Buddha Groove’s Guru Series brings insight from experts across the fields of mindfulness, natural wellness, yoga, and meditation. This week, we have wisdom from meditation guide, 

If you’re brand new to the world of meditation, figuring out where to start can feel overwhelming. You want to be successful, and you know choosing the right one can make or break your practice.

I’ve got your back.

I’ve compiled a list of my absolute favorite techniques, with the reasons you would choose them based on where you’re at in your journey.

As you read through the list, start off with one that stands out to you. Choose the meditation that screams, “This is the one! This is what you’ll be successful at!” That’s sacred Self-letting you know you should start there.

Now, if you find that nothing screams out at you, go ahead and try it according to my recommendations. These are based on thirteen years of meditation practice, and working with clients. So you can be sure it’s a good place to start.

Alright, are you ready? Dig in!

Types of Meditation

Focused

Focused meditation is just as it sounds. It’s all about focusing on a specific aspect within your body or an outside object.

There are several things you can focus on. My favorites are your breath, your chakras, or even the sounds in the room.

Who is this good for? This type of meditation is great for those that want to decrease their anxiety or depression (or any other lower energy feelings), as focused meditation teaches us to turn away from the pain and instead towards peace.

Focused meditation taught me how to let go of my anxiety. I suffered from generalized anxiety for most of my life, as well as suffered through bulimia. Focusing on my breath allowed me to overcome both.

Focusing on peace allows you to release the pain. Why? Because what you focus on increases and expands. Focusing on your anxiety expands your anxiety. Focusing on your depression expands your depression.

You want to focus instead on acceptance. Acceptance of yourself and your feelings.

This occurs naturally as you focus on either the life-giving force of your breath or the energy of your chakras–or finally just the sounds in the room. These are all forms of acceptance.

Guided

Guided meditations are focused on listening to someone else speak as they guide you through a particular meditation or towards an outcome. The types of guided meditations range from relaxation to manifestation. Finding one that works for you will really be based on what you hope to accomplish in your life and your practice.

Who is guided meditation good for? This is good for anyone, honestly. There are guided meditations on any topic, as well as all techniques. They help in that they allow you to stay focused on what you want to be focusing on as they guide you back over and over again.

This one’s going to require a lot of research to find a good one, but it’s great to have in your toolbox of meditations.

I can still remember my first successful experience with meditation. It was all thanks to a guided meditation by Sylvia Browne. I don’t know if you’ve heard of her, but she was a famous psychic. Her guided meditation promised a connection to spirit, and I ended up discovering source with that very meditation.

Now, I don’t think that that particular meditation is available anymore, but there are tons out there! Start off by writing down your goals with your practice, and then searching for those specific goals + guided meditation. From there you can read through reviews, and listen to samples. Choose one that feels right to you. Remember: nurture your intuition by trusting it and following through.

Chanting

Chanting meditation is all about action and vibration.

The process is simple. You chant anything- a sacred word, or sound that feels right. The action keeps your mind busy and active so that you don’t lose your focus. It also connects you to a vibration. Like, OM for example. Chanting OM vibrates that energy throughout your body. Allowing you to feel source within yourself.

Who is this good for? This is good for active minds. Those of you that experience ADD, or ADHD. I’d combine this with walking, for more severe cases. (I’ll describe walking meditation below.) You can also chant when you’re having a rough day concentrating, or if you’d like, to encounter your spirit experientially. Chanting results in a deep feeling of spirituality and connection to the divine.

You can try it right now with the word OM. State out loud, “OM.” (It sounds more like, AUM. You can do a quick search online for the correct pronunciation.) Slowly. Repeat each syllable for about 5 seconds, repeating the full mantra for about 15.

Again, be slow and deliberate. Do this repeatedly for five minutes and notice the sensations you feel within yourself.

Walking Meditation

Walking meditation is all about staying present. Noticing your breath, and your surroundings. The practice entails the act of walking in a deliberate, dignified manner. One in which you become aware, really aware of your body and the feelings of taking each step.

You want to do this purposefully – quietly. You can do this also while walking with your partner. Just make sure you stay quiet here, and just enjoy each other’s company, as you focus on your breathing and your steps.

Who is this good for? This is beneficial for everyone. Great for active minds and others alike. You want to be able to learn to be present within your breath and become mindful, in general. This is where true living begins. Starting your practice here will help you build a good foundation.

TIP: Take your practice out of your walk, and into your normal day-to-day. Become mindful when you eat. Mindful when you’re working. Mindful as you feed your baby, or as you take care of your children.

In time you begin to notice the dramatic shifts remaining present through your life brings.

Mindfulness Meditation

Finally, mindfulness. Mindfulness is becoming an observer of yourself. An observer of your surroundings. You practice by sitting and watching. As thoughts come in, you don’t allow yourself to become involved in them. You just relax and watch. Over and over, relax and watch. Completely accepting things just as they are.

Who is this good for? Those with the intention of self-realization, as well as those suffering from negative emotion. Becoming the observer allows you to disconnect from life, and accept and watch. This is a foundational requirement to awakening. Realizing who you are, comes with full acceptance of the pain and the chaos. Being here now is the path to opening yourself to new points of views–including that of your sacred Self, and of becoming healed.

This meditation was what brought me to self-realization personally. I practiced this daily on the mat and off. The result? A complete knowledge of who I was, and who you are. Light, love, and peace.

That’s it. My favorites. I hope this has helped.

Martita Robinson

Martita Robinson believes in the perfection of humanity and supports women in overcoming life's challenges through holistic healing. Trained in mental clinical health, Reiki and meditation, Martita believes that all of life's problems can be solved by conscious connection to the soul. (That and a healthy dose of dark cacao.)