The Purpose of Guided Meditation
Guided meditation can take an individual from chaos and stress to a place of quiet, peacefulness and serenity. Guided meditation uses imagery, music or sounds of nature to bring calm and peace to the body and mind.
The process requires attention to the body and mind as a guide helps the individual move from stress and tension to relaxation.
Guided Meditation in Rehab
In rehab programs, the therapist or guide who leads the activity sets the mood by helping individuals prepare for the experience. The session may begin with breathing meditation, where participants lay on the floor on a mat. Next, they close their eyes and breathe slowly — in through the nose and out through the mouth, imagining stress leaving the body with each breath. Breathing exercises and meditative practices can help individuals experiencing withdrawal symptoms cope better.
The guide might introduce body scanning to encourage individuals to get in touch with sensations such as itching, pressure or tightness in their muscles. Body scanning can help individuals focus and become aware of triggers that lead to stress and anxiety. It can also teach individuals to stay in the present moment and exercise self-control.
Guided Meditation Techniques Vary
Guided meditation is not one-size-fits-all. Different guided meditation strategies help individuals focus on areas they want to improve, such as being more thankful. For example, some people may benefit more from gratitude meditation, which considers things they appreciate.
Developing an Attitude of Gratitude
Individuals might find that thinking about how grateful they are for loved ones who support them in their recovery journey. Being mindful of things like having a home to return to may also cause others to feel thankful.
Benefits of Guided Imagery
Meditation guides often use imagery to help individuals find unique mental spaces that bring peace when life is hectic. Participants may imagine being at the beach on a warm day, with a cool breeze blowing and calm ocean waves rolling in and away.
Some people might prefer imagery that highlights a walk through a sunny meadow and stopping to rest by a cool stream under a shade tree. Focusing on such imagery can help alleviate tension and stress and give an individual struggling with substance abuse a sense of control.
Guided Meditation May Reduce the Risk of Relapse
Guided meditation can help reduce the risk of relapse once an individual completes inpatient recovery or an outpatient rehab program. By staying in the present moment, a person with substance abuse disorder can learn to focus on what’s important. It’s simple to practice the strategies learned during the program with videos or apps that guide users through the exercises whenever they need them.