What if there was an easy way to practice meditation in a way that helps you focus, relax, and increase your aptitude for empathy and compassion?
With just 4 sentences recited to yourself or out loud, you can begin a daily practice of METTA Meditation, a form of mindfulness meditation; proven to help reduce anxiety and depression and increase self compassion and enhance social connection.
If you are new to METTA, or any meditation practice, it’s important to remember to have patience with yourself as you begin a practice. Meditation of any form can feel difficult and overwhelming at first. It is through consistency of practice, that you begin to feel more at ease, more peace, and more openness within your heart.
METTA Meditation, also known as loving kindness meditation is a mindfulness practice that allows you to practice sending love to yourself, your friends and acquantencies, and even the difficult people in your life.
During a METTA Meditation practice, you recite the following statements to yourself and do your best to feel it in your heart as you do.
- May I/You Happy
- May I/You be Healthy
- May I/You be Well
- May I/You be at Peace
Various versions of METTA exist that all follow the same frame work of statements. It’s important to choose phrases that you connect with personally and worry less about the exact wording. The practice is meant to become very enjoyable, so choose the version that feels the best for you. (You can’t mess this up!)
When you sit for a seated moment to practice METTA, it is suggested to cycle through the phrases with the intention sent for the following people. (It may be helpful to visualize an image of the person you are sending loving kindness toward.)
As you find yourself in a moment of relaxation, begin your practice by going through the 4 statements above to yourself, someone you know, a neutral person in your life, and a difficult person in your life.
- Yourself – METTA is derived from self compassion and is a beautiful practice to help cultivate a loving and accepting relationship with you first.
- A family member or friend – someone you know well and love where it feels easy to send love their way.
- An acquaintance – the person who rang up your groceries or the couple who jogs by your home. The purpose of this practice is to learn how to get comfortable sharing kindness with those you do not know on a personal level.
- A difficult person in your life – METTA has a beautiful way of softening the mind, if even for a moment. When beginning your loving kindness practice, use awareness and take note of how you feel. Even if it feels challenging, try to visualize the person who comes to mind and repeat.
While you continue to practice METTA meditation, it is important to begin to connect with the feeling of the words in your heart as you recite them to yourself. Repeating phrases that are coupled with truly feeling the words in your heart is the true practice of loving kindness that allows you to open your heart and find sameness with every being on Earth.
Remember compassion and empathy are challenging to share with others if at first you don’t recognize these sentiments within yourself. That’s why the purpose of METTA Meditation is to cultivate a state of self compassion first, allowing you to find acceptance for you and eventually learn how to share that same level of compassion with all beings around you.
Meditation is a useful and proven tool to help you create more calm and love so you can find moments in peace within and share your ability to love with the world. It’s not always easy, and that’s exactly why it’s called a practice. Therefore, aim not for perfection, rather than the willingness to practice and the dedication to do so.
Meditation, Loving Kindness, and EMDR are just some of the many tools that the therapists at Inner Clarity utilize to help our clients reconnect with themselves and come to a state of acceptance in life. We are here to help you too so you can find peaceful moments as you ride the wave of this ever changing world. Book your first appointment now so you can create your inner clarity and find with giving and receiving kindness to all. SCHEDULE HERE