At least 40% of Americans now meditate at least once a week. Another 8% say that they meditate at least once or twice every month. It’s time that you consider doing the same so that you can also enjoy the benefits of guided meditation.
Meditation, after all, is a 5,000 BCE-old practice that science now also backs up. Yes, numerous scientific studies confirm its many health benefits, particularly its stress-relieving effects.
As such, even if you don’t practice Buddhism, you can still benefit from this ancient practice. As a beginner, however, you may find it easier to nail down the basics with the help of a meditation teacher.
We’ll address all these questions in this post, so be sure to read on!
1. The Science-Backed Health Benefits of Meditation
Meditation, as taught by Buddha, is a key step to achieving freedom from pain and confusion. This freedom then makes way for long-lasting happiness and well-being.
As meditation became widely popular, scientists took to studying the practice. Many studies, like this one, prove that meditation does help reduce stress.
By relieving stress, meditation can then help prevent other problems like sleep disorders. It’s also in this way that meditation can help combat depression and anxiety. Less stress also equates to lower risks of high blood pressure, fatigue, and even memory loss.
Helping prevent addictions is also among the top benefits of guided meditation. That goes for addiction to food, substances, and even worldly desires.
2. Guided Meditation Gives You the Chance to Learn From an Expert
In traditional unguided meditation, you meditate on your own, without any “external” guidance. There are no other voices or equipment involved in this practice. You simply assume the proper meditation posture and then you can start meditating.
This is why unguided meditation is also known as “silent meditation”.
However, sitting in the quietest nook of a room doesn’t guarantee that you can calm your mind right away. This can be especially hard for beginners, as they’re still learning how to meditate. They may have trouble quieting their thoughts, so they may find it hard to achieve a meditative state.
Guided meditation, on the other hand, is an “instructed” form of meditation. You’ll have an experienced teacher who will lead you throughout the session. The instructor doesn’t have to be with you in person — they can guide you through audio or video.
In this way, guided meditation is much like general guided learning, such as what you usually do in school. The benefits of guided meditation may even be more akin to a one-on-one study session with a teacher or a tutor.
Either way, you may find it easier to get into a meditative state if you have someone to lead you to that path. Having instructions to adhere to may help make you more focused, which can then aid you in calming your mind.
3. A Teacher Can Help You Learn the Form of Meditation That Best Suits You
One of the advantages of meditation with a guide is that an expert can teach you the various forms of the practice. Your teacher can help you explore different techniques to help you find those that best suit you. By using the technique that best works for you, you can relax faster and fight off those anxious thoughts.
Meditation instructors also gauge their students’ compatibility with a particular meditation technique. This can then help them develop a method or program tailored to the unique aspects of their students. With this, you may be able to discover the form of meditation that’s just right for you.
This type of “custom learning” is one of the unique benefits of guided meditation. It’s also the reason why beginners to the practice may find it more ideal to start with.
4. Having an Instructor Can Help You Become More Proficient
After you learn the basics, your teacher will guide you as you practice those techniques. Their voice may help make it easier to collect your thoughts rather than stray away from them. Their guidance can pull you back into a meditative state more quickly than if you’re on your own.
5. You Have Someone to Rely on for Help
With a meditation instructor, you have someone experienced to ask for help when you get stuck. For instance, a common dilemma that most beginners face is the inability to relax or to “stop thinking”. Many also say that they keep “spacing out”, “nodding off”, or they feel pain during meditation.
If you encounter any of these, you can simply ask your meditation instructor for advice. You can get answers right away, and straight from experienced teachers. Whereas if you begin meditating without any guide, you may have a hard time finding someone who can help.
6. Learn How to Apply Meditation Techniques in Your Daily Life
The benefits of guided meditation aren’t restricted to just the meditative state. Your instructor can teach you how to apply meditation techniques in your day to day life. They can teach you how to keep your mindfulness or focused breathing throughout the day.
Studies found that mindfulness can help improve mood, brain functions, and pain management. If you get to apply this practice in your daily life, you can then do better at work or school. You can also find relief from pain conditions that may be affecting the quality of your life.
Focused breathing also delivers the same benefits, but it also helps boost concentration. This technique can help sharpen all your senses, from your vision to even how you taste things. By enhancing your senses, you may even find being mindful easier to achieve.
7. You Can Use Your Instructor’s Teachings To Start Your Self-Guided Meditation Practice
Once you have the basics down and you become more proficient, you can then gradually practice on your own. You can use what you’ve learned from your teacher as you try self-guided meditation. As guided meditation is often a faster way of learning, you may be able to switch to an unguided practice sooner.
Once you leave that guided practice, you can use what you’ve learned to meditate on your own. In doing so, you can continue to enjoy the benefits of guided meditation.
Reap the Benefits of Guided Meditation For Life
As you can see, one of the key benefits of guided meditation is that it facilitates faster learning. It teaches not only the basics but also the techniques best suited to your unique conditions. A teacher can help you build a firmer framework for a life of meditation.
Want to start meditating but need more advice for beginners? If so, then please feel free to check out our collection of other useful meditation tips!