How Meditation Changed My Life...For REAL!
Meditation has changed my life. And no, that is not some hyperbolic statement akin to how everything is “amazing” these days, meditation is actually amazing. I began meditating in college, I was fortunate enough to be part of a program where it was built into our curriculum. Of course, being a college kid and being on my own for the first time in my twenties, I wasn’t as diligent with meditation as I am now, but what got me to be an every day, twice a day meditator is connecting the dots between “Today was a bad day, yesterday was a good day. What was the difference between yesterday and today?” and for me the through-line was meditation. When I began my day with meditation, it’s not that bad things wouldn’t cross my path because they did and they always will, however my response to was different because of my meditation practice.
The science behind the benefits of meditating is clear. Meditation helps you sleep better, have a stronger memory, reduces feelings of depression, shrinks your amygdala (which is the place in your brain where flight or fight is born, as well as fear and anxiety) oh and the cherry on top, a stronger sex drive. So if we know all of this to be true, then why isn’t every person on the planet meditating? I can tell you from my experience whenever I tell people that I'm a meditator and meditation teacher, I am first met with oohs and aahs, which are quickly followed by “I’d love to meditate, but I don’t know how and I don’t have the time.” Well, you may not know me personally, but trust me when I say, my nickname of ‘motormouth’ as a child has not been outgrown since I’ve reached adulthood. I am a chatty Cathy and have two speeds - fast and faster. On top of that, I’m a small business owner, have a significant other, three cats and a very needy family. I’m sharing all of this with you, to let you know that if I can stop talking and sit still for a handful of minutes every day, then I truly believe anyone can and so much easier than you think.
Meditation is like the book ‘Green Eggs & Ham’, you can do it on a train, in a plane, on a bus, you can do it anywhere, anyway, the only two hard and fast rules I have with meditation, is that you create a practice that you thoroughly enjoy and look forward to and that you’re consistent with it. Let me put it to you this way, if you’re trying to lose weight or get in shape, and you commit yourself to five workouts a week that you find fun, you’re going to stick with it and see the results. Meditation is no different. This is why we created a Meditation Box. We wanted to offer you something beautiful to jump-start or deepen your practice. If you’re just starting to meditate, one of the best things to do for yourself is create structure around your practice, for example, every morning before you look at your phone, respond to an email, make a kid’s lunch, open your meditation box, pull out a crystal that you love, light your candle and listen to a guided meditation for 10 minutes. And if you can’t do 10 minutes, do 5, and if you can’t do 5 do 3 because the bottom line is, giving yourself 3 minutes of meditation that you truly enjoy will not only make your day better, but it will lead you to somehow finding a consistent 20-minute daily meditation practice, but you don’t need to start there. Enjoy yourself, start small and build from there.
On the flip side, if you’re an avid meditator, it’s wildly important to keep your meditations fresh. So adding crystals, sound bowls or mantras will only help deepen your practice. Think of it like this, if you take the same route to work every day, you start to zone out, get in your head and miss the details, but the morning you choose to take a different route, all of a sudden you become present and in the moment, not in your head thinking about the millions of things you need to get done, you are in the present moment and that is what meditation is all about.
To begin find a spot where you can comfortably sit or lie down and simply have one point of awareness, your point of awareness can be a guided meditation, a mantra such as “I am” or “I release” or simply watching the sunset and of course while you have your point of awareness don’t stop breathing. If you’re “doing” this then you are meditating. Of course, meditation can be done in many different ways but if we’re really boiling it down to its simplest form, it is breathing and having a point of awareness. Spoiler alert, you will have thoughts and that’s okay. When you notice yourself having a thought, do just that. Notice it, let it go and bring yourself back to your point of awareness. If you’re new to the meditation game I always suggest to go on youtube and look up guided meditations, it takes the pressure off of you to “know what you’re doing.” This way you can lie back, breathe and listen. Follow the link at the bottom of this article to a downloadable list of my top ten guided meditations from YouTube. Now all you have to do is make the time and know the rest is taken care of.
One of my favorite teachers Mariam Williamson once told me you can not have a neutral thought and this is why it is so important to meditate first thing in the morning because in that meditation you are scientifically changing the neuro pathways to not fall back on fear and anxiety, but rather start your day setting sail in the direction of peace and positivity. This is truly what made me an avid meditator (and I’m hoping it will help you as well) Understanding that crappy things will still come down the pike, but meditation changed by the response to those things in a very deep and powerful way. Simply put, we can’t change everything that will happen in the world but we can change the way we respond to them and meditation is the easiest, more foolproof way to do that.
10 Meditation Videos To Get You Started On Your Journey
1. Calm Guided Meditation to Gain Abundance, Love & Happiness | Bob Proctor
2. Guided Meditation for Mornings: Clear Negativity Open Chakras Awaken Vital Energy After Sleep
3. 10 Minute Chakra Balance Guided Meditation for Positive Energy
4. Louise Hay’s Morning Meditation
5. Spoken Meditation: Your Ideal Life, The Law Of Attraction: Goal Setting Visualization
6. Evening Meditation: 10 Minutes - Positive Affirmations to close your day.
7. Marianne Williamson - Morning Meditation - Meditations for a Miraculous Life
8. Abraham Hicks - Good Morning Meditation 2019-2020
9. Morning Meditation Ritual
10. Living Carefree - A Meditation with Deepak Chopra