Put Meditation for Fibromyalgia In Your Pain Flare Toolbox

Meditation for Fibromyalgia
I’ve seen so many Tweets lately from Fibro Warriors who are looking for ways to manage their overwhelming very bad pain days. Most of us are on a perpetual quest to find whatever it takes to manage our severe pain. Meditation for Fibromyalgia is just one tool in my pain flare tool box.

How can meditation for Fibromyalgia help?

Meditation is a practice where you can train your mind to reach a state of consciousness, a state of relaxation, even sleep. You don’t need any tools to do it. Just a quiet corner of your home, or even on your bed. You can meditate at work or on the train to work, anywhere really. It’s easy to do and easy to learn. If you’ve got kids at home, teach them as you learn too!

If you have done yoga before, you may recall how you felt after the final relaxation portion of your class. Completely relaxed, worry free and ready for a good nap! Meditation can be like that for you too. From the comfort of your home, in your pajamas.

The wonderful thing about meditation is that you really can ease your pain by doing it. If you can find at least 15 minutes of quiet time, you can meditate. Personally, I find the most success with meditation for Fibromyalgia when I can sleep after meditating.

When pain is at it’s worst, meditation can sometimes be one of the only ways to help endure a pain flare. For me, pain flare days mean that my usual opioid sometimes doesn’t help at all. Meditation can help get you to sleep. It can also help you calm yourself down from the panic attack-like feeling that the pain is never going to stop. Something many Fibro Warriors will completely understand, having experience that themselves.

What kind of meditation is best for chronic pain?

There are three types of meditation for Fibromyalgia that I have personally tried and recommend.

    1. I find that guided meditation is best. Guided meditation is when someone else talks you through the process. Instead of concentrating only on your breathing, or saying a mantra to yourself, someone else tells you what to do and what to think about to reach maximum relaxation. For whatever your goal or reason you are seeking. For us Spoonies, it’s either sleep or pain relief.
    2. Another type of meditation that I highly recommend trying out is those that use Alpha, Theta or Delta brain waves, something each of us have naturally. These types of meditation are usually used for sleep (Delta), deep relaxation and hypnosis (Theta) or to become more creative, to reduce stress and heal (Alpha). It is the tone or wave length level here that is key. Delta waves are the slowest. They allow you to find sleep easier. While Alpha waves are a bit faster than both Delta and Theta.
    3. Metta Meditation (also known as Mindfulness Meditation or Loving Kindness Meditation) is the reciting of words and phrases (in your mind or by voice) that evoke a “boundless warm-hearted feeling.” This kind of meditation is done with the purpose of connecting to the intention of wishing yourself, or others, loving kindness.How to be Sick, by Toni BernhardToni Bernhard, author of “How to be Sick, often speaks of Loving Kindness. She’s a true inspiration for me. You can follow her on Twitter and her blog on Psychology Today.If you practice Metta meditation, it is something you should do daily. Even several times a day. Think of it as positive thought reinforcement, a way to keep negative thoughts from your mind.In Loving Kindness meditations, one recites a mantra, words of personal meaning. You can create your own, or use some of the below.

      May I be happy.
      May I be well.
      May I be safe.
      May I be peaceful and at ease.

      Metta shared by Lama Surya Das
      May all beings be happy, content and fulfilled, May all beings be healed and whole,
      May all beings have whatever they want and need May all beings be protected from harm and free from fear,
      May all beings be awakened, liberated and free,
      May there be peace on earth and the entire universe.

      And here’s one in audio form from the Theravadin tradition. It’s too long to post, but there is a full translation provided on the page.

Once you have said the Loving Kindness mantra for yourself, you repeat it for others. Namely someone you love, someone you admire or look up to, someone you have challenges with, or someone you know needs some loving kindness in their life. You can also wish it for all beings on Earth.

My personal favorite is something Melissa West, a long-time friend and former yoga instructor of mine (yoga is not something I’m able to do much just now) that gives free online yoga videos. She even has some specific Yoga for Fibromyalgia recommendations. If interested in yoga, consider chair yoga for chronic pain.

The mantra Melissa taught me goes like this:

May you be free from inner and outer harm,
May you be peaceful and happy,
May you be healthy and strong,
May you take care of yourself joyfully.

As I was not raised with religion, Loving Kindness meditation really resonates with me. While I may not practice religion, I am still a very spiritual person.

Where can I find guided meditations online?

YouTube is an excellent source to find free guided meditations. Your success will vary depending on how experienced the person giving the meditation is. You’ll want to search “guided meditation for pain” or “guided meditation for sleep”. With the quotes – which will tell the search engine (in YouTube, Google, Bing, etc) to look for those specific words in that specific order.

Where can I find brain wave meditation online?

For the brain wave type of meditations, literally search “Alpha Theta Delta brain wave videos” to find relevant sites with videos (or downloadable MP3s, if you wish). You might also try “Delta meditation music”.

Where can I find Metta Meditation online?

Search terms to use for Metta meditations is just that, “Metta meditation” or “Free Metta meditation”. If the site looks really bland with only text, it may be a low quality site with dubious links and resources. So try to find something that seems well managed and frequently updated.

Conclusion

The next time you have a nasty pain flare, consider meditation for Fibromyalgia to add to your toolbox of pampering. If you can but squeeze 15 minutes per day for whatever type of meditation I mentioned that resonates with you, it very well may be “that thing” that helps you endure bad pain days and pain flares.

Here’s a few helpful resources for Guided Meditation and Delta Meditation

SoundsTrue.com – an American site, but I have purchased and downloaded digital items from here successfully. Here’s a direct link to their guided meditation selections.

WithInsight.com – is SoundsTrue’s sister free meditation resource site. Tons of helpful information here.

Free Guided Meditation Downloads

YouTube Search on Free Guided Meditations for Pain

Sunshine and smiles, Shannon

Citations:
Loving-Kindness Meditation (Metta)

Image from Istock.com

Shannon Hutcheson

Shannon is a day dreamer, suffers with boughts of hilarity, forced to herd several cats, plays MMORPGs to keep her sanity, and reads tons of books. All to keep her mind busy - no negative thoughts!
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