By Guest Blogger Alanna Blundo. Meditation Teacher & Founder of The Meditation Marketplace.

Most people would recommend that you meditate if you are stressed but I disagree. Meditation requires a certain level of concentration and it is far easier to meditate if you are already semi-relaxed.

Taking time to relax and unwind is important and will help you to be much better at meditating. Relaxation is about stripping back the layers of stress that we have accumulated throughout the day.

Remember there is no point in rushing to relax. By taking some time to unwind and prepare you will find that you are able to get into meditation much faster and at a much deeper level. The deeper your experience of meditation the more likely it is that it will stay with you and become a natural part of your life.

Here are a few things that you can do before you meditate in order to relax, and unwind if you have had a stressful day:

  • Have a cup of tea in silence. Talking uses up so much energy and if we are stressed our energy levels will be decreasing. Taking the time to sit in silence is a great way to restore and preserve energy.
  • Take a bath or long hot shower to unwind.
  • Write in your journal so that you get all of the things out your head that you need too.
  • Do a few light yoga poses. Anything where you invert the body is good because you will be switching on the parasympathetic nervous system, which is the bodies natural relaxation response. Some poses that I would recommend are child’s pose, forward fold and lying down and putting your legs up the wall. Stay in each of these poses for 3 – 5 minutes.
  • Read your book or something positive and inspiring if reading is something that you love doing.
  • Listen to some relaxing music like piano.
  • My other suggestion is to write a list of all of the things you need to do tomorrow so that you no longer need to think about them. Really take the time to prepare for the next day.
  • Clean up your space and light a scented candle if you have one or burn some incense. The incense I use is called Nag Champa and I always use the same incense for meditation or when relaxing because this reminds my body of the feeling of relaxation every time I comes across this particular scent.
  • If you have your own routines or own favourite way of relaxing and unwinding, then feel free to do that instead!

Once you have done these things, then sit down to do your meditation. You will find this really helps.

My advice is to relax in a way that you truly enjoy. Be serious about relaxation and meditation but don’t make it like a chore. Make it part of your daily life. You don’t need to do all of these things. However doing one or two of them daily (even if you are not feeling stressed at all) will definitely help and might just even prevent unnecessary high levels of stress all together!




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