Meditation is becoming more and more fashionable in the Western world. It offers a way to relax and de-stress without resorting to caffeine, alcohol or anything stronger. If you want to know where to get started, check out these tips on how to meditate.

1. Set regular time aside

Like any other hobby or habit, you should set a regular time aside for your meditation. Depending on your schedule, this could be as often as daily or maybe just weekdays or weeks. The important thing is to get started, so even if you can not fit in your ideal schedule or if you miss the occasional day, you're still doing a lot better than deciding to start meditating “tomorrow.”

2. Set aside a quiet space

Most meditation techniques involve you getting immersed in your own private world. Which means that you need a quiet space where you will not be disturbed.

That could be a room in your home, your garden or it could even be a deserted area of ​​a local park. You'll probably instinctively know when somewhere is right for you – it will give off the right vibes and you'll probably get a gut reaction that it's correct or be able to visualize yourself meditating there.

Make sure that your phone is turned to silent and that your friends know that this time is reserved so that they do not disturb you without it's absolutely imperative.

3. Get comfortable

Not so comfortable that you fall sleep. But definitely find something to sit on that will be comfortable for the length of your chosen meditation session. Some people use a meditation cushion for this, others just choose a comfy chair and yet others will sit in something like the lotus position for their meditation. Some people prefer to lie down although if you decide to choose this option, make sure that you're not tempted to doze off.

As you can tell, there is no single correct way to get comfortable for your meditation session. It's better to choose a way that suits you than it is to feel uncomfortable and use that as an excuse not to meditate at all.

4. Make sure that you're relaxed

This is a bit of a chicken and egg situation. Meditating will help you to relax but you need to be relaxed in order to get maximum benefit.

Do not get too hung up on this part of the equation. As you practice meditating, you'll gradually start to become more relaxed anyway.

But if you find yourself getting hurt up before the meditation session even begins then take a few deep breaths to help relax yourself. Maybe treat yourself to a guided meditation to help you progressively relax and use that for the first few times that you meditate.

5. Let your mind go quiet

If you're like most people, this is not easy at first.

Our minds are used to buzzing and they do not stop easily just because you've decided to meditate for a while.

As you begin to meditate, practice allowing your thoughts to quieten down. Personally, I like to imagine that these nagging thoughts are leaving my body every time I breathe out – almost hitching a ride on the air I expel.