How Long Should You Meditate Each Day?

Through the years, the question on how long you should meditate each day has been raised numerous times, by numerous people for numerous reasons.

There are those who wish to meditate for a long time but can’t find the time due to their busy schedule and there are thosehow long should you meditate each day who have a lot of free time and have been trying to experiment with a number of time periods but have not really been able to establish the right time, just to name a few.

Beginners of the practice also desire to know how much time they should set aside for it so that they get to have a smooth flow throughout the sessions and be able to gain valuable benefits out of it.

And while people seek to know how much is enough for them, there is the worry of investing their time into meditation and failing to see progress or getting to achieve their goals they have set for themselves at the end of it all.

As human beings, we all have different body and brain chemistry and we react different to various things, including meditation. This means that there are people who are going to get good results by spending a long time and those who will also benefit from a short time meditation session.

A time period of about 30 to 40 minutes a day has worked for some and failed for others, just like a period of 5 to 10 minutes has.

So it is always essential that you find a time frame that works well for you based on what your mind and body can handle not to mention your daily schedule.

No One Size Fits All Approach in Meditation

When it comes to meditation, everyone is looking to get their own set of results which could be different from others.

Some people are looking to bring down stress and depression, others are fighting anxiety, others want to become more mindful while others look to generate more kindness and compassion within themselves.

The list on the benefits we are looking for in meditation is endless, just as there are various styles of meditation.

At the same time, our lives are also very different in terms of the activities we get involved in on a daily basis. Some have office jobs and businesses to run and have to wake up very early in the morning and come back home late at night.

There are those who are fortunate to have stay at home jobs that may not necessarily need them to wake up early. But they still have a lot on their plate from when they wake up to when they sleep.

In general, everyone is busy in their own different ways so the way we plan our day and spare time for meditation is definitely going to be different.

A good number of people can spare a few minutes in the morning, another pocket of people may be free around 10am, while others get their alone time during lunch hours, early evenings, when they leave work or even late night hours when almost everyone is asleep.

The time we are also able to spare to meditate differs and will mostly range from 5 minutes to an hour or more.

On the same breath, our cultures and personalities vary from one person to another. And this goes on to show how we should expect different results out of the practice based on all the differences.

There will be people who will be able to see results in a few days or weeks, or months or even years of being consistent with meditation.

What Really Matters in Meditation – The 2 Key Factors!

With all the differences, research and studies on meditation have revealed the 2 most important factors that we need to keep into consideration as far as meditation is concerned.

They are value of the session and the frequency of meditating.

While many people put most their concern on the duration of their meditation sessions, studies have shown that minding about the value you get out of every session you immerse yourself into as well as how often you meditate counts for more than the length of your sessions.

Andy Puddicombe, a meditation and mindfulness expert from Headspace says that meditating every day of the week for about 10 minutes per session may be more beneficial than doing it for only one day of the week for 70 minutes (1).

There is this notion that has been taken up by many people about meditation that stems from watching too many Buddhist monks movies or working with many of their other resources.

They think that meditating for hours in nature based environment like next to waterfalls or on top of the mountains is the best way to go about it.

Sure, the feeling of doing that could be pretty surreal going by the environment but there is more to it than meets the eye.

Many of the Buddhists monks are able to sit for long hours and still get the full value out of their sessions. This comes from years and years of training to still for long hours and having the deep connection with the practice from when they begin to the end.

They began with a few minutes a day and in good time they increased the length when they felt it was becoming too easy for them. A few years down the line, they had built the mental and physical stamina to meditate for hours.

The truth is, the concept of doing meditation for a manageable amount of time and doing it often is applied by all people and institutions that value the tradition of meditation, including the Buddhist meditation.

This practice not only helps us train ourselves over time to become more accustomed to long periods of meditation that we always benefit from, but also helps us make meditation part our lives and the benefits of it become more natural unlike those who meditate for hours once in a while and forget about it once their sessions are over.

Finding Your Meditation Zone

That being said, it is important that you find your own length of meditation in terms of time that you know will help you gain value throughout the session and make you look forward to the next session, naturally.

In the grand scheme of things, the main aim of meditation is to transform your life into a happier more peaceful experience.

It makes you do everything better.

And you get this by giving your all into the sessions in a way that you won’t sleep or feel sleepy or become bored and wish for the session to end sooner so that you can go do other things you know are waiting for you.

You want to find a sweet spot that makes the sessions interesting in a way that you get out of them feeling positively different.

This is why you need to find your own time that works well for you and doesn’t affect other areas of your life.

If you are a beginner, you should start with 5 minutes to 10 minutes, no matter the time of the day you are free. This will help you assess yourself.

If it feels like it is too much, you can drop that to 1 or 2 minutes.

Remember, the key things are quality and frequency.

After a while, when you feel too comfortable, you can step things up to the next level. If you can keep up with the next level, go ahead and work with that.

If you can’t go back to the previous time frame and get used to it completely.

The idea is not to stress yourself too much and weigh yourself out but then not to be too comfortable that you fail to make progress.

Your target should be getting the most value out of your sessions, no matter how long they are, and this take time and patience to make it work.

