Meditation is a helpful spiritual tool for recovery from drug and alcohol addiction. People associate all kinds of images and ideas with meditation without knowing just what will happen when they start meditating. Here are some of the things you might have to endure when you start meditating.
Meditation before bed is as good as medicine. Slowing down the nervous system and helping the brains settle down, meditation encourages the body to reset after all the chaotic happenings of the day. Focusing on the breath helps the body and brain get that extra bit of oxygen it needs before going to sleep. When oxygen reaches the muscles, it helps them relax. Some people find that their mind races before going to sleep. Meditation helps to quiet the mind. Practicing some mindfulness with meditation will train the brain to let go of the stress from the day and focus only on the present moment, which is thankfully bedtime.
Mindful meditation asks you to pay attention to the thoughts that come up as you try to settle your mind into not thinking much. You acknowledge the thoughts which arise, notice them, actively try not to label or judge them, then practice just letting them go. In doing so, you start to recognize patterns of what you’re thinking and why you’re thinking it. When adverse situations arise which would usually call for a particular reaction, you find yourself stopping to think about that reaction before acting on it. Where you might have once reacted adversely, you find yourself able to pause, notice your thoughts, and take a moment to choose how you would rather react.
Learning to recognize patterns of your own suffering through noticing your thoughts and observing how they effect you helps you to be more compassionate toward yourself. Compassion is about recognizing that someone experiences suffering of their own, then developing a kind and loving sympathy for them. It is harder to be kind toward ourselves than it is to be kind toward others. When we meditate and foster that self-compassion, our kindness toward others changes. It deepens and widens in our hearts. We feel a whole-heartedness toward the world we never noticed before.
Connecting to the breath is like connecting to the source of life. Even if you can’t engage in a full twenty minute or hour long meditation during the day, you find yourself searching for every opportunity you can to take a deep breath. Just taking one moment to mindfully take a deep breath in and let a deep breath out is a moment of meditation. Overtime, you’ll notice that when you are in need of receiving, your inhale will lengthen. Likewise, when you are in need of letting go, you will be able to exhale for longer without hardly taking a breath in.
Enlightened Solutions teaches our patients meditation as part of a spiritual skill set for overcoming the power of addiction to drugs and alcohol. We offer multiple levels of care to men and women seeking compassionate change in their lives regarding addiction and dual-diagnosis issues. For more information call 833-801-5483.
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