Meditation has a different meaning for everyone. Generally, it is a discipline by which one ceases to think as usual and attempts to reach a deep level of relaxation or awareness. To many, meditation is simply a peaceful act of quiet reflection. Whatever meditation means to you, it is important to have a special, secluded place where you meditate. A meditation room creates an environment in which it is easy to relax our bodies and minds. The perfect meditation room should reflect who you are. In designing the area, you should consider all the things you hold dear – your deepest dreams, passions and feelings. It should be a place to relax, renew and re-energize yourself. A place where you can breathe, think, feel, or just be. You can even think of it as the threshold between the spiritual and physical worlds.

While having your own meditation room may seem like a luxury, it is actually quite easy and affordable to create one of your own. A meditation room is meant to be a serene and calm, to serve as your own personal place of peace and tranquility. Although most of us can’t afford to devote an entire room to meditation, it is quite possible to create a wonderful area to de-stress without a feng shui expert or interior designer. If you have an extra room, great! If not, any unused space where you are least likely to be disturbed will do. Simply choose from a balcony, garage, tool shed, attic, walk-in closet, basement, sunroom, or a quiet corner of your house. Even a chair on your porch or under a tree in your back yard will do. Just remember to keep in mind that the area should be quiet, clean, comfortable and clutter free. Once you designate an area, you are ready to start!

Here are 10 cheap and easy tips to design your very own, in-home meditation room:

1. Pick your favorite chair in the house and use it as your meditation chair exclusively. If you prefer to meditate on the floor, find a big, comfy cushion, a bench, or whatever you’d prefer to sit on. Place it in your meditation room. If your room has a window, seat yourself facing the window. If not, place your seat to your liking. The important thing to remember is that once you find a comfortable place for seating, you should keep it. While changing things around once in a while is fine, keeping the area familiar will keep the atmosphere relaxed, and keep you coming back.

2. Bring some of your favorite items into the space. Some good ideas might be photos of loved ones, a vase with fresh flowers or a favorite book. Anything is fine as long as it is not irritating to the eye and does not disturb your sense of peace.

3. Keep the area as empty and free of useless stuff as possible. It is definitely fine to have some of your favorite objects around, but clutter is never, ever calming.

4. If you are using a small corner of your home, putting up folding screens is a good way to make the space more personal. If you don’t wish to invest in a screen, try a curtain or a sheet when you need privacy.

5. Lighting is important. While many prefer to use candles, some like to use a dim lamp. The light in your meditation room must not be bright unless it is natural sunlight. Use candles, a desk lamp, or even a floor lamp with a dimmer to create a lighting effect which is not dark enough to make you sleepy, yet dim enough to make you feel at ease.

6. Many people prefer to use items such as scented candles, incense or scented oils for aromatherapy while they meditate. I recommend these items for not only those who love aromatherapy but those who have trouble relaxing their minds. Concentrating on a scent is a good technique to distract your mind and find that place of inner calm.

7. Stereo systems and CD players are also great to have in your meditation room. There are many tapes and CDs created especially with the purpose of meditation in mind. There are various options to consider, such as rhythmic music, sounds of nature, chants or hymns. These sounds are not only designed to help you to relax, they’re also great for drowning out the goings on of the rest of your household.

8. Do not, under any circumstances, bring your cell phone or laptop into your meditation space. The point is to disconnect and reflect, not to stay connected.

9. Keep some paper and pencils or pens around to write down whatever ideas may come to you while you are meditating. Oftentimes meditation can be an almost dreamlike state, making our ideas and reflections difficult to remember when we return to our regular state. Keeping some writing utensils handy will help you record your thoughts on the spot.

10. Keep the four elements of the Earth in mind when designing your space. Fire, water, earth and air are the four elements. They are just as essential to your space as they are to life. Air is already in your meditation room, so you need not worry about that. Candles will provide fire, and a cup of water can take care of the water aspect. For earth, consider a plant instead of a vase of flowers to bring life into your meditation room.

While creating your meditation room, remember to use your intuition. Your meditation room is your own sacred place. When you feel the worries of your day melt away as you enter your new space, you have successfully designed a meditation room of your own.