Think about a seed that a farmer sows into a field and hopes it becomes a plant that has healthy fruits. The seed has to take time to break the ground, when it is strong enough, so that it can send out shoots and roots.

After that, more time is needed before the leaves, the flowers and the fruits can come out.

The same case applies to meditation.

If you have been meditating on a regular basis for some time, you should feel free to try out various time frames around what you have been working with.

If your time is 20 to 30 minutes and you feel 30 minutes is a bit too challenging for you, yet 20 minutes is too comfortable for you, then your right spot is 25 minutes.

It is neither too easy nor too challenging.

However, if you want to go against the grain and shoot for long hours from the get go, you want to get guidance and help from qualified meditation teachers. This isn’t an easy thing and could really make your life difficult if you don’t know how to go about it wisely. You can also get into a meditation retreat with experts in the area to help you through.

12 thoughts on “How Long Should You Meditate Each Day?

  1. Rodarrick

    Yeah! I couldn’t agree with you less on this topic that you have e plainer here. First and for most, I agree that everyone’s needs differs and our needs is essential to the amount of time we spent meditating. To be honest, the two factors you highlighted are great and really spot on. Thanks for sharing this with us all. I learnt well

    Reply
    1. Dave

      You are always welcome RoDarrick, 

      We appreciate your feedback.

      Have a fantastic day!

      Reply
  2. Fred

    When I was younger, my parents took me to do transcendental meditation. It is been many years since I have meditated and I have started back up earlier this year. My biggest downfall has been to be consistent with my meditation. Even though I have lacked consistency, I have noticed the way I feel throughout the day when I do get it in. I am currently using Calm app on my phone which has helped me with my consistency issue. What is your opinion about these apps? Are they worth the money?  

    Reply
    1. Dave

      Hallo there Fred, 

      Thanks for stopping by and for sharing your thoughts.

      Meditation apps are a good resource to have within your self improvement shelf and are worth it when you have a good one like the Calm app.

      Cheers.

      Reply
  3. Linda Cooper

    Good article, hopefully it will encourage more people to give meditation a try.

    Many doctors now suggest meditation to help those dealing with various challenging health issues. I personally know that this can be very helpful at such a time. 

    I like the way you say each person is different and needs to find what is the best amount of time for them. I have seen too many articles that put people of with an insistence of a lengthy time to meditate and telling them how they should be feeling afterwards.

    Thank you for a helpful and informative article. I will share on social media for others to enjoy.

    Reply
    1. Dave

      You are welcome Linda,

      Thanks for dropping and for the share.

      We really appreciate.

      Have a lovely day.

      Reply
  4. bella

    Meditating is essential to our personal growth and it is something that we all must engage in daily to ensure we keep rediscovering new things about ourself. However, the question of the best time to do it for, is another thing entirely.
    i agree with your summation that  meditation is strictly based on our individual needs. We need to consider the two factors you pointed out too. They are essential also. Thanks for sharing

    Reply
    1. Dave

      You are always welcome Bella, 

      Nice having you here.

      Have a wonderful day!

      Reply
  5. MissusB

    From time to time, I practice  meditation either with candles or calming aromas because it helps me better to focus. To be honest, I find it hard not to think of anything that’s why I do the other way which is being more mindful of what goes through my mind. I just simply let my mind goes wherever it wants. Setting the mood helps me to channel peace and quiet. I usually end up with waters – brooks, streams, river, etc.

    Since meditation is not part of my everyday routine, my body can only go for about 5-10 minutes. Longer than that and my mind would suddenly show people, or work so I try to refocus before ending my meditation for the day. It actually calms me. I don’t get easily mad about something and it definitely helps me think of good things all throughout the day. Thanks for sharing this.  I really hope I can make longer meditation, but I guess it has to be a part of my daily routine to be able to do so.    

    Reply
    1. Dave

      Hallo there, 

      Thanks for stopping by and for sharing your thoughts and experience with us.

      We really appreciate them.

      Don’t worry at the moment about increasing the length of your meditation, if it is proving to be difficult. 

      Just keep going with the 5 to 10 minutes and in good time you will find it easy to do it much longer.

      Patience, quality and frequency of meditation will get you there.

      Otherwise keep meditating. 🙂

      Cheers.

      Reply
  6. Karen

    Thank you for your article on meditation.

    This is something that I have recently become interested in and you have given a good over view of how long to meditate and making the right time to suit your schedule.

    This will be very helpful as you have gone into things in quite a bit of depth. I have recently read a book about planning your mornings to create a better day for yourself and meditation is a big part of that. Your article has been helpful in working out what might be the best agenda for me. Initially I thought it seemed strange to meditate early in the morning but I see that you are right about having the best value and the frequency, so really, for me the best time of the day is actually first thing in the morning.

    Do you think that even 5 minutes at a time would work ok if it was a regular session each morning?

    Reply
    1. Improve Your Brain Power Team Post author

      Sure Karen,

      5 minutes will definitely work. Just try and see.

      Please be sure to let us know how it goes for you.

      We will be waiting for your feedback.

      Reply

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