Setting the mood for meditation is important in being able to focus on the mind and on the self, away from physical distractions.
It’s also a place where you can practice mindfulness and strengthen your psychological defenses against stress.
Set up your meditation room with these 11 essential elements.
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1) Natural Light
In order to project an image of calm and peacefulness during your meditation, opt out of fluorescent lighting and utilize natural light.
Draw back your blinds and your curtains, and let the light pour into your room.
2) Minimal Furniture
A meditation room is supposed to be a place to relax from the clutter of your own mind and from the demands of the outside world.
Opt out of flashy furniture like a couch or distracting paintings.
Practice the element of minimalism in designing your room.
3) Pillows or Mats
These are more practical when you’re already doing your meditation or yoga. They’re also more comfortable to stay in.
Brett Larkin, yoga and meditation teacher, had initial difficulty meditating as she would experience pins and needles in her calves when sitting too long.
In an interview, she said, “My breakthrough came when I went on a retreat and the teacher showed me how to prop myself up with cushions and blocks so I could sit with proper elevation and support. Because we were meditating all the time on that 14-day retreat and I was finally sitting in correct alignment thanks to the props, my spine got stronger.”
4) Traces of Nature
To promote the natural feeling of a meditation area, try incorporating some bits of nature into your space.
Add some plants such as fortune plants, or even cacti to make you feel closer to nature.
Add flowers to give color and life to the room without creating visible distractions.
5) Soundtrack of Soothing Music
If you prefer some music as you practice mindfulness, prepare a soundtrack of soothing sounds to play whenever you’re in the room.
This can be sounds of nature like water flowing or leaves rustling, or soft classical music.
6) Essential Oils
The smell of essential oils can have a calming effect.
Place in one or two plants, or light up some incense sticks in the room to get the most out of this soothing element.
7) Windows or Ceiling Fans
Ventilation is still necessary while you’re meditating.
If you’re practicing yoga, it can get a bit stuffy as you perspire.
Keep the windows open, or install ceiling fans in your meditation room.
Windows looking out at the beautiful sky can also help you in your meditation.
Dean Sluyter, natural meditation expert and author of the new book Natural Meditation: A Guide to Effortless Meditative Practice, advises on the use of the Tibetan technique called sky-gazing. “Look out the window, relax your whole body, and let your gaze expand into the spaciousness of the sky.”
Light one or two of them up – just not too many, to avoid overdoing it – to fill your room with a calming scent.
If you’re low on natural light, this canbe a good alternative.
9) Peaceful Images or Designs
You can still decorate your room without going for a flashy interior.
Get peaceful images or designs on the walls.
These can be paintings of nature or a few religious symbols that have significant meaning to you.
10) Blinds or Screens
When the light outside glaring too much, pull down your blinds or screens, instead of closing the window entirely.
Opt for blinds made of bamboo to retain a natural look and great minimalist aesthetic.
This final item is optional, but if you truly want to imbibe the foundations of meditation rooted in Buddhism, then you can set up an altar in your meditation room.
However, you are also free to add in other religious symbols with which you identify.