First off.. let me just say that meditation and mindfulness has LITERALLY saved my life, and has healed me from:
- My anxiety disorder
- Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (I had harm OCD)
And all other little stressful, traumatic moments in and far between.
It has also allowed me to find a connection with myself, my body, and love myself for being me.
The journey of loving myself and choosing myself over and over began with meditation and being more mindful.
Meditation has taught me sit back and enjoy the ride whether its painful or joyful.
It teaches you to not react, a “do nothing” approach that allows you to be more peaceful and content with anything life throws at you.
So before you start saying “meditation is for buddhists and hippies” think again.
And chances are, meditation is not at all what you think or what you have believed it to be.
You might think (and I have heard people say this) “Oh my mind is too busy to meditate.” Or “I don’t have time.” “Its too hard and I can never get my thoughts to be quiet enough.”
I used to think this too, until I was desperate to heal, I was so unhappy within myself and nothing else was working.
Then I bought literally 10 + books on meditation and mindfulness because I came across something on the internet saying it helped anxiety and brought peace.
So I was like SIGN ME UP.
I educated myself, read, researched and begin to understand why meditation and mindfulness brought us peace and why it was so beneficial.
And I started to understand what it really meant, and the more I practiced it I begin to see and feel myself heal from the inside out.
Liberation and freedom in my future instead of darkness and fear is just one of the many things I noticed when I started meditating.
My point is.. don’t underestimate meditation and think its a waste of time.
It changed my life and it sure as hell could change yours if you let it.
The most successful and famous people incorporate meditation into their daily lives and make it a habit.
Athletes like Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant (two of the best) use meditation to get themselves into the zone.
Angelina Jolie, Oprah, Eva Mendes, Arnold Schwarzenegger all are famous meditators and there is a solid reason WHY they do it.
First I want to tell you what meditation IS NOT
Meditation is not:
- Having a completely thoughtless and quiet mind
- Concentration and focus to clear the mind
- It is not forcing your thoughts or feelings away
- Or sitting with your legs weirdly crossed repeating “Uhhmmmm” to yourself
- And it’s definitely not only JUST for spiritual people or buddhists, monks, yogi’s, etc.,
Are you thinking “what the hell is it then?” to yourself?
If you are.. keep reading.
What Meditation IS
- Allowing your crazy, busy mind to be, NOT controlling it, just accepting it.
- Taking 5-10 minutes out of your day to sit with yourself and check in. Asking yourself how your doing
- You could incorporate mindfullness into normal daily activities like when your walking, try and stay present, look at the trees and grass, etc., or when your eating, focus on how each bite tastes.
- Letting your thoughts and feelings come and go without judgement or reaction
- Learning how to be more present and how to detach from life’s stresses and worries
- Being aware of your thoughts, feelings, emotions, and NOT reacting to them.
So as you can see, anyone can do it, you don’t have to have a clear mind to be meditation it’s more about finding the peace and calm within yourself and detaching from your mind.
You can see your mind full of negative thoughts but you are not reacting to it and not getting tied in with its drama.
It’s like watching a dramatic movie and you just sit back and not let it effect you.
Thats how Eckhart Tolle describes it in his books and I love that analogy.
You realize that who you are, is the awareness and stillness behind your thoughts and emotions and that your thoughts and emotions are not who you are.
I know that is a really tough concept to grasp but you have to practice and read on it to really see what I mean.
Why You Should Meditate
There is so much scientific evidence proving the benefits of meditation and how it effects us and our brains.
The most common one is Reducing Stress.
I think it reduces stress because you detach from your minds melodrama and just become aware of your emotions.
If you have not noticed already your mind is constantly worrying and thinking about past events, what needs to be done, stressing about little things that don’t even matter and it drives. us. crazy.
We totally miss out on things happening right now because were too busy stressing about the past and future.
Two thing we have 0 control over. So silly.
With meditation you begin to realize that things are only as serious and as bad as your mind makes it out to be.
And like 90% of the time if not more, your mind creates this story that makes things so much worse then they actually are.
Studies have actually shown that meditation reduces the density of brain tissues associated with anxiety and worrying.
Personally when I’m stressed and I meditate, its like taking a time out for myself and turning inwards and checking in which really helps me understand whats going on.
You also Increase Your Sense of Well-Being. You become more aware of the choices you make and what things effect you.
And more aware of what feels good and what doesn’t feel good so you can make more positive choices.
When you practice this everyday, and your taking that time to check in on yourself you also get better at handling your emotions better.
Meditation Improves Your Focus.
The more you learn how to tune in on the present moment and let everything else fade away, your focus becomes more sharp and improves cognition.
I mean sometimes this is hard because everyone has days where there mind is loud and its harder to shut off, but practicing meditation can really help.
The one benefit that I can back up with my own experience is Reducing Anxiety and Depression
BUT in saying that, everyone is so different and what works for me may not work for others. If you are experiencing anxiety or depression its essential you seek help from a medical professional.
Meditation can be done in combination with other forms of treatment or therapy so its important you find what works for you and get help first.
There is no one size fits all when it comes to recovery from a mental illness.
But in my own personal experience, meditation honestly helped me heal from my anxiety and OCD disorder.
I healed by letting my thoughts be as they are, learning to not react to them because that makes it so much worse, and recognizing that they are just thoughts, they cannot harm me and it will pass.
It sounds glamorous and easy but it’s not.
I would feel overwhelmingly strong feelings of anxiety, pain, being so uncomfortable and I would just sit there, ride it out, accept it and just go about my day without acknowledging it.
Definitely something that comes with practice and takes time and patience to see change.
I can honestly say that meditation has also Improved My Sleep.
This goes hand in hand with letting go of stress and anxieties.
I mean raise your hand if your mind doesn’t shut up when your trying to go to sleep!
Thinking about the next day or worrying about something that happened at work, or if you were an insomniac you worry about not getting to sleep. WORST.
Meditation allows you to let go of all of that so you can have a peaceful sleep without tossing and turning.
I mean those nights still come around once in a while, were only human. But meditation can definitely help you wind down and not let those annoying thoughts get to you when your trying to drift off to sleep.
I believe there is more research to be done on meditation and its benefits but it is definitely a really positive habit I have incorporated into my daily life and has helped me achieve more awareness, happiness, I feel less reactive and more calm, motivated and kind.
Also a great form of self-care and love.
If you are really curious about meditation but don’t know where to start. Check out the Headspace app you can get it on your phone!
It’s amazing and what I use every morning to meditate.
The guy has the most soothing voice, he guides you through it all and leaves you tips or things to incorporate into your day.
It has meditations on happiness, gratefulness, sleep, waking up, enjoying the moment, focus, and many more.
Also, there are a couple books that I have read that really helped me understand mindfulness and meditation better and helped my healing process.
I believe there is a book on the Headspace App too, its like a Headspace Guide for Meditation that is really cheap if you don’t want the app.
The first book I ever read when I wanted to take control of my mental health was The Untethered Soul by Michael A. Singer.
Honestly this book was so powerful and explained everything from awareness, breaking free of your minds drama and negative thoughts. It blew my mind and changed the way I viewed the world.
Eckhart Tolle basically changed my life too, he’s been on Oprah a few times.
I’ll link my favourite books at the bottom for you guys to check out.
Meditation is so beneficial to everyone and I truly believe it is the path to peace and true liberation.
Honestly, even if it’s a few minutes a day that can make ALL the difference.
Have a wonderful day babes,