How to Supercharge Your Transformation
You may already be seeing the benefits of practicing “awareness” in your daily life. If not, have no fear! In this lesson, I will let you in on the next step you must take if you want to move toward happiness: meditation.
Before you say, “Here we go again,” I want you to know something: I used to hate meditation.
I felt like I couldn’t do it, and every time I tried, I would just end up frustrated because my mind would not shut up!
I can’t tell you how many times I “tried” to start meditating and quickly gave it up.
If you are like me, then you probably already know that meditation has countless benefits, from stress reduction and lower blood pressure to an increased sense of joy and peace.
But regardless of how many times you read about how great it is, you just can’t seem to do it.
Meditation for Dummies
The truth is, if you have failed at meditation, it is not your fault. You just have not been given the right guidance on how to get started.
So, to help get you going, here are my three keys to meditation (when you hate to meditate).
Lower your expectations. I used to think that the whole point of meditation was to quiet my mind, so if I could not get it to be still, I was doing it wrong. This is absolutely false. The goal of meditation is to practice the skill of coming back to the present. That means that no matter how talkative your mind is, as long as you notice that your mind is talking and you bring your attention back to the present moment, then you are succeeding.
Start small. Another problem when starting meditation is if you think that “to get the benefits,” you must meditate for 10, 20, or 60 minutes. This is also false! Remember the old advice to stop and take ten slow breaths? That is a form of meditation and only takes maybe 1-2 minutes at most! The point is, don’t think that there is a time target. If you have never meditated before, see if you can focus on your breath for one minute. If you start to wander, notice that you wandered and then listen to your breath again. It’s really that simple.
Get help. This is a game-changer. There are many options out there for teaching you how to meditate, but the one that did it for me was Headspace. This is an app that leads you through guided meditation, and over time, it guides you less and less. It does a brilliant job of building up your meditation skill, and I cannot recommend it enough!
Why I Meditate
As I mentioned, I used to struggle with meditation, but now that I have built my skill, it truly has been a foundational component of my personal transformation. Why?
A sense of calm. On days that I meditate (I try to get it in daily, but life happens!), I have a sense of calm that stays with me. “Problems” still come up, but they don’t affect me as much, and I am able to solve them with better creativity and clarity.
Better interactions. When I meditate, I have more distance between myself and my emotional reactions. That means when I need to have a difficult conversation with someone (spouse, coworker, child, etc.), I am much more effective in my communication because I’m not caught up in my emotions.
More joy. The best part about meditation is the general sense of joy that I have. I have never in my life found so much joy in everyday life than I do when I meditate. From the sounds of the birds to the shapes of the clouds and the funny way people are, I am able to experience everything to a much higher degree. It’s fun!
So, if you are on the fence about meditation, I hope this gives you enough guidance and reasons to give it another try.
Tomorrow, I will show you why the skills you learn in meditation will become the foundation for your transformation. Until then, see if you can meditate for just one minute today!
To Your Happiness,
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