The human body is one of the most mysterious things in the universe; it communicates to us in myriad different ways. Fear? Our heart beats fast. Anxiety? An ache in the chest. Happiness? A feeling of lightness.
Our body is like a mirror that shows us what we feel on the inside. However, by not paying attention to the body, we distance ourselves from our thoughts, feelings, and emotions.
So, we never get to learn who we are and this, my friend, is a very low possibility. To avert this prospect, we need to connect with the body and practice body scan meditation.
Why Body Scan Meditation?
It is one of the best meditation techniques that train you to be attentive to your body’s discomfort, pain, and sensation.
Plus, a body scan is very easy to learn, and once you learn it, you can do it all by yourself without any help. Don’t believe me? Try this meditation practice right now. You will see for yourself what I am talking about.
How to Practice Body Scan?
All beginners need is a friendly guide who makes the whole meditation process easier than it sounds, and I can do that for you.
I am willing to be your friend/ guide for the body scan meditation. All you need to do is follow my instructions.
Let us begin.
1. For any meditation practice, it is important to be comfortable. In case you plan to do a body scan before going to sleep, then lying down is a preferable option. Otherwise, you can choose to sit. As long as you are comfortable, any posture works!
2. Once you settle down in a comfortable posture, gently close your eyes and focus on your breath. Can you feel your breath? Notice how the air fills and leaves the chest as you breathe in and breathe out.
3. Now pay attention to the body. You can decide where to start from- right hand, right leg, left hand, left leg, or the top of your head. Choose any part of your body and continue to breathe slowly and deeply. As you do so, sensations like pain, discomfort arise.
4. For example, you could experience an ache in the chest region, pain in the neck. But don’t worry, it is all part of the process. Whatever be the sensation, acknowledge it and accept all the thoughts that accompany your bodily sensations. Observe the sensations for 20 seconds to 1 minute.
5. Remember. While thoughts arise, there are chances of getting caught up in those thoughts, which is likely to happen more than once. When you do, don’t feel guilty and angry. Whenever distracted, gently bring your awareness back to the body part.
6. Continue this exercise and scan every part of your body. For instance, if you start from the feet, then move up to the top of your head. Once you complete the meditation, run a quick scan to see how you feel. Do you feel good? Is there pain or discomfort in any part of the body? If there is, then breathe through it to release tension.
7. After scanning the body completely, take a minute and be aware of your entire body for a few seconds. Gently open your eyes and pay attention to your surroundings.
Now that you are all ready. Here are a few additional tips for you beginners:
- You can practice body scan whenever you experience any sort of stress, pain, or discomfort.
- If you don’t have time to do the full-body scan, you can keep it short by focusing just on the body part where discomfort, pain, or tension resides.
A simple secret to a healthy life is to pay attention to your body. Observe your body because it communicates all your emotions way before your mind does. To understand how you experience emotions, the body scan is one of the best meditation techniques.
As you practice it, you connect with your physical self and understand yourself better. Any pain, sadness, anxiety? Now you know how to deal with them using body scan.