Updated: Sep 10, 2018
I have this incredible ability to take complex subjects and simplify them. I may have developed this gift as a teen in order to deal with my dyslexic tendencies or maybe I was just born with it, but I pride myself in being able to demystify just about anything.
Meditation is one of those things I had to take from my perception of having to become a Buddhist monk in the Himalayan mountains, to a simpler, more practical approach.
I started doing yoga at the age of three with my grandmother, who practiced it daily. I had no idea what yoga was or what it meant to practice it, but as a young child, I copied everything she did. If she stood on her head, I wanted to follow. If she sat in lotus position, I did too.
However, my meditation practice didn't really start formally until about ten years ago, and I wasn't exactly very good at it. I am, after all, bonafide type-A personality, who at times has found it difficult to just 'be'. I used to think that not being in a state of 'doing' was a waste of time and unproductive.
There are many types of meditation techniques and I get asked on a regular basis which type people should try for their first time. My suggestion is to look into Guided Meditation or Mindfulness Meditation, especially if you have a monkey brain like me. They're simple, guided and take the pressure off trying to get to a state where you're not thinking of anything or reach enlightenment; and there are tons of apps on your smart phones that you can download, so you can do it just about anywhere.
Putting it simply, meditation is 'focus', it is 'being present' or 'in the moment'. You can meditate while you're walking and even ironing (I find ironing incredibly meditative), while sitting, in the subway, standing or laying down. As per my Reiki Masters, a true 'master' is able to remain calm and meditate in the midst of chaos.
There's no 'must' way to do it, as long as you reach a state where you're truly present. Then you can graduate to higher levels and techniques where you're able to rid your mind of distractions, but start with baby steps. If all you can do at the start is five minutes, then do so. You can increase the time as you get more comfortable with it and meditate as long as you want, but consistency is key.