Dr. Yoga Momma prayer pose (2)

My Meditation Journey (thus far…)

It was 20 years ago I was first introduced to meditation while on internship at the University of Miami cancer center.  I was required to attend daily meditation over the noon hour.  At first, all I noticed was my racing mind, impatience, and annoyance that I wasn’t spending my lunch break in the warm sun.  Within a few weeks, however, I began to settle and by the end of my month, it was the most important thing I had learned.  I took my newfound interest back to my small college in MN and told my professor I wanted to start a meditation group on campus.  My professor humored me, and gave me a small space in the back of the psychology lab and for a semester a small group of 3 explored the amazing power of meditation.

I’d love to tell you I stuck with it, but life happened….graduate school, marriage, kids, jobs.  Sure, I “dabbled” in it from time to time and certainly believed in it, but never made a daily commitment.  About 2 years ago following some life challenges, I returned to it in a committed and consistent way.  I now get up every morning and sit for 20 minutes. Just like brushing my teeth, I don’t miss a day.  While I’m sitting, it doesn’t feel magical, or transformative, or even useful.  Instead, I watch my mind get attached to experiences from the past, plan my schedule for the day, perseverate, and worry.  There are small moments of grace – periods of seconds where it’s just me and my breath, or when I notice my body relaxed yet expanded, but those times are fleeting.

So if I only experience seconds (and some days those seconds don’t even show up) of contentment, why am I doing it everyday?  Because the rest of my day and life has vastly improved.  I’m more clear in my work, I can better manage the intricacies of balancing 3 kids and 2 jobs, I have more compassion for myself which translates to more kindness for others, and the most profound gift – a deep sense that I am okay, no matter the challenge or crisis.  I am okay.

The research is established touting the benefits of meditation.  (Click here for a brief video from Deepak Chopra.)  Stress is a key player in all our lives.  Here is a tool that will significantly change your life.  What are you waiting for?