For World Meditation Day, Stylish Spy looks at this practice of self-induced quiet contemplation
What is meditation?
Meditation has long been a part of Western and Eastern philosophies designed to bring religious followers closer to their spiritual leader. In the East, meditation has also been used as a spiritual exercise, alongside chanting, singing or yoga.
Today meditation helps us access the quiet spaces in our minds in order to relax, de-stress and promote a sense of wellbeing. It can be practised anywhere that’s quiet, be it at home, in a park or in a spa.
What is meditation good for?
Meditation is believed to promote calmness, heighten self-awareness, and develop and maintain focus. Some studies have suggested meditation can also reduce stress and deliver positive changes to our metabolism, blood pressure and other bodily processes.
What to expect from a guided meditation session
You can meditate almost anywhere, at any time, wearing anything you feel comfortable in. Classes tend to take place in tranquil places and are suitable for anyone, no matter your age or your level of fitness.
Sitting or lying down, your instructor will lead you through a journey of breathing and visualisations, sometimes concentrating on a topic. This topic could be anything from learning patience, forgiveness, acceptance or positivity to simply walking through a peaceful garden.
By the end you should feel calmer – if a little spaced out.
Try meditation at:
Swinton Country Club & Spa where monthly evening sound bath sessions take place. Here sound waves from a voice or an instrument - such as a drum or Himalayan Singing Bowls - are absorbed by the body to restore balance to your physical, mental and emotional state. Non-member sessions cost £25; reducing to £20 for members. Add a spa day for £85.
Ragdale Hall Spa’s three-night Be Kind to Yourself Retreat (£235pp) combines breathwork, silent stretch and mindful walking with healing treatments such as Reiki and Heavenly Holistic Facials. Daily workshops include Journaling, Juggling and Learning to Love Yourself.
Or try SenSpa's AlphaSphere, a rejuvenating pod that incorporates colour and sound therapy with aromatherapy and vibration to promote mental balance and encourage self-healing. Choose the blue programme for balance and calm, pink for sentimental moments, red for strength and orange to energise. 25-minute sessions start at £25pp. For the full spectrum, choose silver (50 minutes, £25).