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Dr. Loretta Standley is a retired Chiropractor, Acupuncturist and a current Yoga studio owner and teacher.  She is a Yoga Alliance Certified Education Provider through Yoga Alliance

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By far, the most difficult thing I ever learned was how to meditate. I am a classic Gemini - "air sign," so for me to get grounded was a Herculean task and I am not joking. My mind moves about the speed of light as does my body. So naturally, when I sit down at any time to be still or if my feet happen to come up off of the ground, to me this means it's time to go to sleep. Once I shut my brain down and slow down my physical energy, I can usually fall asleep so fast that I'm asleep before my head hits the pillow.

What is meditation? -

Meditation is a way that we quiet ourselves so that we can connect with our inner voice or tap into our intuition. It also makes it much easier to have a conversation with God. When we meditate, it gives us time to ponder and reflect on those things that we desire.

How I learned to meditate -

I first started meditating when I took up yoga for my main source of exercise. During yoga, the technique of breathing is called ujjayi breathing. Using this technique helped me immensely because during ujjayi breathing you are only thinking about your breath. While practicing yoga, each and every breath inhaled or exhaled is conscious without your mind wandering. This is a form of meditation by quieting the mind. I was on my way to meditation.

Give yourself time to get quiet -

You don't have to be practicing yoga to concentrate on your breath, but this is how I started meditating. Along the way, I was able to sit quietly without doing the ujjayi breathing and just think deeply and continually. The other thing I had to conquer was giving myself the time to get quiet. I had to take the time to sit without calling someone, turning on the television, listening to CD's or just jumping in the car and running an errand for the sake of being productive.

Moving meditations -

As I began to enjoy meditation more, I found other things that could also keep me in a meditative state. I still wanted to move around. When I incorporated some moving meditations into my schedule, I was one happy camper because I could still move and meditate at the same time.

Coloring -

These moving meditations came in many forms and I still use them to this day. I have always enjoyed coloring in children's coloring books. As started coloring again, I would have a notepad beside me just in case I got an intuitive hit. This was perfect because I was quiet and I was able to write my thoughts down.

Walking a labryinth -

I also took up labryinth walking. A labryinth is a structure that contains winding passages that lead you on a path without causing you to lose your way. A maze is just the opposite. Mazes are designed to create confusion and stop you from getting to your destination. A labryinth is laid out on the ground in a circular winding pattern. It is very therapeutic. There may be labryinths in your area, so check with your local church. The labryinth that I visit is at convent.

You might also go to your local bookstore and look in the metaphysical section. They have labryinths made of wood that come packaged with sand. You pour the sand over the labryinth and use your finger to trace the path with your eyes closed. While tracing this path, it allows you to meditate and get quiet.

Drumming -

Another moving meditation I just love is drumming. I use a drum that I can hold with both hands and it is filled with tiny bb's. I sit on the floor and hold the drum and roll the bb's around or side to side. While sitting there I meditate and the sound of the bb's sounds very similar to the ocean tide. I rarely use the drumstick, but it may be very therapeutic to release anger or hurt.

Journaling -

Journaling is also a very creative way to meditate. When working with a meditative journal it looks just like any other journal except what you write you are open to divine guidance directing your pen. Allow the pen to spill any words or wisdom, emotion, dreams, ideas and passions without giving it a second thought. It is a very useful tool to get the creative juices flowing.

These are a few of my favorite ways to meditate.

Enjoy the site and remember to take care of yourself.

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**This web site's goal is to provide you with information that may be useful in attaining optimal health. Nothing in it is meant as a prescription or as medical advice. You should check with your physician before implementing any changes in your exercise or lifestyle habits, especially if you have physical problems or are taking medications of any kind.