I started meditating a couple of years ago and can honestly say that it is probably one of the most beneficial things I have ever done. I can't tell you why exactly, but when I practise regularly, I just feel better. I have times when I don't meditate and I can tell. I always sleep better, am calmer, happier and make better decisions. Why? Because I've reconnected back in with myself.
Don't take my word for it. Try it and see for yourself and see if it improves things for you.
Meditation for me isn't sitting cross legged in a room for hours quietly 'omming' to myself and clearing my mind of all thought. It's about sitting down somewhere quietly, closing your eyes and just breathing.
Things to try
This is a technique I learnt from Tyler Tolman. It is so simple that even on days when the day slips away, I still make the effort to do this. Sit or stand or even walk somewhere. Breathe in for 7 counts, hold for 7 counts and then breathe out for 7 breaths and hold for 7 counts. Do this 7 times. That's it. Do it when you first wake up, when you are in the car, out for a walk. Try to breathe deeply - start with your belly, move up to your chest and then right to your shoulder blades taking in as much oxygen as you can. Great if you are tired and need a lift! Oxygen has an amazing effect on the body!
An Ap a day...
There are a huge number of meditation aps out there to help get you started. My favourite is 'Headspace'. You can download a 7 day trial free and select the amount of time (e.g. 10 minutes) and you will be guided by the lovely Andy through your meditation. There are meditations available for everything from self-esteem to sleeping and you learn more techniques as you go. There are also meditations for kids. It's a great place to start.
This is a great one for kids and can be a great adventure. If it's day time, get a rug and just cloud watch for five minutes quietly then get the kids to tell you all the 'things' they saw! Opens up a whole lot of conversations!
If it's night-time (probably best in the warmer months) get a rug and gaze at the sky. The night sky is beautiful and it's hard not to find it soothing! Do it quietly to begin with then let your kids tell you all about what they saw.
Alternatively, if you don't have kids, just do it anyway! You'll love it!