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Why the heck should I bother with Meditation?

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I used to be a busy-body, corporate work horse who thought yoga was just stretching and meditation was stupid. Man, oh man, has my perspective changed.

I had tried meditation a few times. It was always guided. And, it had been in a classroom at a desk. No wonder I didn’t care for it!

Now, I understand how important meditation can be for grounding myself and alleviating stress. That’s what it does for me personally, but there are so many more wonderful things meditation can do for you, and even those around you.

Meditation can take many forms. The two main things are always the same: Focus on your breath and find a comfortable seat. Anything else is dealer’s choice (and YOU are the dealer, my sweet friend).

If your preference is for guided meditation, there are lots of wonderful ones out there. You can get books on it from the library, audio books, or even find them on YouTube.

Another idea is to come up with a mantra. Keep it short and sweet. And, definitely keep it positive! An example of a poor mantra is, “I want to lose weight.” A better mantra is, “I want to be healthy.” It can be any word or phrase you like. Usually a mantra is repeated silently over and over in your mind as you focus on your breath. Some people swear by repeating the mantra 108 times, which is the number of beads on a mala bead necklace if you have one handy. None of these are rules except keep it loving and positive.

Others enjoy just sitting in silence and focusing on the breath. You can have silence or music on in the background. I like to find YouTube recordings of sound healing bowls or different frequencies for opening up chakras like 528HZ, for example. Maybe just some sounds of a waterfall or fountain, birds chirping or rain is relaxing to you.

Once you choose the type of meditation you’d like to try for the day, commit to it. Take a comfortable seat or even lie down. The main objective is to find a pose of least discomfort that you can stay in for a long period of time.  As we sit in meditation, our minds will wander to our to do lists, what to cook for dinner and lingering resentment at the driver that cut you off earlier. That’s ok. Let those thoughts or feelings wash over you, feel them fully, then let them go and get back to focusing on your breath.

Any meditation practice is a good meditation practice. Start small. Maybe 2-5 minutes a day. Set a timer if you need to be some place. Otherwise, stay for however long you can maintain it and stay focused. Usually it’s best to meditate right after you first wake up for the day or right before bedtime. Whenever you find the time, is the right time, so use it.

Adding a meditation practice to your week is going to change you. It’s going to help you remember to surrender instead of react to harsh situations that will arise. It will lower your anxiety, help you fight depression, possibly lower your blood pressure, and it even might help you have a longer attention span.  Mostly, it will teach you the secret of mindfulness, of being present and letting things be just be as they are. I read somewhere that The Beatles song “Let it Be” was really about meditation and that makes a lot of sense to me.

If you’re able to meditate in a group setting, especially in a large group, it has been proven in over 50 different demonstration projects and 23 peer reviewed studies that meditation consistently shows positive effects and has an immediate reduction in crime, warfare and terrorism by more than 70%!*

I urge you to try meditation today! You have nothing to lose and everything to gain.

Here are some of my favorite references on meditation:

Thich Nhat Hanh – he has lots of books as well as meditations you can find on YouTube

Dr. Joe Dispenza – You are the Placebo and Becoming Supernatural (books). You can also get audio of his meditations. I found them all at the library.

Meditation for the Love of it: Enjoying your own Deepest Experience by Sally Kempton (also found at my library).

The Karuna Tree – a YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCzR4-lTDa3olaQY_9p9ZPgA

*Statistics from Becoming Supernatural by Dr. Joe Dispenza

#meditation #worldmeditationday #pranamanana

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