At The Mindful Kitchen Company on Saturday 13th May in West Sussex, we will be practising some short mindfulness meditation practices, enjoying bread making, foraging, cake decorating and sharing food. Our hosts, Miranda Gore Browne (Bake Off Finalist and cookery writer) and Gillian Higgins (international barrister and meditation teacher) will be sharing their skills and knowledge with us from 10-4pm at The Kitchen School in Lodsworth.
For those new to meditation, it might be helpful to consider some practical questions we often face at the outset, such as the benefits of meditation, what equipment is needed and where and when to practice.
Why Should I Meditate?
When exploring the question of why practice meditation in the first place, the many benefits that may be reaped from building a daily practice can now be scientifically shown to extend into areas of mental, physical, emotional and spiritual wellbeing.
While meditation is not a panacea for all ills, there is now a significant body of scientific evidence to support the benefits that flow from a regular practice. These benefits include stress management, reducing anxiety and depression, lowering blood pressure, better sleep, improved concentration, feeling happier and more able to deal with life’s challenges.
What Equipment Do I Need to Practice?
A frequently asked question is ‘what equipment do I need to practice?’ The answer is nothing special, simply your body and breath. For comfort, you may wish you want to use a high-backed chair or a cushion on the floor. If you want to lie down, choose somewhere comfortable, again where you won’t be disturbed. If you decide to meditate on your bed, simply be aware of the temptation to drift off to sleep. This is a common experience and may simply reveal that you need more sleep.
Where and When Should I practice?
Having established the benefits of a regular practice, one of the initial practical difficulties often faced by those starting to meditate is finding a place to practice where you won’t be disturbed, even if it’s just for a few minutes. This can be difficult given the demands of both the home and the workplace.
When deciding where to meditate, it is often helpful to use the same space each time and this may be the bedroom, the office, the garden shed, or even the car at the start or end of a journey. If you are able to practice in the same place at the same time every day, this will help to support the building of your new routine. However, if this is not possible, try to see when you can find just a few moments for yourself to be still and quiet. Less more often brings the benefits. However, finding this time on a daily basis can be one of the hardest challenges.
Eric Harrison, author of “Teach Yourself to Meditate” explains that “we can meditate in any posture. We can meditate sitting in a chair or on the floor. Or walking, fast or slow. Or lying down on our side or on our back. Or standing. Or in any posture in between.” There is no best way to meditate. It is important however that your “posture should be comfortable (but not too comfortable), balanced and open (so that you can breathe easily) and alert…The most important general rule is don’t slump.”
If you would like to learn more, please come along to The Mindful Kitchen Company from 10-4pm on Saturday 13th May in Lodsworth, West Sussex. Get in touch through the website to reserve your space.
Date and Time: Saturday 13th May, 10-4pm
Location: The Kitchen School, Lodsworth, West Sussex
Price: £125 April Early Bird or £150