out. The guide’s voice can be useful to keep the student’s attention focused, and instructions can be delivered directly throughout the session, so the student can focus on what they are doing instead of how it should be done.
That said, it is important to remember, guided meditations are only the beginning. For the more advanced practitioner these can be more useful for the purposes of relaxation. Listening to a guide means less applied effort from the listener, making it ideal for stress release, but probably less useful for deep meditation.
Meditation Teacher & Author Of MindfulMinutes.com
I absolutely think that guided meditation is a helpful way for beginners to begin a meditation practice. Quieting and focusing the mind comes easier for some people than others, and having the tool of a voice to follow assists this process tremendously, especially when you’re first starting out with a meditation practice.
Different personalities will gravitate toward different techniques; for some guided visualization works best, while for others breath awareness or mantra-based meditations are most supportive. Starting out, it’s best to experiment with different guided mediations to find out what’s best for you.
Guided meditation actually facilitates the experience of meditating. It enables you to reach the physical and mental state of ‘just being’ in a way that would otherwise be difficult to attain on your own without lengthy and regular practice. It’s a great way of training the body and mind to enter relaxed, positive states: creating new neural pathways during the process of meditation to help you reach those positive states again more easily. Guided meditations cover a wide range of genres and all of them support a more harmonious sense of health and wellbeing.
Looks like I’m not the only one advocating guided meditation to assist in meditation practice.
Will Guided Meditation Affect The Practice Itself?
There are always going to be some traditional meditation practitioner who argues that you won’t develop mindfulness, concentration power or even these scientifically proven benefits if you depends on guided meditation heavily.
Good point there.
When you learn driving, you have an instructor sitting next to you (probably drenched in cold sweat when you’re finished). The point is eventually you have to take the wheel on your own.
Which is why I never suggested guided meditation audio to replace mindfulness meditation. I only suggested to use it sparingly and wisely in your practice. Because it helps beginners to focus in their first few session.
The added intensity of a guided meditation arises because somehow we’re more receptive to verbal suggestions that are made out loud.
In fact, Boddhipaksa of WildMind echoed this view on his article Guided Meditation VS “Flying Solo”.
Pheew. (cold sweat).
I risked going against “tradition” by suggesting using guided meditation to aid the practice. But I remind myself that the substance is more important than the form.
How To Use Guided Meditation For Mindfulness Practice?
Keeping Focus With Guided Instruction
It depends on what you are trying to achieve.
Some people use guided meditation for the narrated instruction it provides. It helps you in keeping focus and also providing instructions on what to do on your first few sessions. It’s pretty helpful because new meditator will have their mind wandering away barely 10 seconds into it.
If you think such guided meditation is useful for your mindfulness practice, I suggest you check this FREE resources from UCLA.
I never use word-by-word guided meditation because I learn meditation from a teacher. And the instructions are pretty simple. But it could be helpful for others.
Calming The Mind With Relaxing Meditation Audio
If a troubled mind after a stressful day is your main concern, then this could be a better way to start meditation.
In fact, this is one of my favorite methods to relax before I do meditation or even writing a blog post like this.
I listened to guided meditation audios (some with brainwave technology) to calm my mind. I do that for around 15 minutes before proceeding to actual mindfulness meditation itself (or writing a post like this).
In this case, I’m not so particular if the guided meditation is related to mindfulness meditation or not, as long as it managed to calm my mind quickly.
Here’s where I normally get my guided meditation audio from. You can get a free copy of Blissful Mind Meditation Audio or preview their various ranges of meditation audio.
Either way, I hope guided meditation audio does help you in your mindfulness meditation. Meditation should not end in frustration. Hope this helps.
Over To You :
What’s your greatest frustration in meditation? Have you given up meditation because you don’t know what to “think” or “focus” after you close your eyes? Share your thoughts here.