As the zen saying goes, “You should sit in meditation for 20 minutes a day. Unless you’re too busy, then you should sit for an hour.” Easier said than done, right? To clear the mind and prepare for true meditation, you must forget about your list of chores, put away tomorrow’s anxieties, and try not to dwell on that embarrassing thing you did 12 years ago at your best friend’s party.
If you find yourself struggling to let go of your thoughts, consider lighting up before clearing out. Cannabis has a knack for focusing the mind when combined with meditation techniques, and with our guide below, it won’t be long before meditation is a simple part of your daily health regime. With time, patience, and perseverance, you’ll go from meditative newbie to a full-blown relaxation expert.
Why Meditation Matters
Negative thinking, or even overthinking, is a bad habit like any other. Just as one can get caught up in a cycle of biting nails or procrastination, it is also possible to develop patterns of thinking that are unhealthy. These states of mind can create heightened levels of stress, anxiety, and depression that have very real negative effects on not just mental, but also physical, health.
For the negative thinker, the best way to diminish those perceptions is by stopping undesirable trains of thought the moment you realize you’re having them, and replacing those thoughts with mindfulness and peaceful stillness. But how do we get to that place of stillness? It can be rather difficult to relax the mind, especially in today’s hyper-stimulating world.
Cannabis, however, is a wonderful vehicle to mentally get you where you need to go—our brains are full of cannabinoid receptors in areas of the brain related to behavior, thought, and mood. When cannabinoids in cannabis interact with these receptors, they produce euphoric, relaxing effects.
That said, some may also find they experience an increase of anxiety after consuming certain strains or with certain cannabinoid ratios. It’s best to find the ideal strain for you on a personal basis, before embarking on your meditative journey.
It is equally important to explore differing meditation methods as it is different strains. From gazing meditation to deep breathing to body mindfulness, there are so many paths of meditation that can help clear your head. So put emphasis on your mental health by embracing meditation, cannabis, and the healing power of a clear and focused mind.
How to Pair Gazing Meditation and Cannabis
The purpose of “gazing” meditation is to sharpen your focus, promote clarity, and aid concentration by settling your eyes on a fixed object. The focus on the object allows for the dismissal of wandering thoughts and thinking patterns, ultimately clearing a path for a calmer mind.
The object can be anything of your choosing, but we recommend you opt for something soothing to view—common choices are the flame of a candle, a mandala, or ripples in a body of water.
Take your practice to the next level by reaching for a focus promoting strain such as the buzzy hybrid Double Dream. This deeply relaxing strain will invigorate the mind while maintaining mental clarity and full-body tranquility.
Step One: Once you have chosen your object, sit across from it in a comfortable position (consider sitting cross-legged on a pillow).
Step Two: With the object in clear sight before you, allow your focus to settle on the details: the way the candle flame flickers and moves as though it breathes; the intricate patterns and colors of the mandala; how the sunlight glints off the rippling waves.
Step Three: Do not strain your gaze—simply allow the image to wash over you as you rest your gaze upon it. Allow your attention to be focused entirely on the object. As you gaze gently, allow your breathing to soften, deepen, and gradually move towards viewing the object without contextualizing it in thought at all.
Final Step: Gaze until your mind is still and all that stirs is the flame of your candle and the rise and fall of your chest.
How to Pair Deep Breathing and Cannabis
Deep breathing is the cornerstone of meditation. By controlling our breath, we can control not only our thoughts, but even the strongest and most volatile of emotions. It is the simplest way to gain control of a runaway mind.
Inhale an uplifting strain to capitalize on those meditative feelings of euphoria—we recommend the bright sativa Chocolope for its elating effects and ability to crush anxiety.
Step One: Sit in a comfortable position of your choosing with your chest upright and back straight. Close your eyes and relax your shoulders. Allow the tension to melt out of your body.
Step Two: Observe your breath in this relaxed state. Then, take a long, deep breath in through the nose, filling up your whole abdomen and chest with air.
Step Three: Once you have inhaled fully, pause at the top for just a beat or two and then