Thinking about meditation, but not sure where to begin?
As in, really where? Where does one meditate?
You go to the gym to workout, the pool to swim, but where do you go to meditate?
I don’t have a specific meditation room in my home, and I’m guessing you may not either.
So, how do you start meditating when you aren’t even really sure where to go to meditate?
If this stumps you, I totally get it.
I’ve wrestled with this more than a time or two.
Once, I knocked over my water bottle while trying to meditate sitting perched on a high rock sending the water bottle plummeting down a mountain cliff. Then there was the time I tripped and fell while trying to meditate while running. Boy, was that a big mistake!
If you’re like me, trying something new, no matter how great it is for you, takes patience to work through the epic fails.
From my experience of losses to wins, here is The Happy Bishop’s top ten list of places to meditate to get you started on the path to a healthier and happier mind.
10. The beach
Sitting on the beach and meditating can be a fabulous place to explore the innermost recesses of your mind, but only if you happen to be on a private beach.
We are big beach-goers in my family, and I have found that it is challenging to find a time when a beach area is empty.
There always seems to be people around, like the boisterous kids that ghost crab hunt (Those are my kids, by the way), the sunrise turtle patrol who militantly search for turtle tracks (When I’m in my 80’s, that’s so going to be me!), the morning joggers (been there), and the shell collectors (am that person too) to name a few.
When you think about it, there’s a lot of traffic on most beaches and not just the beaches where I am vacationing.
A better place might be a quiet room where you are staying at the beach.
9. The mountains
Sitting on a large rock on a mountaintop also sounds like a fabulous place to meditate.
Be mindful of how far away from hiking trails you are, and that you don’t wander off too far and become lost.
Fun fact, I get lost often during hikes. Many a 1/4 mile hike with me has turned into a rugged 5-mile adventure.
Also, you’ll want to make sure there are no bear, mountain lions, or snakes that decide your choice of a meditation spot is also their favorite spot.
You will also want to make certain that if you perch on a perfect high rock sitting on the top of a steep cliff, you don’t accidentally kick over your water bottle and watch it roll over the side of the mountain, as you yell, “OH MY GOD, noooooooo.” Of course, the yell is met by an echo announcing your folly far and wide.
That might have happened to me.
A better place might be a quiet room where you are staying in the mountains.
8. The spa
Sitting in a lounge chair in the “meditation room” of a spa all bundled up in your soft spa bathrobe and slippers with a cup of cucumber water beside you might sound like a wonderful place to meditate.
It would be if it was just you and not you and a pack loudly chatting strangers bonding over their spa bridal shower.
I might have had that experience as well.
A better place might be your hotel room where you can sit quietly and meditate and not have to worry about anyone trying to engage you in conversation. Wasn’t it obvious to the bridal shower party that my eyes were closed? Why did they keep asking me questions?
7. The lake
The lake is a great place to calm your mind. You can plop your folding chair by the water’s edge, and relax into meditation.
That is until a large group enters the water in front of you, and you feel their stand up paddle boards miss your head by several inches as they run past you. Then, there is that motorboat you saw in the distance that decides that where you are sitting in the sand is a wonderful place to anchor so the kids can splash and swim.
A better place might be in a quiet room in your home before you go to the lake or after you get home.
6. In the car
I have tried to meditate in the car.
No, not while I am driving, but while I am the passenger.
It’s difficult though because your focus has to be away from your daughter’s choice of music (rap), or your husband using profanity, matching the lyrics of the rap music, at the car that just cut him off.
Hey, is that just in my car?
A better place might be in a quiet room in your home before you get into the car.
5. On the train
Trains have a beautiful way of lulling us into a seemingly meditative state, that is until the child sitting behind you starts kicking your seat, or the massive passenger beside you sticks his elbows into what is obviously your area.
It perplexes me why he didn’t move even after I gave him the stink eye.
Public transportation is just that, public.
When you decide to meditate while riding public transit, the person sitting next to you, or behind you, may not be tolerant of stillness.
Maybe a better place would be to meditate before you get on the train in a quiet room while you are at home or when you return from your trip.
4. During your run
Running can bring peace and clarity, with its repetitive movement and rhythmic breathing.
It’s easy to feel like you are in a meditative state.
But you are running, and you have to be aware of traffic. You have to be mindful of where your feet land so you don’t trip.
I might have fallen dramatically on my hands and knees during one run when I let my mind get a tad too zen.
Maybe a better place would be to meditate in a quiet room in your own home after your run.
3. Your backyard
You might find a place of comfort in your backyard.
That is not the case where I live, but I have a friend with a very secluded backyard who likes to meditate in her garden.
She once had a bird land on her shoulder as she meditated.
How cool is that?
I think for me, though, that would have pulled me out of the meditation as my mind began to holler, “Oh my God! Oh my God! There’s a bird on my shoulder; there’s a freakin’ bird on my shoulder. How cool is this? Where’s my cell phone? I need to put this on Insta.”
Maybe a better place would be to meditate inside your home in a quiet room.
2. Your home
Have you noticed the reoccurring location for meditation seems to be in your own home?
There is a good reason for that.
Meditation isn’t about traveling to an exotic place to find peace.
It is about traveling within.
The best place to “travel within” is where you are most comfortable, and for most of us, that place is our home.
1. Anywhere safe, quiet, and still
The ultimate place to meditate is where you feel safe. A place where there is quiet and stillness is your best bet.
You don’t have to travel physically to get there, only mentally. The best place to meditate is where you can sit, breathe, and relax.
The best way to start meditating is through guided meditations. If you would like to try guided meditation, try using an app. There are many meditation apps available, but I use the app Sattva.
Do you have some favorite places to meditate, or some epic fails you’d like to share? Let us hear about them!