Do you meditate?

I found meditation, or you could say, meditation found me when I volunteered as an English teacher in Cambodia a couple of years ago.

One evening after school me and a friend got back to our apartment when someone on a program said they were attending a temple where monks were leading a meditation. I thought it sounded great and got into the tuk tuk to meet them.

I remember the temple was packed full of people, mixed between tourists and local Khmer people, one of the monks handed me a cushion and me and my friend sat down at the back outside.

At the end of the session, they each gave us a little meditation book, to help us. I still have this book with me today. I kept meditation going on and off over the years.

The country I’ve just returned from, Bali, felt to me like a very sacred and spirtual place and was glad I booked myself a week of meditation and Kundalini yoga, which I had never done before and was excited to delve into.

Kundalini is a form of divine energy that works up from the base of your spine to your remaining chakras, penetrating your crown chakra. This is my understanding of its definition, which will likely change as I explore the magic of Kundalini. During my week on the program, on one occasion I felt quite emotional and tears on my face during an exercise to release negative emotions from our bodies and during other sessions I felt like my body was on vibrate, I felt very energised and in a sense, that the energy was within me. I felt powerful and more ‘awake’.

So why meditate? I try and meditate at least 10 minutes each and every day. Everyone is different but here’s what I’ve found with my practice.

For me, meditation is a challenge at the start. It’s not something you can sit down and just do. When you first begin, your mind will be racing with lots of different thoughts coming and going. The key is to recognize them and them let them go. Watch each thought, come and go. With time, I’ve managed to build up my meditation and my aim is to go longer and deeper into meditation. Just like your body, your mind is a muscle that needs to be trained. If you keep with it, the first thing I noticed is generally feeling calmer.

I am a strong Aries so it’s in my personality to often blow up in times of frustration, anger and upset. I’ve found with daily meditation practice, I can take a deep breath and come at the situation from a calmer place. When I’ve missed a day or two without my practice I can often tell the difference.

I’m more loving. I believe I am a loving person but I feel through my meditation, that I have become more understanding, better at being in the present moment and listening to someone. It really teaches you to be more compassionate towards yourself and to others.

I don’t know whether its the state of my current un-employed life but I feel I’m sleeping better and deeper and I awake feeling more rested and focused of what I want to get out of my day.

Meditation is great for managing stress. I had a job interview the other day and became aware that my breathing was uncomfortable and shallow. I closed my eyes, took deep breaths, in and out and managed brushing the nervous energy off me. I instantly felt more in control and less stressed.

Meditation has helped me to become less identified with our emotions. Our brains tend to rapidly wander around, thinking of negative things that have happened and negative things that may happen. What good does that do? Meditation teaches us to be in the now.

Today, I look forward to my meditation practice. At times I can find my mind is resisting against it but then other times I ease into it and it’s like bliss and I feel I can stay still for endless hours in this bliss. It has become a habit in my everyday life, like brushing my teeth. I’m still discovering more about myself and my life through meditation.

Do you meditate? Would you like to start? Let me know below.

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